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Recently Google came out with a update for local search results that many are calling Pigeon. Here is a explanation from , “ The changes will be visible within the Google Maps search results and Google Web search results.”


I have been trying to get my clients to show up in the local search / Google Map suggestions, for some time now. At the same time that this Pigeon update was rolled out I noticed an immediate change in my clients local search results.  Again from

“The core changes are behind the scenes, but it does impact local search results rankings and some local businesses may notice an increase or decrease in web site referrals, leads and business from the change.

Google told us that the new local search algorithm ties deeper into their web search capabilities, including the hundreds of ranking signals they use in web search along with search features such as Knowledge Graph, spelling correction, synonyms and more.

In addition, Google said that this new algorithm improves their distance and location ranking parameters.”

I have tested the search from different ip address and also mobile devices and have noticed a few different search results based on Location. For instance when I searched from the office of one of my clients from there wifi on my iPhone my client was the first to return in the Local section. Then I did the same serch off my clients wifi and the search results change order. Then back at my office just 4 miles away I get a whole new list of results. Interesting to note that 2 of the above listed local search results are also listed on the first page. of the SERP.

The picture seen below are a list of local results searched from my office 4 miles away from my clients address. There is a  Photographer just .25 miles away from my office that does not show up on the list. To note that photographer does not show up in any local results post Pigeon but before Pigeon they would have a top ranking on the local search results.

Pigeon Update

What I have seen in the short amount of time testing this new update.

  • Local results are closely tied to your overall SERP ranking. top 15 ranked sites for this given search. i.e. Kimberly Jarman Photography ranked 8th, Allison Tyler Jones ranked 6th and Elaine Kessler Photography ranked 10th nissle photo seniors ranks 15th.

  • There seems to be a distance factor with this test. The results were not over 10 miles away from the address where I am doing the search.

  • Google+ reviews also play a role in local search results

  • Pagerank seems to also play a role here. Kimberly Jarman Photography PR 1, Allison Tyler Jones PR 1, nissle photo seniors PR 1, Elaine Kessler Photography PR 2 and Orcatek Photography PR1

  • While my clients site outranks these other sites for this search and is closer than 2 of the local sites returned, they have a higher Page rank.

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