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Marchex released a report today that examines some of the opportunities in local search. The report is written on a basic level to educate a general marketplace on local online media and advertising (while not being overly promotional of Marchex).

It likewise reaches a few basic conclusions that we have examined here on the blog and in other TKG reports. A few of these include:

  • Companies wishing to have large-scale success in local search will need to own a critical mass of local traffic and a critical mass of local advertisers, either directly or through partnerships.
  • They will also need to provide comprehensive content and information across business listings and all locales, making it just as easy for consumers to find the perfect plumber in Poughkeepsie as it is to find the perfect hotel in New York City (this traditional data challenge has taken on new forms with user-generated ratings and reviews).
  • Local search providers will have to offer a variety of products and services at scale for SMB advertisers. While the bulk of local advertisers will not self-provision, they will become more sophisticated about local search and will require similar products and services to national advertisers, including analytics and services such as pay-per-call (this topic will be examined further in a report on selling search-based advertising, to be released later this week).

You can download and read the report here and see past coverage of Marchex here. The company also launched a new blog today called LocalPoint.

Also note the report is cowritten by Marchex lead search architect Matthew Berk, who will speak on the following panel on day 2 (next Tuesday) of The Kelsey Group’s DDC conference:

2:30 pm – 3:15 pm

Session A – Building a Better Database: Acquiring Content in a Dysfunctional Environment

Local business content is fragmented. And if anything, it is going to get worse. Learn the strategies publishers and third parties are using to compile meaningful content, particularly for use in online directories/local search.

Jeff Beard, President and General Manager, Localeze
Matthew Berk, Lead Search Architect, Marchex
Jon Cohn, Product Leader, Acxiom
Erron Silverstein, CEO and Founder, Solfo

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