Local Search

LocalGuides.com : Local + Social + Vertical

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.