Google’s new blended local search results may push your traditional organic listings much further down within the search results making it more important than ever to get a local result listed within the “blended” search results on google.com.
For a couple of years Google has often inserted a sample of local search results from Google Maps within the main search results on google.com such as the “7-pack” of local results in the screen shot below:
A: “7-pack” of local results from Google Maps within the main search results of google.com.
B: Beginning of the traditional organic results
New “Blended” Local Results
More and more Google has been “blending” local search results within the “traditional” organic listings such as in the screen shot below (Can I call something that hasn’t even been in existence for 20 years “traditional?). Often there will be two or three traditional organic results followed by seven local results. More traditional organic results follow below the local results. The map of the local results now appears in the top right corner of the page.
B: The first of the traditional organic results.
A: The local results from Google Maps now being “Blended” within the main search results of google.com.
Effects of New Local Results
If local search results are important to your organization then Google’s new blended local results have made it even more important to optimize your local listing(s):
Your Traditional Organic Results May Have Been Pushed Further Down Within The Search Results
The new blended local results take much more vertical space. They include quite a bit more information and often include images. This pushes the traditional results that follow below the local results much further down within the results. If you had a traditional organic listing(s) ranking well that listing may now be getting pushed much further down among the search results.
In addition, in the past many people would scan the pack of local results or scan the traditional organic results or both. Now that the local results are blended with the traditional organic results, they appear for many, I suspect, as one long list of results. So if you had a traditional organic listing in say position 4 it many now have in effect been pushed down to position 11.
Less People May Click To View Additional Local Results Within Google Maps
In the past there was a large text link to see more local results that was prominently displayed above the pack of local listings and another text link to see more local results below the pack (See the first screen shot above). Now there’s just the smaller text link at the bottom of the local results. I expect less people will click through to see more local results in Google Maps now.
The new blended local results have made it more important than ever to try to get a local result at the top of the search results within the listings Google displays on google.com
What you should do
Do some searches on Google’s main search page, google.com, on what you believe are some of your important search terms (keyword phrases) with and without the city/town, state names. If you see local results mixed in among the search results like in the above screen shots then you should work on improving your local search results to ideally get your listing to appear on google.com
For More Info
Video on how to check for your local search listings (from 2009 but still a good visual overview)