Google Suggest Becomes More Local

Google is going after local search in a big way, especially with mobile and enhanced place listings. Now it is pushing more local searches through its auto-suggest feature on When you start typing in a keyword, the suggestions that you see are now geared to your location. Previously these were already specific to a country, but now they are by city.

For example, when I enter the word “central” in New York, the top suggestion is “central park,” followed by “central park zoo” and “central hudson.” When Leena searches for the same keyword in Chicago, the second suggestion is “central time,” which shows up as No. 5 on my autosuggest list.

Google also improved its spelling correction for people’s names by taking into account descriptive words in the search that provide clues as to what the person does or who they are. For instance, if you add “baseball player” or “author” it narrows down the choices. Finally, auto-suggest is now available in 31 languages.