Posts tagged with Technology
Deadline to enter our KuBall NBA Draft contest is NOON TODAY.
Where will Aldrich, Collins and Henry go in the NBA Draft?
Think you know - enter our contest and you could win a Paul Pierce jersey & blu-ray player from Kiefs Audio-Video:
Two new features have been added to Marketplace that allow you to link your Marketplace Business to your other Social Media Sites and that make it easy for visitors to share content like coupons, photos and calender events on their facebook, twitter or email!
Link to FACEBOOK, TWITTER, YOUTUBE or any other Social Site from your Marketplace business
Share stuff you like through EMAIL, FACEBOOK, or TWITTER http://worldonline.media.clients.ellingtoncms.com/img/blogs/entry_img/2010/Mar/24/Share_This_Example.jpg
A few days ago AT&T YellowPages launched an improved site, yp.com, with a better-defined assertion that they are contenders in local search. I'm finding, almost in spite of myself, that I really like a bunch of the improvements. But I'm still quite disappointed when it comes to delivering complete local results.
Clearly, YellowPages realizes that the mass shift of consumers to online and now social online is not going to slow down and if they want to be a legitimate contender in local, social and search they've got to step up to the curve.
The Stuff I Like
So first, the stuff I like. The new feedback feature works great and is easy to find. The information on the search pages is presented in a more organized way. The look and feel of paid spots, like sponsorships and ads for example, are finally distinguished from the rest of the results and less obnoxious than with the old site. The site is cleaner overall and they've minimized the traditional yellowpage yellow and black. This might not seem like a big deal, but I've often contended that one big strike against phone book companies when it comes to repositioning themselves to local online search is that they all use some variation of the fingers walking and a yellow and black motif. With so many different phonebooks, often in the same community, how can one of them stand out as the most recognizable name and lead the market?
What I Don't Like
But despite these improvements, I still find fault with their fundamentals. It's downright painful to see how incomplete the search results are for my local community. Some searches yield better results than others, but often there are businesses listed for my query that haven't existed for years and at other times there are some well established businesses I'd expect to find info on that just don't show up at all. (Search for "clothing" in Lawrence - where's Weaver's?? our oldest local department store). And then, why am I finding all of these outside my city businesses ranked in with my actual local city? I'm sorry but the trend is towards hyper-geolocation. Kansas City is local relative to Lawrence in a regional way, but if I wanted a plumber in Kansas City versus in Lawrence where I live I would have searched for it that way.
Another important thing that caused me much irritation on the old version of the site was that sponsored or paid results were mixed in with organic results, seemingly indiscriminately. I mentioned above in my praise that paid spots were better separated this time around from the regular organic results, but on closer inspection I'm wondering how far this holds true? I'm still seeing results that don't look local at all and maybe only belong because they paid to be included in my zone. What's with the toll free numbers and the same business listed over and over again "serving my area" ?
Still got a ways to Go
In short, this is definitely a step in the right direction But while some of the "local search" functionality is greatly improved it still feels like they're just paying lip-service in other areas. And they're still a couple years behind national trends even with these improvements to local search. This new offering doesn't seem to have gained much ground when it comes to utilizing social media tools.
I've just completed some traffic analysis for Marketplace and wanted to share how our site is growing.
In 2009, the number of visits to Marketplace has doubled over the previous year ! Some of this is attributable to the expansions made to the site over the last year, but it's also a testament to the fact that here in Lawrence, Marketplace is the best place on the web to find local business information for our community.
Expansions to other Local Communities
In the summer of 2009, we expanded our coverage area to include the communities in Eudora, Basehor, Baldwin City and Tonganoxie - and we did so in a way that not only kept the site local for each of these communities (Eudoramarketplace.com shows you just Eudora businesses, for example) but also allowed users to switch between these communities or view all businesses in the area.
Then, in mid-October of 2009, we launched Shawneemarketplace.com to cover local businesses in the city of Shawnee, KS.
We are very grateful to the local businesses that have helped make Marketplace the tremendous resource of local business information that it is today, and to the local community for embracing the site. As we look forward to 2010, we have a lot of new features and enhancements in the works (we'll keep you posted here!) and continue to appreciate all the comments, suggestions, and feedback that you provide us.
Two exciting Social Media events are coming up locally here in Lawrence!
Lawrence Chamber of Commerce Social Media Workshops
The Lawrence Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the World Company's Social Media Staff, will will host two community workshops on social media on February 10th & 17th. from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. You can read more about these workshops and get more information on our Social Media blog.
Free State Social
The first of its kind in this area, the World Company is hosting an important seminar and workshop that features some of the top minds in social media both locally and from around the country. The Free State Social will be held April 29-30 at the new Oread Hotel and is a "don't miss" opportunity! More details can be found here: The Free State Social.