About

This is an AskTheLocal! blog, by the people behind AskTheLocal!, although it is pretty informal.  Sometimes we will write things here that are not official yet or may not be added to the main site.

In short, get the low-down about AskTheLocal! here…

AskTheLocal! is the UK’s first local shopping search engine.

4 responses to “About

  1. OOOOH how exciting…ive never been the first to add a comment…so i had better make it good!

    How would you promote the services of something like my site that links a number of local stores together under one umbrella?

  2. AskTheLocal definitely isn’t the first local shopping search engine. That accolade belongs to the first incarnation of abcaz.com (between 2001-2002), before they changed to just online price comparison. But during that time, I remember being able to search for products in more than 3,500 highstreet shops around Greater London. Well before its time.

  3. The definition of a local shopping search engine is to have a postcode input as well as a product input from the user. Since abcaz.com did not have the postcode functionality in 2001-2002, then it was simply a product directory of products in shops around Greater London, and not a local shopping search engine. In other words, because abcaz.com did not sort product results with respect to how close it was to your physical location/postcode, then it was not a local shopping search.

  4. Errr.. no. That’s exactly what abcaz.com did back in 2001/2.

    They had a live (ie up-to-the-minute) inventory of products that were available in 3,000+ multiple and independent ‘bricks-and-mortar’ (ie not online) shops across the London region (the pilot area).

    If you were searching for a new TV, for example, you had to enter your postcode to see the products (ie TVs) and prices that were available at that precise moment (ie actually in stock, not just listed as stock) in any of the real-world stores listed on the site, in or around your area. By default, these were all sorted by distance from your physical location.

    In fact, you couldn’t even use the site without entering your postcode. And that’s because the abcaz concept was ALL about searching locally, hence the name – the ‘abc’ (ie the easiest way) of the ‘a to z’ (ie searching locally). In its early incarnation (before it morphed into a purely online price comparison site in 2003), it was the original local shopping search engine – and, although both the technology and retailers’ knowledge and acceptance of the web have advanced immeasurably over the last 7 years, no other comparable service has even come close. Except, I would hope, for AskTheLocal! Good luck!!!

    (PS I know all this because – surprise, surprise – I used to work for the original abcaz.com, all those years back… and, as you might imagine, it was a truly fascinating and logistically frustrating rollercoaster of an experience…).

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