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Can locals be served locally for what they seek locally in towns of 10,000 - 50,000?
What about a county of 50,000 - 300,000, comprised of 10 - 20 townships? Can the vast majority of 'their local search needs' be served locally?
If the fight is for promoting businesses in my township to it's natural consumer base - my fellow townies, my fellow countymen - does my township need Google? Yahoo?
If people in my township worked quite sucessfully for years with the "local yellowpages directory" could they surive quite nicely with some more local version of search than Google?
If local can be served rather nicely 'locally' then what?
Where does the industry's current attention to local search get myopic? Disoriented? Twisted up in its own shorts and shortsightedness?
(In case you haven't noticed it's Devil's Advocate Day.)
Example, a gardener may travel further for a days work than a few hours. A pizza company is limited by delivery time, hence distance. A person wishing to buy shoes may go further for a larger range.
Each of these examples differ but there is one important piece of information to take. The company decides whether they travel to the client if it's a service and a local search should ideally indicate the companies prepared to offer such services TO that area. A search for products or services that a person will travel to should return results IN the area defined.