It was a year ago April that Google made the first public announcement regarding the number of claimed Places listing. The number came in at 4 million worldwide. Yesterday at the BIA/Kelsey ILM West conference, Jeff Aguero noted that Google Places now has 8 million claimed Place Pages (out of 50MM worldwide). It was just this past March that Marissa Mayer, speaking at SwSX, noted that there were 6 million claimed Places.
The ability to claim a business listing was first rolled out in March of 2005 with the launch of Dashboard precursor, the Google Local Business Center. These four data points allow for some interesting analysis of the “run rate” at which Google is creating a direct relationship with business locations worldwide.
Here is a chart showing the growth since inception (U.S. data is estimated).
Some thoughts about the graph:
With 8 million sign ups Google has the largest direct relation with SMBS of any local service
This amounts to 16% of all business locations worldwide
The growth during 2010 was ~2 million,
Business were claiming their listing at a rate of 167,000 per month
From March of this year until today, Google added 2 million more businesses
The growth rate since March has been 250,000 new claimants per month
Obviously we are depending on Google for the numbers. We don’t really know how many businesses there are worldwide (I am sure that Google’s estimate is very approximate) and we don’t really know how Google is counting the 8 million. Does it include inactive accounts for business that are no longer active? Does it count twice businesses that have been claimed twice?
While there may be some questions surrounding the specifics of the numbers, the direction and rates seem pretty clear. As Everett Dirkson is purported to have said: A million here, a million there, pretty soon it adds up to real money. That certainly seems to be the case here.
Two years ago we released the Page Speed browser extension and earlier this year the Page Speed Online API to provide developers with specific suggestions to make their web pages faster. Last year we released mod_pagespeed, an Apache module, to automatically rewrite web pages. To further simplify the life of webmasters and to avoid the hassles of installation, today we are releasing the latest addition to the Page Speed family: Page Speed Service.
Page Speed Service is an online service that automatically speeds up loading of your web pages. To use the service, you need to sign up and point your site’s DNS entry to Google. Page Speed Service fetches content from your servers, rewrites your pages by applying web performance best practices, and serves them to end users via Google’s servers across the globe. Your users will continue to access your site just as they did before, only with faster load times. Now you don’t have to worry about concatenating CSS, compressing images, caching, gzipping resources or other web performance best practices.
In our testing we have seen speed improvements of 25% to 60% on several sites. But we know you care most about the numbers for your site, so check out how much Page Speed Service can speed up your site. If you’re encouraged by the results, please sign up. If not, be sure to check back later. We are diligently working on adding more improvements to the service.
At this time, Page Speed Service is being offered to a limited set of webmasters free of charge. Pricing will be competitive and details will be made available later. You can request access to the service by filling out this web form.
Whether you’re scrambling for a father’s day gift or planning your own summer travel, you can get the gift that keeps giving by updating your (and your dad’s) Garmin’s maps during Map Update Season. That way, whenever you’re exploring somewhere new or tackling your daily commute, you’ll know that you’re equipped with the most up to date maps available! And it’s a simple investment that helps pay for itself through potential savings of fuel and time – just check out Navteq’s Savings Calculator for a glimpse at the numbers.
Our periodic map updates give you the most accurate, most detailed map data available from NAVTEQ with more than 8 million miles of road coverage and nearly 6 million points of interest across North America. Updating your maps is quick and easy, and we offer two great update options from which to choose (read more below for details). And if you’re within the first 60 days since first acquiring satellites with your Garmin, check out our nüMaps Guarantee to see if a free map update is available.