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Live Search Comes to MSN City Guides
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Microsoft has introduced a new version of MSN City Guides in a move the company calls "one step in a long term plan to help users stay in the know wherever they are."

The new MSN City Guides makes ample use of Live Search and Live Search Maps as well as video and social media. Users can share information through Windows Live and Facebook. Microsoft says this makes event organization easy.

Tons of Tips for Ranking in 5 Other Google Engines
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It’s not all about traffic. It’s about conversions. But it’s hard to get conversions if you don’t have the traffic, and while Google is one of the best potential sources for traffic, Google has other search engines besides web search that people use all the time, and it will not hurt to rank in them too.



Which engines besides web search do you see big traffic from? Comment.

Google Knows Where You Live
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Google’s changing it up, and local search optimization just became very, very important.

It used to be a searcher had to be very specific about a query to bring back local results. To borrow from Search Engine Guide’s Miriam Ellis, who tips us off to the changes in the usual Google “10 pack,” or the top ten search results, a search for “chiropractor” reveals just how geographically targeted Google’s results are now.

Mobile Local Search Advertising to Reach $1.3 Billion?
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Shortcovers on iPhoneThe number of people using mobile devices to get content is on the way up.

More Results Visualized on Google Maps
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When you search for local businesses on Google Maps, you will now see more than just ten results at a time plotted on the map. While the initial ten will still be plotted by pins and letters as before, you will see dots representing many more search results.

Cutts Confirms Google Toolbar PR Update
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A week or so ago, some people noticed some updates to Google Toolbar PageRank scores. It was unconfirmed however if this was an official update. Matt Cutts eventually confirmed on Twitter that it was indeed a Google update.

PubCon: Succeeding At Local And Mobile Search

For the moment, never mind the "world wide" aspect of the Web.  A whole lot of any business’s customers are likely to come from its home region, and so a PubCon session called "Local and Mobile" search took a look at ways in which companies can best serve these nearby individuals.

(Coverage of PubCon continues at WebProNews Videos.  Stay with WebProNews for continued coverage from the event this week.)

Local is As Local Does
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It looks like search engines have officially trumped the Yellow Pages when it comes to customers looking for local businesses. Data from comScore and TMP Directional Marketing shows that this year more people are turning to search engines after last year’s showed that Yellow Pages were on top.

What the Data Shows

Yahoo’s Openness To Search
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Yahoo announced that they have integrated a couple of applications from their SearchMonkey project into everyday search results for users of the Yahoo search engine. The two integrated apps are from Citysearch and Zagat, which Yahoo intends to use for improved local search results along with Yelp and its own Yahoo Local results.

Google Caters to Lazy Texters
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Google has added the "My Location" feature to its mobile search, which previously had only been available on Google Maps for Mobile. My Location recognizes your location (go figure) and gives you relevant search results based on where you are.

Instead of having to enter your geographical information, you can just automatically receive geographically relevant results. This will be a lot easier than texting out more information. Google displays the concept in this silly video:

Geographical Modifiers and Relevancy

Back in May, I noticed what appeared to be a test by Google to add more relevancy to search engine result (SERPs) by publishing a search box for geographical modifiers to a requested search query (Google Pushing Local Results). See image below:

Don’t Forget About Yahoo! Maps
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It’s been a long time since we’ve heard anything about Yahoo! Maps and just when we thought that Yahoo! had forgotten all about the map service, Yahoo! has surprised us by performing a major update to Yahoo! Maps.

Planet Discover Finds Local Success Normal
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Bringing a sharply focused local search experience to local media sites means making disparate data play nicely together. Planet Discover CEO David Lenzen wields the pointy stick and tells WebProNews more about it.

Google’s Local Search

Today while doing research for a client, I happened to notice something very interesting in Google’s results.

Google Pushes Local Search in SEPRs

The given search was for “hampton inn” and further research on other geographically relevant, broad terms returned similar results like “restaurant” and “mcdonalds.”

Not All Traffic Is Created Equal

For a long time there’s been a certain amount of obsession among webmasters about building traffic—any traffic—for websites. But really, especially if you’re location-based, the focus should be on building the right traffic.

Of course, search takes center stage in that struggle, but more recently social media sites like Digg.com and BoingBoing have captured the imaginations of traffic-obsessed marketers. Here’s what many of them discover, though: traffic bursts from those sites do little for sales.

Small Business Marketing Unleashed: Local Search

I’ve written about it before, and I’ll write about it again: the only phonebooks around my work desk are the ones raising it and the monitor a few inches higher than they’d otherwise sit.  Local search functions well from a consumer standpoint, and a session detailed how businesses can benefit from it, too.

LiveFeedback.org Helping Local Businesses

I’m excited to announce a new free service I developed for local businesses, LeaveFeedback.org. Local Search is one of the newest verticals in the search industry bringing with it the convergence of offline (local) businesses and online search. LeaveFeedback.org has a real solution to one of the biggest problems facing local businesses: online customer reviews.

Problem: Local businesses have difficulties getting online reviews from offline customers.

Should You Let Sam’s Club Be Your SEO Company?
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If the buzz is to be believed, Sam’s Club is now a search engine optimization company that is targeting the local search market aggressively.

The fact is, this isn’t something new; it’s just recently come to the forefront. Sam’s Club has partnered with a company called Innuity to offer a program that is primarily targeted at small businesses looking to get noticed in the local search results.

ZVents Announces Blended Results

Zvents announced their launch of a new, blended search results page for local content. Now, when you do searches on their site, they’ll bring back results for various businesses, events, performances, movies, store sales and more in your local area. Here’s a screengrab of the newly-blended results page:

For Local/B2B, Organic May Be Better Than PPC
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It can be especially difficult for business-to-business companies and brick-and-mortar stores to stand out in search results, especially if their relying on local results or paid listings. The answer to that, of course, is good (old fashioned?) SEO.

Galen De Young, managing director of Francis SEO, says research suggests b2b customers overwhelmingly ignore PPC ads in favor of organic listings. That and local search often fails to present businesses that serve a larger area than just their home base, or also nearby cities.

Recognizing the Best SEM Posts

Learning all there is to learn in Search Engine Marketing is no easy feat.

There’s no real text book, and if there was it would be outdated right after it was published I’m sure. The best place to get the best information in Search Marketing is from immersing yourself in the blogs of SEO and SEM.