Video: Last Week in Local – October 21, 2019
Mike Blumenthal

Every week we bring you a brief 15 minute video and the links of the best articles in Local Search. OK. It’s not always 15 minutes but we are never off by more than 10 minutes or so.

Last Week in Local is now available as a podcast. Sign up here for your regular Local Fix. What better way to spend your drive time? Interested in sponsoring Last Week in Local? Get in touch with us!

NYU professor Scott Galloway says that the era of startups growing at all costs is coming to a close, and it means Uber is likely going to have to change its business model


Mike: “There are few products that scale like a dollar offered for $ 0.50. If it feels like 1999 again with charismatic CEOs cut with cheap capital — and the illusion of the prosperity party rocks on into the morning.”

Scott Galloway presents a great model for understanding which of the unicorns are charlatans and which offer real value.

UPS Now Runs the First Official Drone Airline | WIRED


Mike: Drone delivery is coming to a house near you very soon.

Supreme Court allows blind people to sue retailers if their websites are not accessible – Los Angeles Times


Mike: We have said it before and will say it again: Make sure your site is ADA (Americans with Disability Act) compliant. Now even the Supreme Court agrees.

9 things to know about Google’s maps data: Beyond the Map | Google Cloud Blog


Mike: Interesting factoids:

*Google Maps have over 1 billion daily users

*5 million websites and apps use it.

*Users contribute more than 20 million pieces of information every day–that’s more than 200 contributions every second

Voice guidance in Maps, built for people with impaired vision


Mike: Google Maps is rolling out a new feature that gives people the ability to receive more detailed voice guidance and new types of verbal announcements for walking trips. This feature is the first in Google Maps to be built from the ground up by, and for, people with vision impairments.

This demonstrates Google’s deep and broad investment in Google Maps and making it THE interface of choice in Local.

150k Small Business Website Teardown Part Three: WordPress • Fresh Chalk


Mike: A great summary of which WordPress hosts do a good job and which don’t: “For hosting my small business WordPress site, I’d probably go with WP Engine. The price is right and those websites perform nicely. “

Highlight – Does Yelp Extort Businesses? – The Daily Show with Trevor Noah (Video Clip) | Comedy Central


Mike: “Yelp gives extortion a bad name”

 How The Infatuation disrupted restaurant criticism — and bought Zagat


Mike: An interesting look at the alternative to UGC reviews and algos that fail to catch the spam or help users all that much.

Google testing Duplex on the web as ‘Assistant in Chrome’ – 9to5Google


Mike: Google is starting with automating the rental car and movie ticket booking process, with Android Police spotting the latter in action today.

The transactions are coming! The Transactions are coming.

Brian Fitz?rick on Twitter: “Google Assistant/Reserve With Google is causing severe damage to restaurants and is eroding the trust of restaurant guests. This needs to stop. A thread:…”


Mike: Now if Google could just tell the affected restaurants.

Keeping privacy and security simple, for you


Mike: Incognito mode is arriving for Maps so SEO’s can now “depersonalize” Map results.

How Car Dealerships Are Speeding Ahead with Google My Business – BrightLocal


Mary: Hotels, restaurants and car dealerships benefit from the most discovery and direct searches according to a recent study conducted by @BrightLocal. If you work with car dealerships, this is a must-read full of stats to help you make your case for investing in Local Search.

Watch Local SEO Experts Prank A Google Local Spammer


Mary: Watch Joy Hawkins and Blake Denham give a telemarketer the business!

A 50-Point Audit for Getting Started with Local SEO


Mary: Kevin Rowe gives us his 50 point audit for Local SEO. It is based on Moz’s best practices. I don’t necessarily agree with some of it.

–List NAP of all locations in footer?

–For example, “1234 Anywhere Street” and “1234 Anywhere St.” mean the same thing to most people, but can muddy up your SEO if you use them interchangeably.

–With an estimated 20% U.S. market share in search, you shouldn’t neglect setting up your site with Bing’s tool.

There’s enough misinformation in here to make me cringe a little. Don’t believe everything you read about LocalSearch unless you trust the writer and the publishing source and in Local Search, it’s important to know when it was published.

Claire Carlile on Twitter: “You know that ‘latest photos’ ? is populated from user photos, right? Make sure you check your user-uploaded photos VERY regularly so that you don’t get any SHOCKERS showing centre stage in GMB! ? #LocalSEO…”


Carrie: Claire Carlile shared a good tip on Twitter – the “Latest Photos” section of the Knowledge Panel is populated by user photos on Twitter – better be checking that frequently, esp. when you have very active customers/clients who upload photos a lot.

Does Review Gating Impact Star-Ratings? – GatherUp


Carrie: Mike wrote a post over at GatherUp about review gating and the impact removing the tactic has had on average ratings. Spoiler Alert – not much – move on.

Expert Tips for Ranking on Holiday Terms in the Local Pack


Carrie: Wrap up of the Webinar Rio did on “getting ready for the holiday season” that our own Mary Bowling participated in. This is the blog post with the TL;DR and the tactics in it – great stuff!

The Fear of Asking For Online Reviews: A Terrifying Reputation Webinar


Carrie: Claire Carlile and Greg Gifford are doing a webinar for on October 29 about The Fear of Asking For Online Reviews: A Terrifying Reputation Webinar. It looks like a fun look at how to get over the fear and how to “craft your ask” with the best possible outcome in mind.

Want to subscribe to our podcast? Now you can:Subscribe here.