Houston, TX (PRWEB) October 2, 2006
Human powered and automated local search are key trends for 2007, yet few internet users even know what they are yet. Newcomers like ChaCha.com trying to cash in on the trend, as are older human local search engines like AskPoodle.com. Human powered search is probably going to revise the way much internet advertising is conducted, while. search engine optimization will remain the silent support engine behind it all. 123interface.com is a leader in in innovating as well as identifying search engine optimization and paid search trends and sees this as an important area for investment for advertisers, both big and small.
Marketers and advertisers are scrambling to understand and make use of local search. A recent article in sums it up by laying out the ComScore data (http://www.axcessnews.com/modules/wfsection/article.php?articleid=11380), noting that local search is on the rise and apparently the strongest new trend. All told, local search may be the most important new trend on the internet, seeming to go backward, but actually it is a mere simplication of what the internet was always supposed to be, an interconnecting net of local sites. Naturally Google and Yahoo are jumping on board, as another article by ClickZ.com's Patricia Hursh explores (http://www.clickz.com/showPage.html?page=3623538).
Back in 1998, while other search engines were sleeping snugly in their beds, the founder of local-search-innovating AskPoodle.com, Luis Pereira, was in the basement laboratory cooking up something new and revolutionary. Search engines had gotten soft and complacent, ready and willing to allow automation to eliminate tasks that humans were more responsible with (if only because humans could more easily be held accountable for what they do). Click fraud, the bogeyman that is haunting Google and similar vendors these days, is far from a moot point in internet advertising. What innovators like AskPoodle.com and tuned-in newcomers like ChaCha.com both seem to understand is that the public sympathy for faceless, globalized, irresponsible modes of capitalism are becoming very unpopular amidst an increasingly self-conscious corporatization of anything and everything under the sun. ROI on AdWords is good for some, but arguably atrocious for the rest of advertisers currently relying on them. It’s business at a mighty high price, when the non-conversion clicks and the fraudulent competitor and prank clicks are all tallied up at the end of the day. Local search gained steam as click fraud made headlines
Who pays for all those false clicks? At first the businesses do, but then, almost overnight, the customer ends up with the bill. Click fraud gets tucked away in the bill for most products, quite naturally, as advertisers realize the shadow side of pay per click -- click fraud and do-nothing clicks. What local search and specifically human powered local search offer the search engine user is a way to more accurately find what they need with human assistance, while obtaining quality service like in the olden days, before computers even existed -- the days when you drove up the gas station and you got your windows cleaned just for stopping by. Local search brings back nearer to such a customer-oriented experience -- on the impersonal internet, where no one really ever would have expected it.
How can the business owner and the consumer avoid being victimized by click fraud? Local search and human powered search are certainly very strong alternatives. Programs like those of human local search originator, AskPoodle.com, allow local search vendors to use the internet like an interactive phonebook, with pay per call or pay per chat options to allow them to handle consumer inquiries, just as if they’d walked in the doors of a local storefront. That’s a lot of power to wield electronically. Unlike letting one’s fingers do the walking through a phone directory, local human powered search allows the consumer to not only find out who makes the widget in question, but even to visit a site, if one exists, where they can view the widgets before asking a question about them, all from an online chat session. The searcher can also copy and paste text from the internet and ask, in chat, if the store has the item in stock (inventory is still a problem for many online storefronts, remarkably). It adds another layer or two of interaction that just wouldn’t be as convenient over the phone, or even in person for that matter. And, certainly, no one doesn’t like saving a trip to a store just to be turned away empty-handed. Regional / local search solves that problem.
Search marketing services involving regional optimization, similar to those offered by 123interface.com (http://www.123interface.com), are beginning to flood the market, but in many cases these are relatively new outfits with startup capital, often without any actual human experience with regional search engine optimization. Care should be taken to go with a local search oriented company that has not just landed into the pond offering vague promises. A solid internet marketing program with regional as the focus will steadily bolster long-term regional ranking results, while also addressing your conversion strategies and building brand value. In the short-term, however, it is wise to also use a firm like AskPoodle.com or like-minded newcomers (Ask.com, ChaCha.com, etc.) to get the leads on Pay per Action (Pay Per Call or Pay Per Chat) basis. Unlike Pay Per Click, Pay Per Call and Pay Per Chat only require vendors to pay for actual sales opportunities between the prospect and a human commission-seeking sales agent with something to prove. This makes pay per action a strong ally of regional search marketing for the near future, as both seek to provide better ROI to the advertiser, and since both have nothing invested in the sinking Pay Per Click Titanic. Jump ship and board local and regional search. For most smaller businesses, it's a matter of sink or swim.