Classified aggregator LiveDeal has been on a roll this year in bringing new content into the fold to become more competitive as an overall local search destination. First it brought directory listings (via YP.com acquisition of LiveDeal) to complement its classified listings, then it brought in social media (classified discussion boards), then video.
Now the site has gone further down the social path by bringing in review content from Yelp. This will simply syndicate Yelp’s reviews to the appropriate local listings in LiveDeal. This will happen on a listing-specific basis, but there is no indication whether there will also be city-specific pages that feature top businesses and Yelp reviews.
That scenario might represent an opportunity to create a means for local discovery in addition to search, a formula that is present to some degree on the company’s home page and is core to its aggregation model.
Overall this continues a general trend for LiveDeal to be more than just a source of online classifieds. This is generally in line with the online trend toward blended search, or universal search as Google likes to call it. Compared with the traditional media world where content is siloed into different buckets (classifieds, news, directory listings), users are coming to expect lots of different formats and sources of content in one place online.
For LiveDeal, these features increase stickiness and also work toward solving the general challenge of monetizing free online classifieds. Here the opportunity exists to blend featured listings for local businesses with classified searches in a way that is complementary (i.e., results for used cars served with local dealership listings). Video and social features meanwhile boost the appeal of the site experience for users.
Oodle has a similar formula for monetizing free classifieds where it serves featured classified listings in relevant search results for its local aggregated listings. The company, in fact, is working on a number of improvements to make the way its data are structured and served in search results more intuitive. In a conversation yesterday, CEO Craig Donato explained this and a number of enhancements to the site we should see soon, which I can’t discuss yet.
We’re also scheduled to talk with LiveDeal CEO Rajesh Navar soon to dive deeper into the site’s progress toward becoming a more attractive and broadly competitive local search destination. More to come.