It just gets better and better

related_searchWe just released a new version of which has a bunch of enhanced features for businesses and for consumers.


Here’s the skinny:

– Related searches – When you get a results page following a search, you’ll notice a new panel called “Related searches” (top right of the page), click on related business tags or location tags to perform a related search.  When you click a related business tag or related location tag uses an algorithm to substitute the new tag with one of your previous keywords, making an intelligent guess as to which keyword(s) to replace.  Give it a try, see what you think.  <b>Business Owners</b>, make the most of this by adding more relevant tags to your business listing so you come up in more places in results, helping new customers more easily find your business.

– Changes for Claimed Businesses – Last month we allowed you to lock your business listing when you claim it (this now happens automatically when you claim your listing) but we still allowed people to update your tags.  This month we’ve changed it so that others can ADD relevant tags (which enhance your ability to get found) but they can’t edit your existing tags (thereby undoing the great tagging that you’ve spent time on).

– Anyone can invite reviews – This is in keeping with our ethos of NOT making it mandatory to register to do the most common actions.  In this way we allow business owners and customers to invite others to review businesses without having to first register, thereby making it easier to get and give great testimonials.

– Changes to our search algorithm – We’re making some important changes to our search algorithm to present better and more relevant results to users.  Business owners, this means you’ll get found more often (so long as your tags are relevant of course).  Whilst we don’t publish our algorithm the main changes are improving the priority of businesses that have bought the priority listing promotion, improving support for accented and special characters, adding a positive weighting to recently modified/added/reviewed business listings (business owners, be sure to update your pages/tags/reviews regularly to benefit from this).

– Improved search engine indexing – One for the business owners… we already benefit from great organic SEO in the major search engines (meaning: being listed in helps your business get found all over the web) and we’ve just made some further tweaks which are improving that still further.  Generally these relate to improving the way that the site is organized and therefore improving the visibility and usefulness of pages for the major search engines as well as users.

– Improved claim process – We’ve simplified the claims process, making it easier and faster to claim your business listing as well as helping you configure any promotions.  It’s now much simpler to add photos, videos, and detailed text to your business listing, plus it’s more obvious how you can go back and update them to keep your business page fresh and engaging.

– Bigger photos and videos in reviews – We’ve doubled the size of photos and videos in reviews, so now it’s easier to see what the reviewer wanted you to see, and for reviewers your photos and videos are much clearer for viewers.  Previous photo and video reviews are not dynamically resized, but its easy to update your past reviews with new (or the same) photos or videos which will display in the new larger size.

– MUCH improved help pages – The new help pages provide answers to every single question we’ve ever been asked.  And as new questions come along we’ll update the help pages accordingly.

– Improved ‘contact us’ page – In concert with the new help pages this gives you a ‘first port of call’ by pointing you to the most commonly asked questions in the help pages (the fastest way to get answers to common questions), plus gives you a mean to get in touch so we can answer any questions that are not covered in the help pages.

That’s about it for now, I’ll have more news in about 3 weeks when we release the next set of improvements for you.  Remember to keep your business listing up to date, and help us spread by telling friends and colleagues.

All the best