Archive for February, 2009

M-words: Monopoly and Mob Mentality

Sunday, February 22nd, 2009

This post is a reply to Greg Sterling’s post, Perception & Reality : Naming Names. It started out as a comment on his blog but became rather long winded and moved more in the direction of broad market commentary than just about Google and the “M-word”, monopoly. So I posted it here instead.

It is at times like this, deep recession, that the public becomes more protectionist, and politicians become more populist. Rightly or wrongly (mostly wrongly). Google best tread lightly in its M&A activities so as not to provoke the wrath of a nervous public, labeling them with the dirty “M-word”, and opportunistic politicians out to give the people what they think they want (the real reason, of course, is they want a moment in the lime-light and perhaps forward their careers with some higher political office appointment later on). Nor must they give reason for a competitor to play dirty by trying to sway things into that direction.

(more…)

The State of Local Search in Canada

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

Local search is generally the same here in Canada as it is in the US. SEO tactics are the same to get ranked at the top of organic results or map results, though there are a few geo-targeting techniques needed to ensure Google knows your site belongs in Canada, but this piece is not about that. I want to look at the state of the market in the local space online.

From my experience local is very healthy in Canada as far is internet users go. Internet usage on a per capita basis is higher than in the US at 80% vs. about 73% as Canada was an early adopter of the web. For a similar type local business in a similar sized city I’ve seen some of my Canadian clients receive a slightly higher level of search traffic volumes and online leads. Slight, but noticeable in the few instances I’ve had the opportunity to compare. So like I said local is healthy on the user side.

Where the big difference lies, in my opinion, is in the local space outside of traditional search, except Google Maps. Yahoo Local is still just pushing YellowPages.ca data and you can’t add or edit businesses like you can in the US version.

(more…)