Sunday, January 21, 2007

Local Search: The Relevance Dilemma – SOLVED

Proximity in local search is the most important factor in local search. Including city names, zip codes, area codes, and address does return hundreds of listings. It still doesn’t work 100% on our desktop pc and now we are rushing to put the same thing on our slowwww, mini-screen cell phones.

Mobile searching for local information is coming of age and will be a dominant factor in business advertising in the future. Whether we are seeking “local goods and services” in a city, township, or out in the country, we will depend more on our mobile appliances and less on our print media.

Zip codes are an unknown quantity in our car. We just drove 200 miles and now we are searching for lodging and restaurants. I am in a strange place, what is that zip code? I am in Chattanooga, how do I spell it since I don’t know the zip code? Let’s see, where is the zip code posted around here so I can complete my search? Pull into a gas station and ask, or find the post office, or you should have prepared for these little trials before you left home.

There is a better way. Local search needs its own set of “new codes” that are geographically meaningful. The new code should address the local proximity in an easy to recognize, unique, and easy to learn and understand methodology.

The “new code” should then be a short entry in the search box. The new address should relate to the business location on the ground and at the same time be the address searched for on the web. The savvy surfer, after 15 seconds of training will learn literally thousands of the new search codes and can apply them to any location. He/she can not do this with a zip.

But he will need help. All he has to remember is where he is or where he plans to be. What state? What highway will he travel and what exit (or road junction) is he interested in. Now you can see the importance of our road signs and maps and how they can carry over to the web.

We change the way the traveler thinks, by not changing the way he or she thinks.

Instead of keying in 40769 or Williamsburg, Kentucky the savvy individual already knows he is (or will be) in Kentucky. He is traveling on Interstate 75, and he is at (or will be) Exit 15 or Exit 11. Both exits are at Williamsburg and both are 40769. The “new code” is entered in the site search simply as “75ky15” or “75ky11”. A single page is returned guiding the visitor to the extremely local information, whether it be local food and lodging, a nearby park, local real estate, news, weather, or classifieds. Wherever the visitor goes, he knows how to locate truly local information on the web. The exit may be the way to continue on another route to a park or bed and breakfast many miles away.

Our database of “new addresses” contains all of the Interstate highways and exits in the US. Other minor road junctions and other countries are being added to our Directory of Unique Coded Geographical Location Search Terms by Burton R. Floyd, Jr. 2003-2007

Our Directory is proprietary. Site licenses for use on pc and mobile web sites are negotiable.

Additional information may be found at the beta site