Over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal ran an article pointing out how Google is increasingly favoring its own properties, in search results over natural results to outside sites which previously commanded the top spots. This practice is especially noticeable with Google Places and local results, but there are other examples as well from product and mortgage search to health search. We’ve… → Read More
We’ve just gotten word that local online guide Citysearch has just laid off part of its editorial department in an continuing effort to reposition itself. The Citysearch business unit of IAC recently rebranded itself as CityGrid Media, which includes the Citysearch listings service, the CityGrid ad network, Urbanspoon and InsiderPages.
Kara Nortman, Senior Vice President of Publishing for… → Read More
Ever since the launch of his CityGrid local advertising network at the beginning of the year, Citysearch CEO Jay Herratti has been putting most of his efforts into building out CityGrid as the largest network of local advertisers and local apps. Citysearch is now simply a flagship publisher on the CityGrid network. To reflect this shift in focus, the Citysearch business unit of IAC (which… → Read More
Urbanspoon plans to continue its assault on OpenTable, and its weapon of choice is going to be the iPad. I am not talking about Urbanspoon’s slick iPad app which is already out and is aimed at consumers. I am talking about the RezBook, which is part of Urbanspoon Rez and is aimed at restaurant owners.
When it comes out in June, RezBook will be a full reservation system. Instead of writing down… → Read More
Social recruiting is all the rage right now when it comes to finding new employees to hire. Citysearch CEO Jay Herratti recently told me about a simple but effective way his company is using Facebook ads to hire people. Facebook ads are highly targetable. Citysearch puts up an ad with a picture of the hiring manager and shows those ads only to that manager’s Facebook friends. For instance, the… → Read More
Louvion most recently served as chief technology officer for online ad sales company Gorilla Nation Media. Prior to that, he held positions with BizRate.com and Shopzilla. In his new role, Louvion will… → Read More
There’s no denying it. People love to shake their iPhones. It’s almost as if they want to see how much they can shake it before it breaks. But shaking it is half the fun, especially when apps take advantage of the built-in accelerometer to turn shaking into a feature. One of the earliest apps to make shaking a central element of its interface was Urbanspoon, the restaurant recommender. You… → Read More
One of the most detailed 3-D mapping apps on the iPhone is UpNext, which lets you click on 3-D buildings and see a list of the businesses and offices inside. Up until now, however, it only covered New York City.
A new update adds three new cities: Boston, Washington, D.C., and Austin (just in time for SXSW, of course). The Austin map won’t be available until later tonight, where it will appear… → Read More
Over the weekend, Citysearch pushed out an update to its iPhone app with a much smoother user interface, better local search, and maps are now the default view. I am happy to report that it no longer looks exactly like Yelp’s iPhone app. The improvements should help it close the gap (Yelp is currently the No. 4 free Travel app, while Citysearch is No. 36). In fact, it now does some things… → Read More
Twitter is becoming a serious marketing vehicle for local businesses. Everyone from your local baker to your favorite restaurant is getting on Twitter to talk to customers and draw in new ones. Just last weekend when I was driving to Vermont with my family, I sent out a Tweet asking for a good place to eat lunch. I got more than five responses, including one from a local innkeeper couple… → Read More
The momentum around local online advertising is growing, especially with the expansion of the Web to mobile devices and flowering of Geo-mobile apps which need a way to make money. Today, Citysearch is throwing its hat into the local advertising ring with the launch of CityGrid, a set of APIs which makes all of Citysearch’s local listings content and advertising available to other Websites and… → Read More
Hyperlocal business directory MerchantCircle has been steadily growing as an online network and business directory for merchants in smaller towns to advertise to consumers. MerchantCircle has long targeted its site’s features towards merchants versus catering towards the consumer, as sites like Yelp and CitySearch do. Today, the network has hit a milestone by signing up its one millionth… → Read More
Say what you will about the quality of the reviews on Yelp or the lengths it will go to get verboten features into its iPhone app, it has made the jump from Web 2.0 darling to a mainstream service. Over the past year, Yelp has nearly doubled its U.S. audience, while incumbent CitySearch has remained flat. In July, Yelp had 8.6 million unique U.S. visitors, up 80 percent from a year ago. … → Read More
It may be in the process of hiring a new CEO, but the MySpace machine keeps on rolling. Last month we got our first look at MySpace Local, the joint project between Citysearch and MySpace that combines the popular social network with Citysearch’s extensive database of business listings. The new property has quietly launched the public, and you can check it out here.
While MySpace is relying on… → Read More
As we wrote recently, the new app gives consumers even more ease in automatically reviewing businesses via their iPhone and enhances its existing GPS capabilities. The updated version of the app now lets Yelpers write reviews directly from their… → Read More
Local review sites like Yelp have irrevocably changed the way consumers find businesses in a particular area, and truly given power to the consumer in finding the best place to eat a meal, grab a drink, etc. And the potential of putting local reviews and listings on mobile devices is immense. Yelp’s existing iPhone app is less than a year old and it already accounts for 5% of Yelp’s overall… → Read More
MySpace and Citysearch are jointly announcing a new MySpace property this morning called MySpace Local. The site combines Citysearch business listings (including address, photos, menus, videos, maps and hours of location) from a thousand cities with the MySpace community. The site is launching into private beta this week, with a general U.S. launch next month.
The new site will eventually include… → Read More
Citysearch now has an iPhone app. It looks a lot like Yelp’s iPhone app, which came out two months ago looks and is currently the third most popular travel app (after Urbanspoon and Google Earth). Both tap into the iPhone’s GPS to let you find nearby restaurants, bars, clubs, hotels, and stores. Both let you rate and review the places you visit.
Both even share the exact same navigation… → Read More
Citysearch is finally coming around to replacing its creaking site design with something a little more contemporary. Today, it is launching in a major rethink of its entire site in beta that drills deeper into neighborhoods, uses Facebook Connect as an optional identity system, and lets users vote reviews up and down. The beta will quickly become the default Citysearch experience. During a demo… → Read More
Los Angeles based law firm Kabateck Brown Kellner, LLP has filed a class action lawsuit against Citysearch, accusing it of promoting click fraud. The suit was filed on behalf of plaintiff Tom Lambotte, who has charged that Citysearch has failed to recognize or reimburse him for the clickfraud that took place on an ad he placed between December 11 and 31, 2007. The suit also applies to anyone who… → Read More
Yelp, the popular local review site, will soon announce a new $15 million dollar round of financing led by DAG Ventures. The valuation is rumored to be in the $200 million range. Yelp says that they will be using the money to expand geographically, add onto their sales team, and establish an office in NYC (they are based in San Francisco). This is Yelp’s fourth round of funding since their… → Read More
The Insider Pages acquisition rumors that we posted on last week were accurate – later today Citysearch, a division of InterActive Corp., will announce that they have acquired the company. The size of the transaction is not being disclosed, although our understanding from a source close to the deal is that the price is in the $13 million range. The company had previously raised approximately… → Read More