Google’s latest update to how it displays search results impacts the local pack, often referred to as the “7-pack.” Now, instead of showing seven results in the local pack, Google shows only three local results. This change has led to a large increase in how often the local pack appears in the number one spot. While the 7-pack occupied the number one spot in only 25% of searches, a recent study shows that the 3-pack appears in this spot 93% of the time.
This change also impacts the way users access information through the local pack. In the 7-pack, contact information was listed directly in the local results box, and users could see an address or phone number without interacting with the search engine. With this update, Google no longer shows a full address or phone number, forcing desktop searchers to click into the local results box to access contact information. Clicking into the results box takes users to a maps page with additional listings and information. On a mobile browser, users still have the ability to call the business directly from the local pack, but the full address no longer appears.
So what does this mean for your business? If you’re in Google’s local pack, you can expect more traffic, calls and clicks since users see this information as relevant and trustworthy. If you’re not in Google’s 3-pack or the subsequent results on the maps page, you can take some steps toward optimizing your local listing and overall web presence to increase your chances of appearing. You can also take a look at your search campaign as Google still shows ads either above or beside its pack.
What are your thoughts about Google’s update? Are you pleased with the changes? Let us know in the comments.