Google has transformed Google+… Again!
Only this time, it is more simple, streamlined and mobile-friendly. According to Google, they are focusing on simplified navigation and improved search.
Getting Around Google+
There is a very small info icon in the lower right side of the banner image, to the left of “Following.” Clicking it reveals a minimal amount of “About” information. You can find people with similar interests and content within “Communities.” Their “Collections” area is growing quickly and is focused on niche groups or interests.
What About Local Search?
Searchers receive most all of the information they need about a local business through their search results pages. Google has determined that very few visitors to your website come through Google+ Local pages. Google+ Local pages are mainly used by business owners or their SEO team to manage their business information. Nothing has changed in the way that Google delivers local business search and map results other than the fact that more local and map results are available than ever before.
In fact, you can see in our image above, that when you search PPGWebSolutions, the results include the Local Finder page (right) as well as many other results. When we search for Web Design Indianapolis, the search returns the three pack on the left, including maps.
How Does it Impact My Local Business?
Google’s focus on local hasn’t diminished in any way. In fact, everything they are doing is about improving local search for your local business. Local search optimization is as important as it ever has been.
Google My Business has not changed and you should continue using your dashboard to manage your business information. Google will continue to reveal the data within your dashboard in search results, therefore, you will want to be sure it remains current.
Are You Leveraging Local Optimization for Your Business?
These most recent statistics should help convince you to maximize your search engine optimization efforts, specifically Local Search:
- 97% of consumers use the internet when researching local products/services (Source: BIA/Kelsey)
- 43% of consumers search every month for a local business (Source: BrightLocal Local Consumer Review Survey, 2015)
- The number one reason for an online search is to find the location of a ‘known’ business (Source: comScore, Neustar Localeze, 15 Miles – Local Search Study, 2014)
- 78% of mobile searches for local businesses result in a purchase (Source: Local Search Association Conference, 2014)
- Local Search delivers better ROI than all other online channels (Source: BrightLocal Clicks & Calls Survey, 2015)
- 34% of SEOs/SMBs would choose Local search above any other marketing channel (Source: BrightLocal Clicks & Calls Survey, 2015)