Wednesday, April 6, 2011

MerchantCircle Gets Serious about Improving Local Search and Site Quality

Chalk it up to the sweet smell of the Spring… Or maybe it's our excessive passion for building the very best tools for local business owners- either way, the MerchantCircle team is excited to share the details of our seasonal clean up.

As a free platform offering User Generated Content (UGC) opportunities, we know that we're sometimes subject to users posting low-quality content. In an effort to strengthen the network and provide the best experience for both our merchants and our consumer audiences, the MerchantCircle team has taken some serious strides to improve local search quality, and better connect local merchants with local customers.

Our community of over 1.6 million (really awesome) merchants provides the cornerstone for ensuring quality content. These guys know their stuff so they're now empowered to flag profiles and material that doesn't meet MerchantCircle expectations. 

Vice President of Product and Marketing, Darren Waddell remarked, "We recognize the asset we have in a community of intelligent, vocal, and passionate business owners. We wanted to give them input on what they see during their daily MerchantCircle engagements."


We've also recently rolled out a new Merchant Quality Score (MQS) program that will aid us in identifying low-quality content throughout the site. The system is comprised of multiple touch points in conjunction with scores to give an overall index to all User Generated Content generated on MerchantCircle. This proprietary algorithmic approach also ensures that spam or adult content can't make its way to MerchantCircle.

"The new algorithm is easily adaptable to catch both existing and new low-quality content, through a combination of intelligent filters and specific triggers that we have implemented throughout the site," said Director of Product Management, Dennis Hu. "We'll continue to roll out more protective features throughout MerchantCircle to leverage our user base and have our community help us ensure quality content creation." 

Today we also announced our partnership with search- quality leader Blekko, who will help us improve quality by providing a broad, third party perspective that only a search engine could deliver.

Additionally, MerchantCircle members will help curate Blekko's new "/small business" slashtag- offering helpful resources and top-notch sites that will add a needed merchant perspective to searches of this type.

The slashtag search for local businesses is now available in the MerchantCircle dashboard, alongside the new Bloglines RSS reader.  Both additions help local businesses find high quality local and business information

We're dedicated to creating the very best user experience and we're excited about these latest improvements. Thanks for being a part of the MerchantCircle family and for all the feedback that has helped us make MerchantCircle the largest online network of local business owners.


  1. Nice.. Thanks for sharing waiting for next post.

  2. That's a great news indeed. This will improve the search quality and visits to the site.