Not surprisingly, Foursquare plans to announce Monday that it has made tweaks and improvements to its desktop listings for local businesses, highlighting once again that the company has moved beyond convincing people to become mayor of something and is doubling down on local search.
“You don’t need to check in to use Foursquare. Over the past few months, we’ve seen Explore use double,” the company wrote in a press release. “With billions of data points, we can always help you find the best places to go.”
The updates coming to Foursquare.com on Tuesday primarily reorganize the information on the business listing pages, making them easier to digest and putting important information like photos and hours more centrally located. The pages will include which of your friends have checked into locations (if you’ve logged in), suggest other places to go in the area, and share locations you’ve found with friends.
With Foursquare still struggling to find its footing several years and funding cycles down the road, it’s clear from the most recent mobile update that its best path to making money will come by challenging Yelp in the realm of local search. And if you’re going to challenge Yelp, you need a solid desktop presence.
Many people might be unfamiliar with Foursquare’s desktop site at all, but it’s actually been around for a while now, and the company said it gets more than 50 million visitors per month. Most of the changes to the business listings this Tuesday are design improvements, but as a Foursquare representative noted, the company hasn’t re-designed the listings since November 2011, when it launched Foursquare.com; they’re due for an update.
Here’s an example of the new desktop listings on the left and the old version on the right (click to enlarge):