Following closely behind its integration of Citysearch content (including reviews) last month, Local.com announced today that it will integrate 2 million reviews from Yelp. This was made possible by Yelp’s recent release of its API for local search sites to build mashups and pull in its reviews. LiveDeal recently did the same.
With this move, and many of its recent developments, Local.com is doing exactly what it should be in the crowded local search space: differentiating itself with more content. Related to the general “universal search” trend online, users are coming to expect more sources and formats of content in their local search experiences.
Reviews are one of the fastest growing pieces to this puzzle and this was a logical step for Local.com. Expect video integration — another important piece of the universal search trend — to follow closely behind for Local.com and many others that haven’t yet integrated it.
“Our strategy is to be content aggregator first,” Peter Hutto, Local.com VP of business development and sales, told me a few weeks ago. “There are lots of different forms of content out there, and you’ll see us make a broad range of deals to bring in content, such as deals we’ve formed with Superpages and Citysearch. Part of this will be to aggregate video from other folks.”