Don’t Stop Believin’ (That Google Places Has Potential)

Dear Google Places, This isn’t working out. You’re unpredictable, inflexible, and sneaky, but lately, I find myself spending more time with you than ever. I can’t stand that you’re such an important fixture in my life, but to be honest, I’d be lost without you. I wish that you would [...]

TripAdvisor Astroturfing Hand Slapping

One of my favorite topics when it comes to review sites is astroturfing.* What is Astroturfing? If you’re not familiar, astroturfing is when you write fake reviews for a company – either positive reviews for your own, or negative ones for a competitor.  The term came about because you’re faking [...]

Google Places Best Ever Ratings: Do They Matter?

Have you heard of the “Best Ever” medal for businesses on Google Places? Surely you must have, since it was introduced almost 8 months ago. It’s a great concept, really. In case you didn’t know, you have 10 “Best Ever” medals to award to your most beloved places, from your [...]

Interview with on Dealer Ratings: Part 2

On Wednesday, we posted the first half of an interview with Nick Hummer of about how their new dealer ratings & review system is coming along.  Here for your reading pleasure is the second half of our discussion. JS: One of the things I thought was interesting is that [...]

Interview with on New Dealer Review System: Part 1

As we mentioned before, switched over to a new dealers review and rating system this past March, which is currently in an opt-in stage.  We wanted to get an update on how things were going so far, so we reached out to Nick Hummer, their product manager who’s leading [...]

What’s Next for Google Places? Reputation Management And…

…putting local SEOs out of business.  But that really only concerns us and companies like mine, so I assume that’s boring to read for you, so we’ll skip it.  Besides, that’s not really news.  We’ve seen this coming for awhile and they even made their AdWords login page more enticing [...]

Mobile Search is the Future. Are You Ready?

How does Google envision the future in 5 years? Google executive Tim Reis recently spoke at at a Pittsburgh Advertising Federation event in Pittsburgh and revealed some of the company’s future predictions.  He shared many noteworthy insights: Facts $500 billion in e-commerce purchases last year Number of internet users is [...] Gets in on Review Game: Will Post Customer Dealer Reviews

The importance and prevalence of online reviews is ever increasing; that’s why we discuss customer reviews so much here.  That’s why it was no surprise to see this article from Ward’s Dealer Business about entering into the auto dealers review space.  They had long been allowing customers to review [...]

How to Lose Guaranteed Business Fast: Negative Reviews on Google Places

I only have a few rules in life.  These include: The Golden Rule Never wear white after Labor Day. When I get an email that starts off addressing me as “the Local Search guru,” it’s getting published on the Found Blog. In that vein, off we go with last night’s [...]

Facebook Page – Places Page Decoupling No Longer Permanent

Not too long ago, facebook launched facebook places in an attempt to bust into the local-mobile space. My favorite part of this offering is how they straight up stole logo elements from Google Places (along with the name, not that it’s that original) and foursquare: One of the things they [...]

Google Places Now Verifying Discrepancies with Local Listings

I know we share our issues with Google here from time to time, but we try to be fair.  In that vein, they deserve some praise today for something they apparently started doing last night with Google Places (Mike Blumenthal is always on top of local SEO changes and his [...]

Learn How Potential Customers Act OFF Your Site: Google Places

For those of you not currently using Google Places, we wanted to give you one more reason why you should reconsider.  No, this isn’t about Hotpot (which might gain more friggin’ adoption if they would let it work on mobile phones besides Droid), Tags, the new floating map configuration, or [...]

Google Hotpot: Google Getting More Personalized, More Local

Last night – perhaps while you were dreaming about sugarplum fairies – Google did a soft launch of Hotpot.  It’s Google’s offering of personalized recommendations for local businesses based on a rating system and your network of friends.  Right now, it doesn’t seem to offer anything different than many of [...]

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