Category Archives: Google

Will Google Latitude Check-Ins Disrupt Foursquare’s Game?

Google quietly added check-ins to Google Latitude, taking on Foursquare in the local check-in game.

Currently Google Latitude users can check-in via their iPhone and Android apps, and view check-ins via their Google Latitude web app and dashboard.

I went through the Google Latitude API to see if an endpoint was added for check-ins, but currently you can only work with a users current location as well as location history.

So for now its just an application feature, but I’m sure its only a matter of time before recording check-ins and pulling a users historical check-ins will be available via the API.

Foursquare has dominated when it comes to local check-in, even remaining on top when challenged by Facebook check-ins.

I’m curious to see what the new Google Latitude feature will do to change Foursquare’s game?

Get Ready For Google + to Influence Your Local Business Search Results

Google has started weaving in Google+ into its search results, personalizing the Google search algorthm, and delivering results based upon who you circle and plus, with your Google+ profile.

As a small business owner, hopefully you maintain your business profile with local places providers like CityGrid and Google.  According to Mark Thomas over at Dirxion, Digital Publishing Blog, Google+ hasn’t started affecting the ranking of your Google Places ranking, but it is only a matter of time before it does.

Even though Google+ hasn’t developed as large of user base as Twitter and Facebook, they are growing fast.  And with the dominance of Google when it comes to organic search, you can bet that Google+ will soon become a major fixture in the social space.

Google has received some negative press about its recent decision to influence its search results using Google+, but the decision came after talks broke down with Twitter, to renew a contract that integrated Tweets into search results.

Even though Twitter and Facebook have larger audiences, they wish to retain much more control over their “gardens”, and with Google being a strong player not just in search, but with places, mapping and other local and mobile services–you can bet that its only a matter of time before they put their own social into the local, social and mobile algorithm.

As a local small business or hyperlocal developer, you should start considering how Google+ will fit into your local marketing strategy, and setup a Google+ profile page, and beginning cultivating your customer audience here, alongside with your Twitter and Facebook profiles.