Serious “localization” of the search engine results has been going on for a couple of years now, but this week Google morphed the results again entirely.
A lot has changed since I began learning about local search in 2007, and as you likely know by now, Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc. have all been aggressively separating their local listings from the organic search results for some time now.
If you have a brick and mortar location, whether you’re a single independent business, or part of a national franchise, there are specific steps you MUST take to be found by your potential customers.
Late last year I summarized some local search ranking nuggets of knowledge that came from local search guru David Mihm, and I learned more that one night than I learned at two days in California at SES Local 2007.
Just last month I moderated the session he gave on local search for SEMpdx, and if you were there, you’d know that earlier this year, Google began really pushing local, and for the past few months, even when searching for phrases without city names, Google has been mixing in local too, if they “determine your intent” to be a local search.
I don’t know if anyone saw this weeks changes coming – I wonder if it had much to do with Google’s Marisa Meyer moving to their “location based services”?
What’s New Today?
This week though, we’re not only seeing integrated local results, we’re actually seeing INDIVIDUAL MERGED results, where the organic listings and the Google Places results are seamlessly combined into a single listing!
Check out this 3 minute video – (The video player will maximize)
There’s still no consistency from city to city, or even industry to industry, but it’s pretty interesting nonetheless – don’t you?