Owning Your Local Presence Online [INFOGRAPHIC]

One thing that many people forget is that, in many cases, your business ultimately is a local business in the online space. Unless you are a pure online play people expect something more than just the usual e-mail dance to have contact. Many times, I use the example of IBM. Sure it’s a corporate behemoth but if you search for IBM with a local qualifier in Google there is likely to be a place page for a location if it exists in that city. IBM a local company? C’mon! Well, in a way yes.

A leading local Internet authority, Mike Blumenthal, has put together a VERY comprehensive infographic about the local presence and how search and social play together to form it.

Web Equity Infographic

Cup of Joe: Are You A Rat, Or A Scientist?

mazeI studied political science in college and one of my professors used to always say, “As political scientists it’s our job to study the system from the outside. Like traditional scientists that study rats in a maze, we study politicians in elections.” I never really felt comfortable with that analysis, because it seems to me that when you study something from the outside you are missing all the details. Details that can make or break a campaign. During school and shortly after I worked in politics and quickly learned the difference between running and talking about campaigns. There’s a lot you can’t see by looking in from the outside.

StumbleUpon Tests New Explore Feature

Last week, I made a prediction that StumbleUpon was on the way up again as a useful tool in the online marketing arsenal. Now, they just did themselves one better with a feature called “Explore.”

Currently, the only option for discovering new pages is to choose a general category such as parenting or marketing. With Explore, you can drill down to a specific keyword like “strollers” or “email marketing software.”

The problem with StumbleUpon traffic is that it’s never been highly targeted so it results in a large number of junk hits. But with the Explore feature, the results are so much more relevant that they could actually turn into conversions.

Google+ Chart Worth A Thousand Words

No matter what side of this tiff about Google+ and their mishandling or whatever of the business profiles ( I suggest we all put our laser sabers down and get back to neutral corners where sanity exists) the following chart tells a story that will make one say “This looks real to me” (thanks to GigaOM for sharing). Have a great weekend!

No Rise in Back-to-School Spending Says NRF

Back-to-school is the second largest seasonal shopping event, but this year it’s barely holding its own. New numbers from the National Retail Federation show a very slight dip in the expected spend. This year’s average spend for families with kids in grades K-12 is $603.63. Last year, the figure was 606.40 and that includes apparel, school supplies and electronics.

That still adds up to $22.8 billion in sales for the lower grades alone. When you add in college buying, the number climbs to $68.8 billion.

NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay says,

“Families aren’t opposed to spending on what they need, but parents want their children to take a good look around at what they already have before deciding what to buy for back to school this year.”

Google+ for All Businesses Coming In Next Few Months

Google+ has created some interesting scenarios as it relates to business. Since everyone seems to be scrambling “wild west style” to create a presence, Google has issued the following latest update (number 3) to give everyone the skinny on what their plans are for Google+ for business. Enjoy.

Google Places Update Puts Focus On Google

Google is making further moves to draw users attention to information that has been gathered through Google rather than third parties. The most recent change in Place Page layout is the most striking example of this.

The Google Lat Long blog tells us

Based on careful thought about the future direction of Place pages, and feedback we’ve heard over the past few months, review snippets from other web sources have now been removed from Place pages. Rating and review counts reflect only those that’ve been written by fellow Google users, and as part of our continued commitment to helping you find what you want on the web, we’re continuing to provide links to other review sites so you can get a comprehensive view of locations across the globe.