A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Google Search Ads Get A Lot Sexier With Sharp, Gorgeous Photos (Mashable)
Google is replacing some of its boring text-only search ads on mobile phones with flashy, gorgeously produced photo versions — likely for a price. The eye-catching, overhauled visual ads allow you to flip through photos, research product information and book reservations directly from the search screen.
How Pinterest, Twitter and Nextdoor Think about Small Business (Street Fight)
A new generation of social media giants are betting big on Main Street. During the morning session of Street Fight Summit West in San Francisco, representatives from Twitter, Pinterest, and Nextdoor discussed programs designed to engage small businesses within local communities for future generations of the web.
Pinterest Launches the Buy Button (Recode)
People using the visual discovery tool can buy products inside the application itself, without ever leaving Pinterest. Pinterest is also partnering with Shopify and Demandware to make it easier for small- and medium-sized businesses to sell products through the site.
How Partnerships Are Driving the Next Generation of Delivery (Street Fight)
During a session at Street Fight Summit West in San Francisco Tuesday, executives from grocery ordering firm Instacart, food delivery startup DoorDash, and local logistics play Postmates came together to discuss the future of delivery.
Instagram to Open Its Photo Feed to Ads (New York Times)
The company announced plans to open the Instagram feed to all advertisers, from the local tattoo parlor to global food makers, later this year. Marketers will be able to target ads to the service’s 300 million users by interest, age, gender and other factors, just as they can on Facebook.
Inside the Local Services Land Grab (Street Fight)
The local service industry has exploded in recent years as investors pour billion into companies creating new ways for consumer to transact with plumbers, painters and other service professionals. But even today, service professionals still rely mostly on word of mouth to find leads and get new jobs.
Samsung Delays Start of Mobile Payment Service to September (Bloomberg)
Samsung delayed the start of its mobile payment service until September, further hindering its ability to gain ground against competing services from Apple and Google. Samsung Pay will debut in the U.S. and South Korea in conjunction with the company’s next high-end mobile device.
Yelp Adds eCommerce for Local Boutiques (Small Business Trends)
Through a new partnership with the boutique shopping platform Shoptiques.com, Yelp now offers consumers the ability to purchase high-end apparel and accessories from these retailers based in the U.S., England and France. It says it seeks to provide small businesses with digital solutions that allow them to compete globally.
Groupon CFO Jumps to Jawbone in Latest Talent Grab (Recode)
The departure from the Chicago-based online discounts company was made this morning, although it did not say where its top financial exec was going in its announcement. Groupon also said that its current North Americas head Rich Williams would become COO.
New Square Hire From Google Hints At Hiring Expansion (Forbes)
Square is looking to grow if a recent hire is any indication. Former Google executive Aditya Roy announced on his LinkedIn profile that he had joined the payments company to head up recruiting, human resources and diversity initiatives as its “Head of People.”
Urban Massage, The On-Demand Massage Service, Picks Up Further Backing At $12M Valuation (TechCrunch)
Urban Massage, the U.K. startup that offers an Uber-style massage booking service similar to U.S.-based Zeel, has picked up a new round of funding. Urban Massage’s website and apps for iOS and Android aims to let you book a same-day (or even same-hour) massage in as little 30 seconds.