Archive for David Mihm

The History of Google Places from David Mihm

David Mihm has put together a detailed infographic of the history of Google Places, from its beginning in March of 2004 as Google Local to the creation of the Google Place Page in October 2009 and the final re-branding of business listings to Google Places.  In the timeline he also includes significant personnel changes at Google, product changes, changes to the look of Local/Maps/Places, news and the launch of other local/mobile products.

I’ve been working in Local Search on a daily basis since June of 2008 and consider myself an expert in the field.  Even so, I’m still amazed by the changes and growth in that amount of time.  I keep abreast of the news and blog about it here, but seeing it all in one place is very cool.  As always, David Mihm has done a great job.

Here’s a small version of the graphic.  For a full-sized version, click on it to go to the source:

2011 Local Search Rankings Released

David Mihm has released his annual Local Search Ranking Factors list.  This is the best resource for local search marketers like myself online.  Of particular interest in this edition is:

  1. The breakdown between “Pure” Local results (Places only, the traditional “7-pack”) and “Blended” Local results (where Places listings are blended with other search engine results).
  2. The ranking factors for “pure” and “blended” are similar but not identical.
  3. The statement that there is no substantial difference between optimizing for Google and optimizing for Yahoo and Bing.  With Google dominating search (a 65.4% share of all search as of February 2011), the local search experts saw no discernible benefit in trying to  optimize specifically for Yahoo or Bing.
  4. The importance of maintaining NAP integrity throughout your listings and citations.  9 of the 19 negative ranking factors involved a mismatch between the Place Page and website or the placement of information for multiple locations on one page.  What I take away from this is that there is a one-to-one correlation between your Place Page and the website that your Place Page links to.
  5. The importance of associating your website with your Place Page.

What stands out to you in the report?