Phil Sim

Web, media, PR and… footy

Google launches Aussie blog

Google today unveiled an Australian-specific blog, which is apparently the first English-language country specific Google blog in the world.

You can also set up a personalised version of google.com.au with themes now, and the direction appears to be that Google is setting about getting local.

This is going to be important. I have no doubt that local search is going to be the single biggest growth area in the search market but to make local search work, you do need to work with the local communities and understand various cultural nuances and sensitivities. I’m expecting to see Google do a lot of work in this area.

Interesting, that Google would choose Australia to move ahead in this regard first. Australia’s a bit of a unique market in the regard that this is the only market in the world where Yahoo has set up a partnership with a local company, which it’s done here to form Yahoo!7. With both Microsoft and Yahoo having Australian partners, they have a clear advantage in starting down that local path if they can convert. For Google to compete here, they may have to more actively operate as a media company or at least have a higher presence. Maybe, that’s partly why we get the first local blog?

Filed under: Google

5 Responses

  1. alan jones says:

    “For Google to compete here…”? What the?😉 Google’s not really having any trouble competing here without becoming a media company Phil – in terms of online media revenue, they’re the market leader by a country mile in .AU.

    I think they’re building local products here because they like to. Really!

  2. Phil Sim says:

    I was referring specifically to local search Alan. That’s going to be a whole new ballgame and Google are swamped in terms of headcount compared to what ninemsn/yahoo7/newsltd.

  3. […] blogs, Weblogger Meetup Groups in Sydney and Melbourne seem to be much more active and now Google launches their first ever local blog here in Australia. These are pretty significant events that I think are reflective of a greater […]

  4. cat says:

    Lucky Australia. Over here in SEA itself, the only presence Google seems to have is in HK (which is a sales office, for crying out loud) and a so-called R&D center in Spore. I think one of the main reasons Google PR always eventually turn down request for comments is exactly because of that – there is no one in the country hence no one who could comment!

    Local presence in M’sia itself is next to nothing, tho they did mange to tie up with a local telco to offer mobile apps like email and some sorry excuse of a mobile local search – agreement is that every result the mobile search yields, will have the telco branding on it. Silly or what?
    Hoping that has changed since last i heard about it.

    From the Yahoo! side of things, they do admit a lot of legwork needs to be done for local search, at least in Malaysia. There’s also a lot of ground market activities of their Yahoo! Answers service. If it takes off, some form of effective local (albeit social)search might start here. And who knows…. maybe even integration with GPS and maps.

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