Local SEO: Searcher Proximity and how it affects your local business

Feb 23, 2017 | Inbound Marketing


We’re keeping it fresh at Creative Two to keep you updated with all sorts of awesome SEO topics and today I have a really interesting one for you. Have you noticed that when you search on google for a local service it seems to be showing businesses that have no website, no reviews nor a google+ page? No ranking whatsoever! Well that’s what we’re all calling Google’s proximity implementation that has been going on for several months in the past.

So what the heck is going on?

Google is getting more serious about providing the best results to it’s visitors when they are on their mobile devices searching for a local business. With the recent google search engine update back in September 2016 named “possum”  it seemed to have really sky rocket this proximity factor. What does this mean exactly? When you search on your mobile device google picks up your exact location and shows results based on proximity (what is near to you). This is why all these other businesses with no ranking are popping up within the local pack. Darin Shaw at Moz is saying that “For most local searches these days, proximity appears to be weighted more than links, website content, citations, and reviews in the local pack rankings.”

To be honest this is a good thing for people searching and even for local businesses but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a website, reviews and a google+ page. Why? Well because human beings still want to see your website, reviews and google+ page to make their final decision. If the other 2-3 competitors have ranking factors and you don’t, guess what? Yes, you lost a potential customer/client to your competitor. It’s just getting more competitive when it comes to Local SEO. Remember, all these things work together to create more traffic and conversions for your business.

Bet you are wondering if this might work on desktops and the answer to that is, yes! But it’s not as exact as your mobile device. Google makes “proximate guesses”. Moz wrote an awesome article and tested this all out and we suggest you go over and read that for yourself. They even set up a great slideshare with their research.

By the way do not get angry if you have an SEO service going on and you see your business not appearing in the local packs because imma say it, “Google did it!” When google implemented this local pack update it literally bumped you off to some extent because now you might not show up if the person searching is not located within your radius. Now what? Work harder at your local organic optimization, look beyond the local pack unless you want to pay google lots of money for advertisement within the “more places” local pack page. Yes, Google is selling ads in this section now….makes you wonder hu?

Have you noticed this update at all? What do you think about this update that has slowly been happening over the last months? Leave your comments below, we would love to hear from you.




Moz | Proximity to searcher is new top local search ranking factor – http://bit.ly/2q4ezUz

Search Engine Land | Everything you need to know about googles possum algorithm update – http://selnd.com/2pa9EED

Article Author

Victoria Islas – Founder of Creative Two / Omni Online Marketer & Designer

She is inbound marketing certified, loves creating amazing projects for her clients and enjoys reading a great book on marketing or music. On other days, she is spending time with her kettlebells and playing guitar.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published.