The Increasing Impact of Reviews and Google+ (?!) on Local SEO

Some new data has given us some “big time insight” into how Google is using authoritative local sites to inform local search rankings, says David Mihm. Mike Blumenthal agrees, saying that the prominence of local review pages and appears to be “transferring prominence directly to the local entity in a way that is totally independent of links.”

Can Google Shift Its Revenue Model From Advertising to Products?

“Google rolling out integrated hardware and software is a big change,” Mike Blumenthal says to David Mihm. “They have tried their hand at manufacturing many times and failed, but this feels more strategic. Clearly their AI assistant effort is central and it seems that AI is table stakes for the coming battles.”

Is Apple’s Encroachment on Local Finally Ready for Prime Time?

“I see [Apple’s] messaging platform as the third leg of mobile (joining the web and apps) that we need in place for the transition to non-traditional interfaces like voice,” Mike Blumenthal tells David Mihm. “Apple is building out a stable of ‘body’ computers with the Watch and now the AirPods that can provide an interface to the web.”

As Google Pushes for Users to Stay on Its Platform, What Are the Effects for Local Search

“Obviously Google still controls a fair bit of the searcher’s pre-purchase mindshare, and they obviously want to retain that role,” writes Mike Blumenthal. “They are also fighting like crazy to be relevant in a world where 50% (and growing) of users’ total digital media time is spent in Apps.”

Tackling the Problem of Measurement in Local

“Google’s always had the disadvantage of being a more complex and opaque product than Facebook,” writes David Mihm, “but it feels like they’ve made almost zero progress on this front in the last eight years.”

As Local’s Complexity Grows, What Does It Take to Build a Sustainable Agency Business?

“There are two paths for consultants or small agencies today,” writes David Mihm. “Either be a generalist who’s aware of all the major channels, and the kinds of businesses that are good fits for those channels, or develop an incredibly deep focus in a particular channel, and make a name for yourself as the go-to resource within that channel.”

Mihm & Blumenthal: How Google’s Monetization Shift Will Impact Local Search

In this new feature, local marketing gurus David Mihm and Mike Blumenthal kick around some of the biggest ideas affecting the local search ecosystem and the broader industry. This edition looks at the latest changes from Google and how local marketers should react.