Video: Last Week in Local March 27th, 2017
Mike Blumenthal

Join Local U for the next public episode of Last Week in Local, a weekly conversation about the articles that attracted our attention during the past week ending March 27th, 2017.

This year we will be publishing our Last Week in Local video directly to the Local U blog. It will be published every Monday and will include discussions about the events in the last week — strategic and tactical — that affect Local SEO & marketing.

If you have a special topic you would like us to discuss for our other weekly feature, the Deep Dive in Local, or if you would like to be on one or the other of our segments, reach out and send us the topic and your availability. If you are interested in sponsoring this weekly show also please let us know.

Let us know what you think. Welcome to Last Week in Local!


Mike’s Links

Amazon’s Ambitions Unboxed: Stores for Furniture, Appliances and More

The company is exploring the idea of creating stores to sell furniture and home appliances, like refrigerators — the kinds of products that shoppers are not likely to buy online. This can only make the pain of local retailers (see below) even greater.

The holiday is over: Amazon will collect sales taxes nationwide on April 1

After 20 some years, Mom and Pops are on equal sales tax footing with the internet… well at least with the Amazon part of it. The inequity in sales tax enforcement has created a market distortion that has affected way to many local businesses for way too long.

Payless Shoes to File for Bankruptcy Next Week

The prospect of a Payless bankruptcy is just the last bad news to buffet the retail world. Stores like The Sports Authority, American Apparel, Aéropostale, Wet Seal and PacSun are among the retailers to have filed for bankruptcy protection in the last two years, with some liquidating altogether. On Tuesday, Sears questioned whether it can stay in business. The US is so overbuilt with retail space that this trend will continue.

Instagram to Let Users Book With Businesses in Challenge to Yelp – Bloomberg

Interesting to see Instagram essentially enter the local space via transactions. Article noted that they may soon add reviews as well. Yelp could be the loser here.

Google Is Automating Ownership Conflict Resolution

Long the headache of agencies and businesses alike, there is now a fair bit of automation and quick resolution in the obvious cases. If the machine can’t resolve the business will be able to appeal (one assumes with human intervention) those cases that are less clear. Here’s hoping!

Facebook tests an enhanced local search and discovery feature offering business suggestions

Facebook users are now able to surface recommendations of nearby places — like “dinner nearby” or “bars nearby,” for example — by entering a query in Facebook’s search box on the web or mobile. Local search + Facebook = One of these days.

How to harness the power of Facebook Local Pages to drive in-store sales

A good reminder that businesses small and large need to pay attention to their Facebook Local pages. “Local Pages have five times more reach than national Facebook pages and eight times more impressions.”

Rankings Correlation Study: Domain Authority vs. Branded Search Volume – Moz

In this interesting study, the author found that brand mentions correlated better with rank than Moz domain prominence…. hmm.

Mary’s Links

Optimize for Engagement in Local Search (Engage 2017)

A good summary of the varied Key Performance Indicators for measuring success in Local by Dana DiTomaso.

The Day Google’s Spam Algo Died – Online Ownership

Spam, Spam, Spam and More Spam

Facebook Inches Closer to Something That Looks Like Local Search

Greg Sterling on Facebook and Local Search and why they haven’t really done anything significant yet.

SMX West session: The definitive guide to local search ranking factors

Andrew Shotland and Dan Leibson presented their Local Search Ranking Factors study at SMX last week.

Proximity, The Number 1 Local SEO Ranking Sub-Factor – Local SEO Guide

Yes but… as Dan points out, in the tri-modal world of the Google local algo, it can never be viewed in isolation but rather as needing the other legs of relevance and prominence.

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