As I am typing this, Google is implementing it’s newest “schtick.” Google is putting MUCH MORE emphasis on Google Places, and it’s ability to guess at what you are trying to search, an extension of Google Instant. If Google thinks you are making a local search, it offers you local results via Google Maps mixed with organic results. This is happening LIVE right now. This MAJOR GOOGLE CHANGE has it’s good points and it’s bad. Then there’s the REALLY BAD. For whom, I just don’t know yet.
Good Points: For sites that aren’t doing well in the organic listings, they could possibly get some traffic through the Google Places change. Today.
Bad Points: If you were ranking, say, 5 or 6 in Google because of a properly optimized site, NOW you may lose some traffic because of the addition of the sites from Google Places. You may NO LONGER be on the front page. Looks like about 7 Google Places have been added to the “normal” listing. Do we even KNOW what normal is any more?
The REALLY Bad: Results look spammy right now. Maybe Google will get it fixed, but Google is currently putting PAID ADs in the results listings. Is good old fashioned organic search gone for good? With the mixed results I noticed that some of the Google Places (Maps) had page titles……WHAT?
This seems to be affecting local searches only. It’s always been a bit of a game, as I tell my friends, whether to put your geo-modifier at the head or tail of your search string. Who knows…………..this is going to be a wait and see kind of thing!
I was just searching houston guns. The Google map on the right hand side of the page and was staying static, thus covering up the paid ads as you were scrolling down the page. Bet there are some advertisers out there that are NOT happy with that.
I have confidence Google will get some of this worked out, and fast. Some of it………..well, we’ll just have to wait and see! Good luck!