Goodbye 7 Packs! Only 3 Packs with No Phone # or Address for All Local Results

Linda Buquet

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Seeing widespread results that the snack pack style local display, with only 3 listings and not showing address or phone, is rolling out to all local listings.

It's rolling out widely enough that it appears this could be the new normal and no longer just a test. I told Mike on his blog this AM that I was still seeing the 7 pack everywhere.

Just checked and CRAP - the new 3 pack is here across the board!!!

I need to leave right now, so just throwing out links to other discussions including Mike's from this AM.

7 Pack Becoming 3 Pack with Mobile Like Snak Pack Rollout?

<a href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/112397744214293849982">Brian Barwig at our Pro Community</a> just now.

<a href="https://plus.google.com/u/0/101188114251880193128">Ryan Schilling at our Pro Community yesterday.</a>

You guys share what you are seeing and thinking.
I'll weigh in when I get back tonight.
 

Scott Rawlins

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This is not good for anyone, not even the user IMO.

I too was seeing 7 packs this morning, but now it's the Snack Pack across the board for me. :mad:
 

Scott Rawlins

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Nice write up Casey. Didn't even noticed the omission of a phone number without click on the listing itself. I will be curious to know what percentage of users will click for more results rather than take only 3 options. As a consumer, I know I would want to see more.
 

Linda Buquet

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Thanks Casey! Can't wait to read when I get back.

On the 2 packs I checked this AM that were still 7 packs...

Los Angeles Personal Injury Attorney and Seattle Chiropractor...

Both packs seem to have the exact 3 on top in the same ranking order. So it appears based on that tiny sample that the algo did not change, just the display???

Is that what you guys are seeing too???

Mike totally called it this AM. Wish I would have grabbed 7 pack screenshots of the queries he showed so we could double check the ranking order.

Late, need to run...

TONS of comments coming in from the Pros on Brian's post at the Pro forum, linked above!
 

KSanders

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This is going to hurt a lot of local players. I also expect in many verticals--particularly home services--these will roll into ad units.

As thumbtack continues to crawl further up droves of local terms, visibility in local SERPs will be largely pay to play. Take another look at this lovely SERP, coming soon to a vertical near you.

Not happy with this rollout, at all.
 

CodyBaird

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Wow that is a great example of directories taking over a search result. Ugly. Who wants to see 4 links to yelp?

Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
 

Broland

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I don't really have the time now or anytime soon, but has anyone checked to see if these 3 pack results match up with the old blended? Or better yet do they match up with Google maps results? They seem to be much like the new maps and could be pulling in those results.

The 'more results' is using &tbm=lcl in the URL's which is very similar to the new Google maps search.

If someone has time and wants to check these:
hxxps://www.google.com/search?q=PUT+SEARCH+TERMS+HERE&tbm=lcl

What I'm saying is, there has always been a discrepancy in rankings between the Google Maps results and the blended local packs. This update may be Google fixing that discrepancy.

With Google places gone and the beginning a separation from G+, it looks like Google is definitely investing towards Maps and mobile, at least for now - Probably a smart move.
 
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Just a thought here... but my first impression was that the 3 pack forces the user to click through to more local results.

Couldn't you argue that this may be a positive? Now instead of fighting to get in the 7 pack, you need to be above the fold for the local results.

If a client is upset that they aren't in the top 3, I could argue that most searchers aren't going to only look at the 3 local results, but will click through.
 

KSanders

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Just a thought here... but my first impression was that the 3 pack forces the user to click through to more local results.
The 3 pack constrains the view and makes it easier to roll them into ad units :cool:
 

Linda Buquet

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Thanks for all the insights, opinions and comments everyone.

I'm a little late to the party. The new 3 pack just started to show for me this afternoon, right before I had to leave, so I didn't get a chance to research until now.

The main thing that struck me, which I've mentioned a couple times is no address or phone until/unless you click through.

But in clicking through, what struck me is NO more G+ L pages in the SERPs. No links at all. The reviews just show in the overlay and Google no longer feels the need to link to the actual page.

This seems totally contradictory to their goal of getting SMBs to claim/verify their local listing. The average SMB isn't doing to know that the data on their page is what shows up in various places. I think some will think, there's no page anymore so why bother to claim and maintain one. If they can't see a page, it's like why bother with it, right? Don't you think many that aren't working with people like us and don't know what's up will think that?
 

JoyHawkins

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I am not a fan of this new layout. So many great businesses that ranked D, E, F etc are now completely shut out. I'm expecting lots of calls today.

I also really don't get why Google removed reviews from branded queries. See the post I wrote up about it this morning:

4 Observations about Google?s New Snak Pak Local Search Display | Imprezzio Marketing

Are you guys seeing the photo display for any other industries other than restaurants, hotels, DJs, bed & breakfasts and banquet halls?
 

warrenpd

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I feel like this is just Google taking one step closer to implementing paid local search results across the board just like they are testing with the San Francisco Plumbers.
 

billbean

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The wild ride continues. Keep arms and legs inside until the ride comes to a complete stop...wait...this ride apparently never stops. Oh the insanity!
 

Brian Barwig

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I echo Joy's statements. Im not a fan of this, it doesnt seem to be a good user experience and it feels very Pigeonesque to me. Im seeing some spam creep in and suspect only more spam in the future as those 3 spots become more coveted.

I'll throw my post in the ring as well if you feel like reading more on it: Google goes to Local 3 Pack | Enterprise & Local SEO | IntegrateDigitalMarketing

Never a dull day in Digital. Thanks Google!
 
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