Just recently on July 24, 2014 Google rolled another Algorithm update called PIGEON, (name given by Search engine Land in absenteeism of an official name from Google) which is a major local search algorithm.
Data had shown that it has initially impacted local listings in Google maps and Google Web Search queries made in English through the US and that apparently had favored local business over local brands.
For what is said, this new update has not settled yet completely and we have not entirely seen the overall results and impact, even data shared by Linda Buquet at Local Search Forum shows that currently Google continues testing more versions of these new update.
So the main question here is; how can businesses overcome this new update? What needs to be considered to be able to re-gain the lost traction?
- Remember to be listed in Google My Business
- Be sure to be listed in main directories like YELP
- Continue engaging through social media.
- Good management of your listings
- Good old SEO.
From the list mentioned above, I want to talk about one in particular, as it has become so clear that now customers do not only want to be on that first page, but more than ever to be in Google listings. It is clear the need to be visible and to be part of that “prestigious list” and for that matter you need to be aware of Google’s guidelines to have a well-integrated profile that can guarantee your success. The information is basic, but is crucial too. Be sure to have:
- Complete name of your business
- Complete address (PO Box is not valid)
- Phone Numbers
- Hours of operation
- Brief description of what your business is about, so customers can identify what you do.
- Images and videos
- Reviews (Can’t be bought and Google has very clear rules and policies to get them).
Time will tell how much more this new update is going to affect the rankings and we will be paying close attention to what Google is going to reveal. This is part of our industry, an industry that never ceases to amaze me, as we have become more and more dependable than that great giant “Google” for the critical success of our clients.