Building Your Own Local Search Engine
Quite a few bloggers out there have clued-in to how using Eurekster’s Swickis on their blogs can be a cool feature enhancement, providing custom thematic search engines for their users.
If you have a blog that focuses on particular subject matter, inclusion of useful links and other features like these custom search engines can help to build loyalty and return visits. But, for webmasters who build local guides for small communities, Swickis are also an ideal way to rapidly provide robust, location-specific search functionality.
Over time, I’ve looked at a lot of small community guides, and many of the people who create them are masters of finding free widgets to provide functionality for things like weather forecasts, news headlines, and local events. But, many of these sites are missing even simple search functionality to help users find the local info on their site as well as elsewhere on the internet.
For instance, check out these small town websites for: Milan, Tennessee; Monterey, California; and Fredericksburg, Texas. Each one of these sites seem to be something less than comprehensive guides for their areas, and each could benefit from having a search engine to provide a route into more info about their areas.
Eurekster is perfect for this sort of thing — check out the search engine portal I whipped-up there for Milan, Tennessee in just about five minutes:
The rectangular widget that the service provides includes a search form box along with a “buzzcloud” of keyword links to top items you select to hot-link right into the search results. The interfaces are easily customizable in look and feel, and you can set up a few different search ads to run in the results pages, if you’ve signed up with those services to do so.
Here’s another cool example local swicki that someone created as a Seattle search engine.
So, if you need a quick, local search engine, Eurekster is definitely the way to go.