Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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Is Google getting ready to make a big move and following in Amazon's recent wake?

Update 4/10: See post #6 below for quote from David Mihm:
What Google’s Entry Into the Home Services Space Means for Local

A story just broke on Buzzfeed, which made me a little skeptical. Although I can see Google moving in this direction.

So Joy and I just asked our Google contacts. Basically we got a 'no comment' so...
we'll leave it up to everyone's imagination for now I guess. ;)

Here's the scoop!

<a href="">Google Eyes Home-Services Market - BuzzFeed News</a>

Google has a new product in the works that highlights the company’s growing interest in the home-services market, and may herald a broader move into it.

Sources close to the company told BuzzFeed News that Google plans to announce a new product aimed at connecting Google search users with local home-service providers — like plumbers and electricians — at an advertising conference later this spring. The product will be integrated into Google’s core search offering and is intended to capitalize on search intent, turning queries about home improvement tasks into engagement with home-service providers.

H/t to +Colleen Harris from our Pro Community and +Martin Shervington for the original story leads.

What do you think?

Truth or Rumor?

Opportunity or???

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Jan 6, 2015
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Pretty interesting. This directly takes on the likes of Yelp and Yellowpages. I think this will also fundamentally change the local SERPs with more focus for local packs. Also, I wonder if this, in extension, could mean we will have now have the ability to put up lead gen forms on our Google business pages - why have a website anymore if you can get leads sent directly to you from a Google+ page.

Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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Here is an interesting story angle:

<a href="">After Investing In A Local Services Startup, Google Turns Around And Builds A Competitor</a>

When Google GOOGL +0.8% Capital met local services company Thumbtack last year, its partner David Lawee assured the San Francisco startup?s cofounders that the search giant was not personally interested in expanding into the space. In fact, it was his word that helped Google Capital seal a deal to lead a $100 million round of investment into a company that helps connect users with service providers such as handymen, plumbers and wedding DJs...

Despite those earlier promises, Google Capital now finds itself in that exact awkward position. On Tuesday, Buzzfeed first reported that Google is working to create a new product in the home services market. Sources confirmed to FORBES that the Mountain View, Calif.-based technology giant is working on an offering through its ads team that will allow customers to connect with roofers and repairmen and put it in direct competition with Thumbtack and AMZN +1.24%, which launched its own home service provider marketplace last week.

I forgot that Google invested in Thumbtack... Hmmm...

Linda Buquet

Local Search Expert
Jun 28, 2012
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Here is an interesting take on this story over at StreetFight with quotes from David Mihm about his feelings about this move.

<a href="">What Google’s Entry Into the Home Services Space Means for Local |</a>

Moz‘s David Mihm isn’t convinced that Google will be able to keep focus enough to make this particular project work. He told us in an email:

We’ve seen this story before with Google and the small business market. Tags, Offers, Punchd, TalkBin, Helpouts…the lineup of products geared at small business owners that have been either discontinued or left to wither on the vine is pretty long. I think Google looks at most of their entries into monetizing the SMB market as experiments...

The on-demand services space is now almost as hot as the frenzy around daily deals a few years ago. Google probably feels they need a compelling offering to hold serve against increasing competition not only from Amazon (and likely Facebook), but also from Yelp, Thumbtack, and newer entrants. While the on-demand services market holds considerably more long-term promise than the daily deals market, I’m skeptical of Google’s long-term commitment to a serious standalone product in this space...

That was just a snippet of the quote from David and there is more good commentary over there from Todd Wasserman, so head over to read the full post.


Nov 19, 2012
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Interesting from a big business perspective, but also how it could impact Local and the Pac.

First the 30 million home contractors number from the article. That is interesting, its huge, I don't know where the source is or how they came up with it....but its a very very large number. Its large enough to certainly be compelling for all these different competitors to chase it: Google, Amazon, Angie's list, yelp, yellow pages, etc etc etc.

I thought there were 20 million local where does this 30 million sit vs that estimate???

2. If google merely establishes a way to separately monetize it...then it potentially eats into the importance of the PAC. All to be determined.

3. Its interesting: Google addressing it from search: Amazon addressing it via its huge customer base and ability to sell products and all the existing players, let alone organic search/the PAC. I think in so many ways Facebook is a potential player. They would need to monetize the reviews that FB people write that never get shown on their FB timelines.

4. When I searched for local plumbers in a number of suburbs of major "yelpish" cities, including one's outside of the West Coast, I was surprised at the very very strong serps presence of yelp with multiple organic rankings; sometimes above the PAC, sometimes below the PAC. So on search yelp is a real player and a potential, and per yelp advertising sales people they seem to make good money doing this and it works for the advertisers.

5. As David and others said, Google targets something...then drops the ball. But 30 million. That is a big worthwhile target!!!! Its worth it to keep the focus on if it in fact is of that size.

Heh...if that is so....Google needs to get some of that $$$$$. ;)
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