Local Searches now Brandish a Carousel

Google recently announced that the Knowledge Graph Carousel display is now extended (it was launched last year) to local searches as well. The feature has been available to iPad and Nexus tablet users since December, but not until the day before yesterday was it available to desktop users. As of now, the feature works ONLY IN THE US, but will soon extend to other countries and languages. 
Give it a go—type or say “mexican restaurants,” or try any similar search for restaurants, bars or hotels. Click on one of the places in the carousel to get more details on it, including its overall review-based score, address and photos. If you want to see more places, click the arrow at the right of the carousel. And you can zoom in on the map that appears below the carousel to restrict your search to only places in a specific area….” explains the Google+ post. 

Thus, images of search results will now be displayed horizontally against a black backdrop and above the usual SERPs. 

local search result



What is New? 

  • Zagat scores and reviews are prominently displayed.
  • Map based search results through knowledge graph has given way to image based results.
  • Images have gained prominence. The map is displayed only when you click on one of the search results.
  • Horizontal display means that now all search results will get equal preference. This is in contrast to the conventional vertical display where users have a natural instinct to prefer search results in order of display.
  • Details such as address and URL of the site are no longer displayed
  • Users do not get to directly click on the Google+ page of the business. 

Pretty much straight forward and self explanatory isn’t it? 

Yes, and that is why we’re going to delve if it’s going to be a hit or not…

What I think?

As Search Engine Land reported, this feature was commonly sighted (albeit only for a few popular categories including people search).  But the announcement introduces carousel display for almost all local searches. Search ranking factors (for local organic) is unlikely to change; they’re probably going to remain the same. As already mentioned, images will become more important; probably Google’s encouraging local businesses to post more images of their business and use more of their G+ profile.
Reviews have also become important; again prompting users to use G+. When users select one of the search results from the carousel, the Google Places listing is displayed on the top left… thus, claiming your Google Places listing is become all the more important.  Also, make sure that you update your G+ profile with images, business hours, phone number, contact information, etc. 

Here’s what Guna*  has to say…

"I consider this as a welcome move by google as more and more users turn to smartphone searches, the carousel display will boost user experience and ease of navigation. It is now become so important that the local business profile is complete 100% with as much photos as possible. Fresh stream of photos will help portray the business at the best.  I wait for automated platforms like yext to comment on this move."

In Conclusion…

  1. Claim your G+ profile and update all information especially images on it
  2. Pay attention to customer service thereby indirectly encouraging customers to write about you.
  3. Pay attention to listings on other social reviews sites like Yelp and Reddit as well
**Guna is our CEO and a pioneer in the field of digital marketing. 

Category :

SEO News

Tags :

local seo, local seo images

About Manickarasi Mathavan

Manickarasi Mathavan I’ve always aimed to seal my articles with a KISS- Keeping it Simple, yet Sagacious! My articles make a conscious effort to cut through the technical jargons and elucidate in a manner that is understood by .... more info