Google recently made a number of changes to how local search results are displayed. This calls for changes to your existing local SEO strategies. The series of major changes started when the search giant released a new display format for local search. There is no change in the search ranking algorithm. But Google changed the way local business info is presented on SERPs.
Change in Number of Local Results
Earlier, the search engine displayed different local and organic results. It displayed 7 local results that varied on the basis of the search query and location. But after the latest update, there are only 3 local results to be seen. The new local results are referred to as the Snack Pack or the 3-Pack.
Major Changes to Google’s Local Search Results
The notable changes in the new local search result display include:
- As already mentioned, there are 3 listings in place of 7. But there has been no impact on the number of organic search results.
- Because the local search results have been reduced from 7 to 3, you will have to increase your local SEO to maintain the same volume of traffic. This has become even more important because ads could take up more space above the fold.
- Google now has the format for mobile and desktop search results. But only the format is similar, the results may still be different.
- Google has added a large map to the local search. It takes up lot of space above the fold.
- Local search results will no longer display your physical address the way they used to.
- Google has also removed photos from a number of searches.
- Earlier, branded searches resulted in results with review stars. Google has changed it by not displaying review stars in most of these searches.
- The display of SERPs has also been changed significantly. It now varies based on the type of business.
The new 3-pack listing fits ideally into the new search-world where mobile has taken over desktop. The top 3 spaces make up most of the screen area for mobile users. In some local searches, Google map also takes up some space. Local searchers on desktop will also be able to enjoy the same experience as mobile searchers.
It is time you upgraded your local SEO strategies to ensure that your brand appears in the top results. Visit https://thesearchmarketingshop.com/search-engine-optimisation/ to get the services of the experts.