LocalGuides: Local + Social + Vertical

The image “http://www.localguides.com/images/home_explore_places_illu.png?1179369374” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.Google has taken up so much “shelf space” with coverage recently it’s hard to get to much else with any depth. But there are lots of other interesting things going on. One of those things is Local Matters’ new consumer destination LocalGuides.

Launched yesterday, LocalGuides combines local information with recommendations and lists around specific tasks or ambitions. Here are “Berkeley Furniture Shopping” and “Eugene Bathroom Remodel.” There’s more “context” here than one typically finds when one searches for contractors or stores or on isolated aspects of projects. There’s also lots of related information, which can be quite valuable.

It helps address the persistent issue: I don’t know what I don’t know. And getting a list of related information, contractors, etc. can be quite helpful in terms of creating more usability, trust and efficiency. I’m confident that people will create these lists, both because they value them and because they will want others to benefit from their hard-won experience.

None of the individual elements in LocalGuides is necessarily new or groundbreaking but the way that Perry Evans and his team have conceptually organized the content and user experience makes for one of the most interesting (and helpful) new local sites out there. This is not an “Internet yellow pages,” it’s a new animal.

I’ll write some more after I dig in a bit more. Perry has a more elaborate explanation and discussion of the site on his blog.

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Related: Chris Smith’s laudatory review of the site.

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4 Responses to “LocalGuides: Local + Social + Vertical”

  1. Local Guides Beta Launch : Natural Search Blog Says:

    [...] Greg Sterling is right — LocalGuides is one of the most interesting and helpful new local sites out there! Truly a [...]

  2. Michael Bauer Says:

    Hey, Greg. Michael Bauer at LMI – the Local Guides Guy. Thanks for the feedback. Looking forward to your digging into it a bit more. I’ve been putting up technical and marketing background at http://www.michaelbauer.com if you’d like to check that out. We eschewed groundbreaking for useful based on a lot of consumer research and advanced designed thinking. We’ll keep trying to impress you, though. :)

  3. “Roofvertising” mentioned in the news : Natural Search Blog Says:

    [...] Greg Sterling and I were quoted in a news story in yesterday’s USATODAY article by Craig Wilson, “Shout a message from the rooftops to the world“, along with Google Earth’s Chikai Ohazama. The article is about how people are increasingly trying to use Google Maps and other online local search and mapping systems to communicate messages or display ads by using their rooftops and other ground surfaces which may be seen via the satellite pix in those interfaces. [...]

  4. Local Guides Becomes Guidespot « Screenwerk Says:

    [...] Guides Becomes Guidespot Local Matters’ Local Guides, which I wrote about awhile ago here, has rebranded and been redesigned. It’s now Guidespot. I haven’t been through the site [...]

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