Says Sheryl Sandberg, VP Global Online Sales & Operations, at a recent investor Q & A in New York City: "If you did a search for 'New York deli' when I joined Google four and a half years ago, the only thing you would have gotten from Google was the long list of probably the history of delis in New York, it wouldn't have been relevant for you at all. If you did that same search today on our home page you'd get some nice local listings at the top. If you did that search on maps you'd get markers saying where delis were, you'd get local business ads, and you might even get a coupon to use at one of these delis."
Sounds like a win-win deal for Google and Mom and Pop. But it's a deal that should have some watching their backs. Brian White over at AOL's Money & Finance blog thinks Google is hell-bent on becoming one of the world's largest advertising networks, particularly given its recent acquisition of dMarc Broadcasting (i.e., radio auto-inserted ads) and its push to put AdWords on mobile phones.
Imagine the advertising power your local deli could have with all that.