The latest local search developments

Sep 9, 2022 by
The latest local search developments

Local search has come a very long way in the last few years. Whereas local businesses once thought SEO was unattainable or a waste of time, it’s now powerful enough that 97% of people use Google to search for local businesses and 62% of users will completely disregard a local business if they can’t find it easily online.

The world of local search, however, is growing and improving at an exponential rate. So much so, in fact, that it might feel a little difficult to keep up with all the developments. That’s why we’ll be featuring a few of the more exciting recent developments below.

Google declaring products a local search visibility factor

A major update to Google’s official document on improving local search rankings recently revealed that you can now add individual products to your local search and this is a major visibility factor. This has undoubtedly been added to help Google compete with Amazon and one area where Google is comfortably trouncing their competition is in the local space. So, fill out your profiles with as many products as you can!

Earning a trusted store badge

That “blue tick” has been a badge of honour among Twitter users for years now as it represents authority and reliability. If a local business is able to earn this badge it will significantly boost its visibility but it’s not something you’ll be earning overnight. The badge is available to all merchants that provide exceptional shipping and return services and it takes a while for these metrics to add up. But as long as you ensure your service is impeccable and all orders are shipped immediately, you certainly stand a chance!

At this place

The “at this place” feature is still being tested but it could be a great way for local businesses based within larger establishments to get noticed. For example, if you operate a food truck stationed at a larger dining club area. The feature is a more granular local search feature that lets users search for individual elements within a venue and could be a very powerful tool for certain traders.

Google getting serious with bad review takedowns

One of the most frustrating blights of the local search game is bogus reviews sullying the reputation of a decent local establishment. These could be posted by online trolls, disgruntled former employees or (more commonly) local competitors. Thankfully, thanks to a new warning from the FTC that review platforms will be held accountable for the fake reviews they publish, Google has begun seriously cracking down on illegitimate reviews and that can only be a good thing for local businesses.

Eco-friendly benefits

Google is officially encouraging its local guides to focus on local businesses and services that are eco-friendly. This means that all reviews containing sustainability details will promote better search results. So, if you consider yourself a sustainable business, don’t be shy about it. If you allow customers to bring their own containers, use plastic-free packaging or have extensive vegan options then promote them as heavily as possible.