|Maps.Google Beta Launched|
In the latest move on the local search and mapping front, Google yesterday launches Maps.Google.com
So I am a touch slow here...
I guess we can talk about about it relative to its influence on the local search marketplace.
Things like, where do the advertisers and ad dollars fit in?
[edited by: Chicago at 6:46 pm (utc) on Feb. 8, 2005]
I think it is a great move on google's part. Doing the search with no reference to the location but where you are on the map is something I never thought of. Here is where I would like to see google go with this.
You pull up GoogleMaps on your GPS enabled cell phone. it shows your location. Then you put in a search term, such as sushi. It then pinpoints all the locations on the map closest to you. The ability to do local search based on a GPS cell phone has to be in someones play book. If not whoever uses the idea, feel free to throw me a bone ;)
I find this an interesting spin on what has become a defacto standard, if that could be said, local search for G, Y and A9. With all of those tools you are contending with proximity scores and user ratings, description, etc. If you go to map.google.com and look for a business, G's know that location is your most important variable in the potential mix of variables when searching for a local business. In addition, they are presenting the information in a format where the mapping is primary. I like it, and I think it is a very interesting method of segmenting the local search user.
Observation on functionality:
I noticed that if you click on a business's website (or what is presented as their website which is often another directory) and then try to use the back button to get to your previous SERP on the Gmaps, you go back to the Gmaps home page and you have to enter in your search and potential filters all over again.
I don't like that. As user you loose your ability to quickly jump back and forth between the results set.
There's too much focus on the map to be useful. The thing is nifty for five or ten minutes while you move your mouse around in that "whoopie, woo woo woo" dizzying motion, but other than that...
The phonebook doesn't have a large map on every page in the phonebook.
*shrug* Advertising dollars fit in in the usual places. Maybe logos for POIs, but other than that, the normal Adwords PPC at the top blah blah blah.
Their data is markedly bad.
I do expect the "yay Google!" press in the next few days. Zawodny has already started with the "Mapquest is dead" crap.
|The phonebook doesn't have a large map on every page in the phonebook. |
Jake, come on now, we can't start using the print phone book as our measure for success in an interactive medium. The phone book doesn't have have a big map on every page because it's not feasible. The phone book also doesn't have proximity, user reviews, nor large amounts of meta data. But these are all good things when you talk about searching for local buisness.
I agree, that Gmaps isn't revolutionary (although the drag feature is pretty cool compared to the click and move feature of other web-based maps). Nor do I think that years for mapquest dominance in getting driving directions is going to swept away because G enters the fray. However, if a user is looking specifically for a business type within a specific radius, this method of presentation is intriguing. I think there is a good percentage of the audience that will relate better to a big map with locations rather than a traditional SERP like G Local.
|Advertising dollars fit in in the usual places. Maybe logos for POIs, but other than that, the normal Adwords PPC at the top |
agreed normal adwords and possibly enhanced meta data or logo on the map would be the monetization. At least for the time being.
I'm also wondering how long it will take G to replace their current GLocal mapping functionality with this one.
|Jake, come on now, we can't start using the print phone book as our measure for success in an interactive medium. |
Oh, I'm not. But the thing has had 100 years of research, and shouldn't be totally ignored. I think that map is too prominent.
Going a bit of the subject here, but I cant wait to see the UK version. Map Sites are a very useful tool for me and many others.
Yes maps.GOOGLE will be another great revenue source for Google in the future. Google will be so powerful in the future I recon maybe more than Microsoft if it keeps its head.