A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Google Launches Grocery Delivery Service in San Francisco and Los Angeles (TechCrunch)
Watch out, Instacart and Amazon Fresh — Google is going head-to-head against grocery-delivery startups with a service expansion. Google Express will now bring fresh grocery deliveries to parts of California.
Nextdoor Launches in Europe (The Next Web)
Nextdoor, the social network for neighbors, is expanding outside the U.S. and launching in the Netherlands. The platform has been live in the U.S. for more than four years and hosts more than 92,000 active communities from all 50 states.
New Alignable Rankings Shed Light on What SMBs Really Think of Tech Vendors (Street Fight)
Alignable, a social networking platform for small business owners, has released its first quarterly SMB Trust Index, which shows what small businesses think of a variety of SMB tech brands.
Report: Apps Convert Better for Retailers than Mobile Web or Desktop (Marketing Land)
One of the findings of a new report is that retailers with successful apps are driving higher volumes of mobile commerce than average. While apps constituted a bare majority (54 percent) of mobile transactions by volume, app-based mobile shoppers are much more engaged and much more likely to convert than mobile web users.
Facebook Will Make Instant Articles Available to All Publishers (Wall Street Journal)
Facebook is opening up its Instant Articles to all publishers on April 12, less than a year after launching the experiment with a handful of large media outlets. Now anyone with a website and a Facebook page will be able to take advantage of the program, which lets publishers host content directly on Facebook instead of posting links to direct users back to their own sites.
Survey: SMBs Beefing Up Local Marketing — And Favoring Free Social Over Websites (Street Fight)
More and more SMBs are upping their digital marketing game — even though they still don’t have a clear understanding of the relative ROI of various channels. According to Thrive Analytics’ Local Pulse Report, 42 percent of SMBs are planning to boost their local marketing budgets in 2016.
Shopping Is Coming to Snapchat, Board Member Joanna Coles Says (Recode)
Snapchat’s Discover section is all about content. Soon it’ll be about shopping, too. So said Joanna Coles, the editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan and a member of Snapchat’s board of directors, about plans for a Hearst Snapchat channel called Sweet: “At some point [Sweet] will morph into an ecommerce platform, so you will be able to buy from it.”
David Pogue’s Yahoo Web Home Gutted in Cost-Cutting Purge (Ars Technica)
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer hired former New York Times technology columnist David Pogue in October of 2013 and brought in a stable of other editorial talent to create digital magazines for various verticals as part of her turnaround strategy for the company. But the turnaround never materialized, and now the sites are being shut or scaled down.
Marketers Keep Spending on Social Despite Lack of Results (AdAge)
According to a new survey, marketers are expected to nearly double their social media spending in the next five years even though most can’t show the impact of social on their business. Another finding shows “consistent drop-offs for traditional advertising spending.”
Highstreet Turns Your Online Store Into a Full-Featured Mobile Shopping App (The Next Web)
Looking to go mobile with your online store? Your site might already have a responsive design, but it’s hard to beat native apps when it comes to performance and functionality. That’s where Highstreet comes in. The company’s platform helps you create a fast, beautiful, and feature-packed mobile shopping app for your store by plugging into your existing catalog and ecommerce setup.
Google Wants to Run Elections On Its Website (Quartz)
A new patent awarded to Google hints at a future where we can vote on anything right from our computers. The patent is for a built-in voting system that would allow users to find who is running for something and vote without leaving Google.com.