New GEO Search Feature from Google
Google is currently testing a new search feature called “Search By Location” in their Google Labs area. With CitySearch failing due to poor marketing, Google sees the benefits of providing localized searches. This new feature will allow you to search by US address, city, state or zip code so you can find local merchants quickly and easily.
Because this feature is in the Google Labs area, it is still in the testing phase so there are problems with it. I strongly suggest that you test your pages in GEO Search to ensure they are appearing for local search queries. If not, you will need to add relevant text to your pages, or create new pages based on your local services.
Beta Yahoo! Shopping Expires Oct. 15th
As I reported last month, Yahoo! launched a new “Products” tab to allow for a Shopping Search. The free search expires on Oct. 15th, at that time merchants will need to pay to submit their data feed as a pay per click service. This looks just like Google’s Froogle, only with a paid model. Minimum initial deposit is $50.00.
LookSmart Pricing Increase
LookSmart has raised their prices in a reversal of normal pricing policies. If your site is spending more than $750.00 per month with LookSmart instead of giving you a price break, LookSmart will raise your per click charge from 15 cents to a range of 23 cents to 75 cents per click, based on your business category.
It is obvious that LookSmart is doing this because of the threat of Microsoft launching their own search engine. Insiders claim that when Microsoft does launch their own search engine and ceases to use LookSmart for their primary search results it will be the end of LookSmart. Could this be the LookSmart executives final attempt to line their pockets before their business model fails?
The problem with DMOZ has grown from bad to worse. As the DMOZ editors have been 3-4 months behind in reviewing submissions, the submission process now returns an error – thus not allowing for new submissions. Word is there is such a backlog of submissions, that they will not be accepting submissions for a period of time.