The new Google places results page and how it will affect your estate agency SEO
03 November, 2010 | Web design
Last week Google introduced its new results page for local businesses. Now for any geographically targeted business search (for example – “Estate Agents in London”) you will get a results page with more local businesses.
How it’s changed?
Before for these types of searches Google would have displayed a map with five or six estate agents pinpointed by their listed location. This map is now featured at the top right of the page above the sponsored links. This map is also active and as the page scrolls down the map will remain visible.
Where the map was originally is now more local estate agents results, with these results you also get a list of their reviews, the usual Meta description, contact information and their location pinpointed on the map. This type of search was previously available if you had opened the Google places search.
Moving the map to the top right of the page will also give more available top positions for Estate agents websites and less for estate agency portals.
This change to Google results page has remodelled the way we implement optimisation for local business search as Google’s algorithm seems to be basing its ranking on a combination of local places rankings and the organic positions although the ranking still appears to focus more on natural SEO (which will still give portals a chance to rank in front of local estate agents).
How can you benefit more from this?
The new Google results page gives local businesses more exposure and will focus more on the geographical location then the pure size of the website. Also meaning if you are placed outside of the city map you will be demoted in rankings but this will help stop businesses faking where their business is based.
How will this affect your ranking?
If your estate agency is already ranking locally, the change shouldn’t be a problem. It may even automatically bump you up a position or two.
The change isn’t fully complete yet and tweaks and updates to the algorithm will occur over the next few months.
But Google is becoming more and more location orientated, so businesses really can’t overlook the importance of local optimisation.
By Luke Stanley