Local Search, Simplified and Streamlined, Thanks to Tapl.io

August 8, 2011

10:05 am

We all have our favorite ways to find places to eat, shop or play.  But whether you are a religious Yelp user, or you strictly look for places your friends have checked-in to already on Foursquare, we all end up doing what Tapl.io co-founder Dave Riess calls the ‘Google Search Dance’.   We search for a location, and perhaps go read reviews on Yelp, then back to the search results we go, where we end up on a restaurant’s menu page, then it’s back to the search results, where we click through to FoodSpotting– we essentially navigate back to the results page to explore more content.  But now we can all stop dancing and get the real essence of a place using Tapl.io, instead of getting bits and pieces of information from various sites.

Tapl.io (Tap-Lee-Oh) is a browser extension and works by recognizing when a user visits a Tapl.io supported site and what specific place the user is browsing.  It then pulls profiles for that place on all other Tapl.io supported sites and presents them to the user in a very clean and neat set of browser tabs within the same window.  As co-founder Sam Beaudin puts it  “Tapl.io reweaves the web in a way that allows location-based services to work in unison and provides users with a collective web presence for all locations.”

There are two other features that make Tapl.io the most powerful way to search local– 1) Tapl.io exposes long tail content that search engines usually do not, and 2) it allows users to easily share the places they find.   Users can simply click on the share link, and the recipient will be able to view the shared place using Talp.io Test Drive if they have not yet installed the extension.

Tapl.io is currently in public beta, supporting Chrome and Safari, with Firefox and Internet Explorer coming soon.   At this time, Tapl.io has been integrated with CitySearch, Facebook Places, Foodspotting, Foursquare, Google Maps, Google Places, Hunch, MenyPages, New York Magazine, OpenTable, TripAdvisor and Yelp.

Tapl.io is just the starting point for the goals Dave and Sam have.  They are setting out to ‘defragment the LBS space, improve LBS UX, and bring meaningful developments to local search.’  They are busy working on these goals in their Brooklyn apartment or at General Assembly, so stay tuned.

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Julissa is a technology entrepreneur and writer on innovation and start-ups. She is co-founder of Common Equity, and leads the SocStock product team. She is passionate about innovation, travel and college football. You can follow her on twitter @julissaarce.

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