A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Inside Facebook’s Push to Make Pages the Dominant Mobile Tool for SMBs (Street Fight)
Small businesses have a special place in Facebook’s heart, and earlier this month, COO Sheryl Sandberg said that SMB advertising remains one of its “biggest opportunities.” The company’s plan for cornering this market? Pages. Street Fight spoke recently with executives Dan Levy and Benji Shomair about Facebook’s progress in driving value for SMBs.
Most Digital Buyers Will Make Purchases via Smartphone by 2017 (eMarketer)
Next year will mark a milestone for U.S. commerce, as more than half of digital buyers will use a smartphone to complete a purchase. 2017 will also be a benchmark year in sales, as $75.51 billion, or 50 percent, of all retail mcommerce sales will be transacted on smartphones.
Alibaba Eyeing Buyout Bid with Groupon Investment? (Forbes)
Doug Young: Alibaba is likely to enter talks to buy a strategic stake in Groupon, or even make a bid for the entire company, following its disclosure that it has purchased 5.6 percent of the company.
Local News and Ad Industries Eye Sweeping Realignment With Users (Part 1) (Street Fight)
Tom Grubisich: The solution to digital news media’s woes, according to Bill Densmore, will necessitate a total transformation of the news industry to create more transparent and mutually beneficial relationships among publishers, users, and advertisers. This can happen through what Densmore calls the “Information Trust Exchange.”
Print’s Dead — But So Is Digital (USA Today)
Michael Wolff: While neither consumers nor advertisers will pay enough for news to cover its costs in print form, they won’t cover the costs in digital, either. Immediacy, efficiency, searchability, and connectedness have not proved to be any more valuable than the slow delivery of yesterday’s news.
Mobile was Huge for Holiday 2015… Now What? (GeoMarketing)
Maya Mikhailov: What did we learn last year about mobile? That stores aren’t dead, but your store experience is; if consumers can’t search for you, they’ll find another; to measure mobile correctly – it’s conversion per visitor, not conversion per visit; and scale and security matter for success.
Yext Integrates Google Into PowerListings, Extends Real-Time Updates for Both SMBs and Enterprise (Street Fight)
Yext today announced a new integration with Google that will allow the company to offer real-time updates to all of its customers across Google’s suite of listings products. The integration eliminates manual submission and allows all of Yext’s customers to adjust how information is displayed on Google in real time.
Knowing When, and How, to Pivot (Or, Why Didn’t News Apps Work?) (Medium)
Jason Calacanis: News apps failed because social networks succeeded. People want to get their news filtered through their social network. It’s just easier and more fun to click on news links your friends are sharing than to open a separate app.
Placeboard Makes It Easy to Remember All the Places You Want to Go (The Next Web)
An app called Placeboard allows you to save and organize places you want to go on a map, with added context and the option to collaborate with friends. Placeboard automatically fills in the website and phone number on every location and is connected to Apple Maps, so it tells you how far away each location is and will give you directions when you need them.
What’s the Reality of Virtual Reality for Small Business? (Marketing Land)
Chris Marentis: There are exciting technologies on the horizon to take visualization to levels of stimulation, interaction, and immersion. Virtual reality, for example, once thought to be useful only for gaming, is going to enter the realm of consumers and small businesses very soon. But VR is tricky terrain and not easy to understand.