Google now searches 'Nearby' your location

Ronny Kerr · February 26, 2010 · Short URL:

Local search gets an added feature that lets users find places and events around them

Google announced on Friday morning a new 'Nearby' search filter that will let users search for specific places in their immediate area.

Using this new tool will allow users to make local-centric searches (like "things to do on st. patrick's day," "food blogs," "farmers market," or "dmv"), which will return information, events, and businesses actually relevant (because nearby) to the user making the search.

The feature can be found simply by clicking the "Show Options..." link on the regular results page, scanning down to the second "All results" section, and clicking the link "Nearby."

The previously returned results will then change to a new set of results specifically centered on one's location, determined by IP address. For example, when I searched for "italian restaurants," it came up with four businesses right here in Claremont, listing a few others further away, in La Verne and Montclair.

One can also switch to a custom location by clicking that link in the options sidebar and typing a new location.

"Location has become an important part of the way we search," writes Product Manager Jackie Bavaro, as she offers just one possible use for the new search tool. "If you're a foodie looking for restaurant details, food blogs or the closest farmer's market, location can be vital to helping you find the right information."

Notably, this kind of local searching has been available to mobile users for some time now, which makes some sense. Bringing the feature to desktop computers, Google shows that it has truly recognized the power of local Internet services for all users.

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