Many regions are known for different food specialties. I was curious to see where Yahoo Local and Google Maps would send me to try out some of these regional delicacies. This is a purely unscientific look at recommendations from those local searches.
Round One - New York Pizza
I’ve been told by many New Yorkers that you can’t get bad pizza in New York, because there are so many good pizza places. So, where do the search engines recommend that I go?
I can get Dominos anywhere, and Lombari’s looks pretty interesting.
Score: Google 1, Yahoo 0
Round Two – Kansas City, KS Steakhouse
Kansas City seems like the place to go for a good steak. Maybe it isn’t after looking at these results.
Google: Outback Steakhouse
Yahoo: Tyme Out Lounge-Steakhouse (link no longer available)
I don’t have to go to Kansas City to go to an Outback Steakhouse. But, if I were to judge on the basis of web sites, I might rather go to the Outback Steakhouse if I were in Kansas City.
Score: Google 2, Yahoo 0
Round Three – Baltimore, Maryland Seafood Restaurant
Maryland is the place to get Blue Crabs. Searching for a seafood restaurant should work.
Yahoo: Kawasaki Japanese Seafood Restaurant
Both destinations look great, and neither look like they might specialize in Blue Crabs. I’m a little surprised that Yahoo would serve me a sushi place, whereas Bertha’s looks like it has a lot of local character.
Score: Google 3, Yahoo 0
Round Four – Portland, Maine Lobster
I learned my lesson from my Baltimore search, in which I should have just tried “blue crabs” for my search term. If I’m going to Maine for Lobster, I’m going to search for Lobster.
This one is almost too close to call. I’m leaning towards the Yahoo result since it is actually in Portland, but I’d be tempted to drive a little further to the Lobster Shack based upon the reviews provided. There aren’t any reviews listed for the Yahoo recommendation. Both look like good recommendations, but I’m going to give the nod to Google, even though the Yahoo result is closer.
Score: Google 4, Yahoo 0
Round Five – New Orleans Creole Restaurant
Ok, if I’m going to New Orleans for a meal, I’d want to chow down on a nice Etouffe or gumbo. Where would Google or Yahoo send me?
Tough part about this one is that all of the results I saw from both search engines looked like they were worth a visit, even though they are different. It might be harder to find a bad restaurant than a good one in New Orleans.
Score: Google 4, Yahoo 0, tied 1
Round Six – Milwaukee fish fry
I’ve heard that a Wisconsin tradition is the Fish Fry. Someone tell Yahoo.
Google: Historic Turner Restaurant
Yahoo: Sorry, no fish fry found in or nearby Milwaukee, WI
Score: Google 5, Yahoo 0, tied 1
Round Seven – Philadelphia, Pa Cheesesteak
My own personal favorite is a little place in the Philadelphia Terminal Station. Let’s see what the searches say:
Google: Grande Olde Cheesesteak (no longer available)
Yahoo: Sorry, no cheesesteak found in or nearby Philadelphia, PA
Maybe most cheesesteak places don’t have websites, because the pickings were slim on both sides. But at least Google listed three places I could go for a Philly favorite.
Score: Google 6, Yahoo 0, tied 1
Yahoo is getting beat down pretty good. I’m going to invoke a mercy rule, and stop the competition at this point.
I’m not sure that the problem is due to the search engines or a lack of information about places to go.
If you own a restaurant, or any other business, you might want to list it in a local search engine. You don’t even need to have a Web site for many of them, including Google Maps and Yahoo Local.
Frank Fuchs of locallytype(d) has come up with a great page to help: Guide On How To Get Your Business Listed On Major Local Search Engines, Yellow Pages Sites and Social Local Networks. Great work, Frank.