Calling all local businesses! Listen up – there’s been some big changes to Google’s local search listings recently. Thankfully, our expert geeks have been paying a close eye on them so you don’t have to! So, what’s it all about? Well, a major change in the way Google sorts its local search listings happened earlier this month. Basically, local businesses will now be listed on the search engine results page slightly differently. The new update has replaced the “local 7-pack” where seven local businesses were featured on Google’s search results. This has now been chopped down to three local businesses, hence the new name “local 3-pack” view.
If this all sounds rather complicated, it’s really not. Just know this: while the SEO industry has been rocked with the news on how these changes will affect local business listings and traffic, making a few small changes to your website could put you in a better position than ever before when it comes to attracting new customers. Interested in generating new leads? Encouraging clients and customers to visit your web pages? Improving your bottom line? This is the article for you. Here we’re going to tell you how Google’s new changes will affect you, and what you can do to become a local SEO superstar. Our team of geeks are here to help you, so don’t despair!
The new changes have been rolled out in the UK and internationally simultaneously and have changed the way businesses are listed on Google results. Now only three businesses are shown (before the update, local listings were available in ‘packs’ of 3, 5, or 7). Basically, there’s room for fewer local businesses to advertise their services on the main results page than before. This makes the competition even more fierce.
In addition, Google has removed the exact addresses and phone numbers from their listings, and will now only show the name of the street where your business is located. Search users are no longer provided with your contact information and will need to look for it themselves. Another change is that Google has disabled ‘one-click’ access to find out this contact information, and all links to Google My Business pages have been removed. When you click on a business listing on the search engine results page, it now opens a new view with a map, a version of the old local card, and a list of 20 other competitors.
WHAT WILL THIS MEAN FOR YOUR BUSINESS?
You might think these new changes will have huge ramifications for your business. But there’s no reason to panic just yet. The impact of Google’s latest has yet to be seen, and while it might seem that Google has made it harder for local businesses to advertise their services, there could be more opportunities for more companies. Which is a win-win for everyone involved. Here are some of the changes:
Our team of geeks have analysed the new Google changes to see how they will affect your search rankings. Here are some of the best ways to take advantage of the new update in order to increase leads, maximise profit, and improve your bottom line.
The first thing is not to panic if your website is not listed in the local pack. As we said before, the new pack is based on providing information to users based on their physical location, so different people in the same area could be presented with different search results. However, these changes will make it harder to track your websites and find out where the appear on the SERP. For example, you might find that your business appears on the SERP when you type in a particular search query, but this might not be the same for all of your customers.
Even if you are listed in the top 20 websites, this doesn’t mean you can rest of your laurels. In fact, you will need to come with an eye-catching snippet to attract the attention of prospective leaders. Remember – when a consumer is looking for the contact details of one of your competitors, they might come across your snippet and decide to visit your page instead. Keeping your snippet informative and interesting can be a great way to drum up business and attract customers away from your biggest competitors. Make sure you take some time and create a compelling description.
Although a direct link to your Google My Business page is no longer available, most of the information from your listing will be used to create your local business card. This includes your phone number, address, street view, images, and other useful information. So, how can you use this to your advantage? By reorganising and come up with a great Google My Business listing.
Before we start let’s see what the big G has to say about “Ranking of local results on Google”
Here are some tips on how to do this:
SEO is still really important and can affect your local listings in the same way as before, even though the new update isn’t an algorithm change. Most of the old SEO techniques still apply, so you should take some time to find out whether your on-page SEO is still working for you. Here are some of the things you should be looking out for.
Yes, it can be frustrating when you’ve optimised your on-page SEO, sorted out your business listings and updated your social media profiles to find yourself faced with another challenge – a new Google SEO update! However, it doesn’t have to be an obstacle. Following these few simple tips will help you revolutionize your SEO and attract more customers to your pages. Try and act as quickly as you can, especially as it can take a little while for your changes to be reflected on the SERP. SEO might seem like a constant battle at times, but the new changes from Google could affect your business in a positive way. With the SERP now customized based on a search user’s physical location, you could be attracting brand new customers who haven’t previously heard about your business. And whilst it’s still too early to ascertain whether these changes will transform local SEO for the better, optimizing your content now could put you in a better position than you’ve been. Give it a try!
If you would like the PurpleFruit team to review your Google local listing, please get in touch for a free NAP Consistency review