Locu, the increasingly popular menu and price list dashboard for restaurants and local merchants, today announced that it has opened its publisher platform to any online publisher who is interested in using its data.
With its new publishing platform, third-party sites can now use the company’s data to embed its menus, price lists and other information about businesses on their sites. As Locu notes, all of this is available for free and it’s not a revenue sharing deal, so sites get to keep 100% of the revenue from the ads they serve around its data. The content also won’t feature any Locu branding.
Locu already worked with major online publishers like Yelp, OpenTable and TripAdvisor and it made an API available to developers last year. The publisher platform, however, now allows anybody to integrate the company’s data without having to touch the API directly.
“Consumers want the most complete and accurate information possible when searching for local businesses menus to price listings. Since partnering with Yelp, Foursquare, Trip Advisor, Open Table and others we have had a huge amount of interest from publishers looking to leverage our technology,” said Locu CEO Rene Reinsberg in a statement today.
Given that Locu charges businesses to use its service, giving the data to as many sites as possible is a smart move, as it will only expand its reach and just make the service even more interesting to merchants.
All of the data, of course, is hosted by Locu, so to start using it, website owners only have to add a few lines of code to their existing sites.
Going Beyond Restaurants
Locu also today announced that it has hired Mark Weiss, who previously spent five years at Trulia leading its partnerships with the real estate industry, as its new Head of Business development.
According to Weiss, Locu currently has data from more than 30,000 businesses in its database that have claimed their profile, though the company also says it has data fro “millions of businesses” in its database. While most people probably associate Locu with restaurant menus – one of the core features of its service – the company also caters to other service industries and indexes their hours of operation, address, services lists and prices, too.
About a third of new weekly sign-ups on Locu are now non-restaurants and Weiss tells me that ratio is increasing quickly. “Professional services such as law firms, personal care such as spas, and home services such as home remodeling are starting to use Locu rapidly to expand their presence online,” he noted.