I just wrote up the Google Q3 earnings on SEL. During the Q&A portion of the call SVP of product Jonathan Rosenberg spoke at some length about Maps and Local Listing Ads. Paraphrasing, he said that a number of recent innovations are “working together”:
- There are now more than 50 million Place Pages, which can be used as landing pages or websites for SMBs
- Local Listing Ads are very simple; no keywords, no bidding
- All the calls generated via Local Listing Ads “go through Google Voice” (i.e., call tracking)
- “Everything is finally in place to enable small businesses to connect with customers online”
The latter has a “master plan” ring to it . . . 🙂
Rosenberg also talked about Maps and how some recent changes will enable Google to be more “flexible” and create different and better maps. The example he kept using was how tourists and locals need different kinds of maps.
TeleAtlas as data provider has essentially received the boot (my words) in the US and Mexico. According to Rosenberg, “We’re using the new system in the US and Mexico.” He said the data “are coming from a wide range of sources” including Street View, Census bureau, overhead imagery, local knowledge (UGC). “It gives us lots of flexibility to create different types of maps. It allows us to launch better Place Pages and is quite significant.”