If you are someone who uses Google quite often to search for local businesses, you have probably noticed the 7-pack of results that highlight specific companies and offer their contact information outright. In 2015, Google decided to do away with this and condense this into a 3-pack, which is sometimes referred to as the “snack pack“.
The first thing that you may notice when local results come up now is the fact that you are no longer given a sneak peek at the address and phone number of the businesses in this area of the page. Also, when you click on the name of the company, you will end up on a Google Maps page instead of the main website of the business in question.
Why This Occurred
Google has not been very clear about their reasons for making these changes, but it has been chalked up by many as one of the several theoretical happenings. Here are a few reasons that these changes may have occurred:
- Google is attempting to control all of the leads offered in their results. Since hitting any of the Google ads displayed benefits them financially, it makes perfect sense for them to offer you a lower number of other available options.
- The last thing Google wants is to allow Amazon to surpass them in any way. The fact that Amazon is working on cornering the local market with home services is not sitting well with Google. As a result, they are focusing on expanding enough to nudge Amazon a few steps back.
- Google plans on making it so those sponsored ads that people rarely click will no longer appear to be what they are. Yes, this may sound a bit confusing, but it is relatively straightforward. They want to make people believe they are hitting organic results when they are hitting links that will put cash in the search engine’s pocket which is just as sneaky as it sounds.
It may be one of these factors or some combination, but the reality is that this means changes for local business. This is a small glimpse into how local companies may be affected by these adjustments.
What Must Be Done
If you don’t want to get left in the dust, it is important that you make some changes. The main thing you will need to do is work much harder to achieve a higher rank in Google. Those who were sitting pretty in the 4-7 rank on the page will no longer have the prominence that they once did. It will be essential for all business to strive for one of the top three spots.
Those who are not sure of how to do this would probably benefit from hiring a SEO company like Coronation Internet Marketing to help. Otherwise, your business is likely to see some serious damage in the form of a huge dip in profits.
All the information provided here about the 3-pack may seem very frightening, but the reality is that being well prepared and willing to put in extra work means that your local business can still thrive. Regardless of why Google decided to make these alterations, it is your responsibility to prepare for challenges and weather the storm.