Features | Street Fight - Part 30

7 Platforms Local Merchants Can Use to Build Mobile Websites

Stephanie Miles

7 Platforms Local Merchants Can Use to Build Mobile Websites

Fifty-four percent of smartphone users now use their phones to “pre-shop” before arriving at stores, and 51% of consumers are more likely to make purchases from retailers with mobile sites. Despite this, only 4.8% of retailers in the U.S. currently have mobile websites. In response, a number of hyperlocal companies have stepped up with platforms that SMBs can use to easily create mobile-optimized sites. Here are seven of them…

Weekly News Recap: Patch’s Editor-In-Chief Steps Down

Isa Jones

Weekly News Recap: Patch’s Editor-In-Chief Steps Down

AOL’s much-discussed hyperlocal network Patch is in the midst of changes at the top of its masthead. Editor-in-Chief Brian Farnham, who had been with the company for four years, announced during a conference call this week that he would be leaving. Here’s a look at some of the coverage of Farnham’s departure.

6 Mobile Coupon Platforms for Merchants

Stephanie Miles

6 Mobile Coupon Platforms for Merchants

One of the simplest solutions for merchants just beginning to dip their toes into mobile marketing is text-based mobile coupons. Coupons that are sent via SMS are eight times more likely to be redeemed than coupons sent through email, and 90% of these messages are opened up within just three minutes of receipt. Here are six tools that local merchants can use to drive sales with targeted coupons sent to their customers’ mobile phones…

News Recap: Groupon’s Financial Troubles

Isa Jones

News Recap: Groupon’s Financial Troubles

Groupon took flak this week after the daily deals giant restated its fourth quarter earnings and cited inadequate resources allocated for refunds. In the wake of the restatement, the recently public company’s stock price plummeted, the SEC initiated a probe into its business practices, and it was hit with a stockholder’s lawsuit. Here’s a look back at some of the coverage of Groupon’s troubling week…

7 Tips for Big Brands That Want to Reach Local Consumers

Stephanie Miles

7 Tips for Big Brands That Want to Reach Local Consumers

National brands that add local context to their mobile campaigns can expect to see click-through rates that are 4% to 7% higher than typical mobile display ads, while adding something as simple as a local phone number to an ad can increase response rates by 40%. We asked two top marketers for their advice to brands thinking of going local…

4 Keys to Launching a Location-based Service

Steven Jacobs

4 Keys to Launching a Location-based Service

What makes launching a location-based app so difficult? In addition to the run-of-the-mill issues that face consumer startups as a whole, location-based services are plagued by the fact that they’re inherently local products, meaning that success has to be geographically relevant. 10,000 users spread across the country are not nearly as valuable as 1,000 users in a single neighborhood…

News Recap: Twitter Teams Up With AmEx to Help SMBs

Isa Jones

News Recap: Twitter Teams Up With AmEx to Help SMBs

As part of a new partnership with American Express, Twitter announced this week that it will now use its ability to draw attention to certain topics to help advertise local businesses. Basically, this means that in addition to the “promoted tweets” seen by users, now ads from small businesses will also appear in their feeds…

6 Lead-Generation Tools for Small Businesses

Stephanie Miles

6 Lead-Generation Tools for Small Businesses

Hyperlocal platforms aimed at fulfilling consumer service requests are becoming increasingly attractive to these small business owners, since these platforms generally involve a minimal investment of time or money on the part of the local merchant. Rather than paying upfront for advertisements that may or may not generate actual leads, business owners can sit back and wait for leads to come to them…

5 Ways Hyperlocal News Sites Can Use Social Media to Drive Engagement

Isa Jones

5 Ways Hyperlocal News Sites Can Use Social Media to Drive Engagement

Social media is a powerful and necessary tool for hyperlocal publications to engage with their readers and promote their work. In small communities, it can be a vital conduit to reach local people, build traffic, and provide value for advertisers. Here are five tips from hyperlocal publishers on how to increase a site’s social media presence…

5 Online Marketing Strategies Every Restaurateur Should Know About

Stephanie Miles

5 Online Marketing Strategies Every Restaurateur Should Know About

Creating an effective online marketing campaign isn’t always a simple task — especially for restaurant owners that are used to focusing the majority of their time and energy on what’s happening in the kitchen. In recent years, a number of hyperlocal platforms have stepped in to make it easier for independent restaurateurs to develop websites, manage social media, and cultivate better relationships with their customers online…

Three Years After Its Launch, Foursquare Works to Become a Business

Steven Jacobs

Three Years After Its Launch, Foursquare Works to Become a Business

Three years ago this morning, Foursquare launched what one pundit called its “where-am-I-now app” at SXSW – the name did not stick. Since its launch, the location-based service has attracted over 20 million users and upwards of 750,000 merchants, has outflanked a company worth $94 billion in the location space, and crushed a competitor that was sold to said company for its parts…

6 Mobile Payments Platforms for Merchants

Stephanie Miles

6 Mobile Payments Platforms for Merchants

Only 4% of merchants currently accept mobile payments, according to a study by Javelin Strategy & Research, however 20% say they intend to adopt this technology within the next 12 months. Given that mobile payments are still in their infancy, and the landscape is still wide open, several players are vying for market dominance. It’s hard to say yet whether one will be a clear winner, or, as with cell phones and credit cards themselves, there will be a handful of leading options.

Local Quotables: Stangel, Biggs, Hyslop and More

Isa Jones

Local Quotables: Stangel, Biggs, Hyslop and More

The best words about and around the hyperlocal industry. Luke Stangel thinks augmented reality development could mean huge things for hyperlocal; John Biggs blasts hot new app Highlight for sharing users’ information without permission; Kate Hyslop reinforces the importances of an online presence for local businesses; and more…

Using Groupon for Customer Acquisition

Stephanie Miles

Using Groupon for Customer Acquisition

Everyone’s heard a horror story about a Groupon deal gone awry, but there’s a reason why daily deals have become so ubiquitous among small-business owners in the last three years. When done right, a targeted Groupon offer can pump up customer acquisition rates and boost immediate sales…

5 Platforms for Tracking and Analyzing Customer Habits

Stephanie Miles

5 Platforms for Tracking and Analyzing Customer Habits

By analyzing check-in data, measuring customer engagement, and tracking overall sentiment on social networking and review sites, these firms help companies get a data-driven view into consumer habits — and ultimately identify their most valuable customers. Here are five platforms that merchants can use to track and analyze this latest wave of consumer information…

Using LevelUp To Build Brand Loyalty

Stephanie Miles

Using LevelUp To Build Brand Loyalty

Forget the paper punch cards and plastic key fobs that most people associate with small business rewards programs. In an effort to grab the attention of customers and promote true brand loyalty, today’s SMBs are looking for digital alternatives. LevelUp, the mobile-payments-meets-loyalty program, has quickly become the frontrunner in this race…

Local Quotables: Doctor, Kurzweil, Millard and more

Isa Jones

Local Quotables: Doctor, Kurzweil, Millard and more

The best words about and around the hyperlocal industry.

Ken Doctor thinks New Corp can’t go local with their business model; Jordan Kurzweil thinks the demand for local news is less than people think; Amy Millard says that local businesses have more Facebook interaction than their corporate counterparts; and more.