A roundup of today’s big stories in hyperlocal publishing, marketing, commerce, and technology…
Now You Can Get Price Quotes for Home Services Inside Yelp (BuzzFeed)
Whether you need a tub caulked or a smartphone screen repaired, Yelp is likely one of the first places you look to hire someone to do it, and now customers can request price quotes without ever leaving the reviews site. Yelp has been testing the feature since September, and it’s available to businesses in categories that include home repair, professional services, mechanics, catering, and event planning.
Will Facebook Salvage QR Codes from the Dustbin of Local Marketing History? (Blumenthals)
Mike Blumenthal: QR codes never took off in the U.S. It was an offline-to-online play that always required too many apps, took too many steps, was too obtuse, and ended up not solving any problems. But Facebook, with its Messenger ScanCode, is ready to replay the story, and this time I think there’s a compelling context that portends the return of the QR code as an effective small business tool.
SweetIQ CEO: Local Marketing Has Become ‘Far Too Fragmented’ (Street Fight)
“There are too many [companies] trying to compete” in local, says Mohannad El-Barachi. He suggested that the industry needs to come up with a set of principles under which SMB owners can say: “These are my expectations and here’s what I should be getting.”
Cross-Device Campaigns 60% Better Than PC-Only for Offline Conversions (Marketing Land)
According to new data from NinthDecimal, cross-device ad campaigns perform 60 percent better than desktop-only campaigns when it comes to in-store conversions. David Staas, president of NinthDecimal, argues that “mobile is now the glue” for all media, enabling “an apples-to-apples comparison of performance across channels.”
5 Monetization Strategies for Beacon Vendors (Street Fight)
Building a sustainable stream of revenue has proven to be harder than building a piece of hardware that detects nearby smartphones. In order for this burgeoning vertical to flourish, beacon vendors need to find a monetization strategy that makes sense.
EU Wants Google, Microsoft to Be More Transparent About Ads in Search Results (The Guardian)
The European Union wants search engines like Google and Bing to be more transparent about advertising in web search results, but ruled out a separate law for web platforms. “It’s practically impossible to regulate all the platforms with one really good single solution,” said European Commission VP Andrus Ansip.
HomeAdvisor, TalkLocal Are Customizing for Amazon Echo (Local Onliner)
HomeAdvisor has added its Instant Booking feature, which sends service pros out to a location, to Amazon Echo. According to CEO Chris Terrill, “Smart-home platforms are the next big growth accelerators for local home services, and no other player in our category has the scale or technology to unlock the power of the connected home for homeowners.”
Mobify Buys Pathful to Hone Mobile Shopping Pitches (Fortune)
Mobify, a startup which aims to help retailers attract and retain customers both online and in the brick-and-mortar world, has bought Pathful, a small AI specialist. Pathful will bring machine learning to more tailored offers for would-be shoppers based on tastes, interests, and past actions.
GoDaddy CTO and Cloud VP Heads to Google (TechCrunch)
GoDaddy CTO Elissa Murphy will be leaving the company next month for Google. Her departure comes as GoDaddy has begun building out cloud infrastructure, helping it evolve from a simple hosting service to something more robust.