Google Testing 100% Pay-To-Play Nearby Local Business Ads At Top of SERPs

Linda Buquet

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Re: 100% Pay-To-Play Nearby Business Ads At Top of the Local SERPs - Testing, It's Co

Thanks Kyle, for sharing that discovery here!

It's kinda big news I think, because it takes us one more step closer in the march toward full pay-to-play across the board.

FYI all, Kyle didn't mention it in his post here, but if you click through and read the full post on his site, he mentions that Search Engine Land broke a story about this in May.

But with the ad units they showed and the announcement Google made back then, to trigger the mobile ads you had to use "nearby" in the query. Like "Dentist nearby" or "nearby auto repair."

So the difference Kyle is pointing to now is that now even if searchers don't add word nearby, just the straight query "Dentist" or "City Chiropractor" will trigger these new "Nearby Businesses" ads.

I've been saying all these changes were gearing up for pay-to-play local ads, but I actually didn't think it would happen this fast. I mean, granted at this point it's probably a test, BUT I thought they'd make more changes and gradually ease us into it, before even starting to test.

I'm going to wait to share this on social in the AM when everyone's online.

Thanks again for breaking the news here 1st Kyle!

What do you guys think?

Are you seeing these ads yet?

Any questions for Kyle about the ad tests he's seeing???
 

Linda Buquet

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Re: 100% Pay-To-Play Nearby Business Ads At Top of the Local SERPs - Testing, It's Co

I forgot to mention last night, I tried to replicate on my Android device and could not.
But then again, even with "nearby" added, I'm not seeing the "Nearby Businesses" ads.

ARE YOU SEEING THEM? If so, please let us know the exact query you used.
 

Linda Buquet

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FYI, I have a story about another test coming up here in a few minutes.

WHAT TEST??? NO REVIEWS - NO STARS in the 3 PACK!!!

Stay tuned to the Local Search Channel, that story with screenshots coming up next!
 

Linda Buquet

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Here's that other story I mentioned:

<a href="http://www.localsearchforum.com/google-local/35962-no-reviews-stars-new-local-3-pack-yet-another-google-test.html">NO Reviews or Stars In The New Local 3 Pack - Yet Another Google Test?</a>

FYI I just noticed in Kyle's screenshots above, the 2nd two have NO REVIEWs either!
 

DanLeibson

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So just to clarify, in every version of this I could replicate on my phone they weren't replacing the 3 pack with ads, there was a pack of ads above the "organic" 3-pack. So the first 6 results were local in some way.
 

Linda Buquet

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So just to clarify, in every version of this I could replicate on my phone they weren't replacing the 3 pack with ads, there was a pack of ads above the "organic" 3-pack. So the first 6 results were local in some way.
OK thanks Dan!

You must be a mind reader! Since I could not replicate, I was just wondering about that and was just getting ready to ask Kyle - then your post appeared. Mind reader! :p
 

KSanders

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I'm seeing a full stack of nearby business ads now for dentist and dentists, as well as chiropractors. Chiropractor is still only displaying one ad for me at the moment. Have updated on post and included here as well.
dentist-full-576x1024.png

chiropractors-full-ads-576x1024.png



 

Linda Buquet

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I'm seeing a full stack of nearby business ads now for dentist and dentists, as well as chiropractors.
Thanks for the update Kyle!

Do you mean a full stack of 3 ad listings PLUS a regular 3 pack below that?
OR do you mean only a 3 pack of ads then organic below???
 

KSanders

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Do you mean a full stack of 3 ad listings PLUS a regular 3 pack below that?
OR do you mean only a 3 pack of ads then organic below???
I'm just calling the 3 nearby ads a full ad stack since I doubt they'll go beyond 3. So it's 3 of the nearby business ads, then map, then 3 local listings, then organic. Main issue is how much the ads look like map listings ?\_(ツ)_/?
 

Linda Buquet

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"I doubt they'll go beyond 3"

Although FYI in the May announcement Google said:
"We’ll show three or four different businesses for location-related searches like “nearby auto repair.”
 

JoshuaMackens

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The ads are taking up all the clickable search results above the mobile fold. How frustrating.
 
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So for those that don't know, you can replicate the local results (even for mobile devices) by using the Google Adwords Ad Preview & Diagnosis Tool (http://www.google.com/AdPreview). I use this all the time to check local results outside of my geo.

Ad Preview and Diagnosis ? Google AdWords.png
It works for the queries that Kyle posted about yesterday. I am also seeing similar results (especially for dentist queries) in San Francisco, Atlanta & Portland. This looks like something that may be rolling out and is not just a test.

Using the Ad Preview & Diagnosis tool also works for checking mobile organic results in different regions. It can sometimes give more accurate results than changing your location in Search Tools allows for. It is hardly 100%, but I use it quite often when I'm looking to check client rankngs in other regions.

Robert

 

Linda Buquet

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Great tip Robert. I totally forgot about that.

I'll have to play with it on some test queries. Cool. Just did.

I've heard folks say with a tablet it still shows a 7 pack. This emulates a tablet and sure enough. Different type of pack yet again, a little more like the old style 7 pack.

Are congrats in order on the Bruce Clay gig. Is that a new development???

Thanks again for sharing!
 

Margaret Ornsby

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Jul 22, 2013
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That no stars in the 3pack is a worry - Casey Miraz's most recent post just demonstrated how effective those stars are.
If G drops the stars from the pack, wonder if businesses will continue to work as hard for reviews on G.
Is G getting tired of review spam and exiting the game?
 

Dave

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Nov 19, 2012
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On a smaller mobile screen all I see are ads. Size of screen might show something different...but basically on a mobile first view is dominated by ppc.

Then the crap pack. No addresses. links to the site. a call button.

Now with the option and opportunity to run review stars through adwords via an address extension--> Google could push lots of reviews on the mobile ads and move a large population of searchers to push for that:

http://www.localsearchforum.com/google-local-reviews/33609-gold-stars-without-using-adwords-express.html

As I was rotating between desktop and mobile on some of our smb's I was seeing reviews and stars on desktop ads...but I wasn't seeing them on mobile.

I'll have to do a good bit more searching...but are the reviews and stars showing on ads in mobile??? I haven't looked for them before.
 

helloworld

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It looks like Google watch this thread as the next day 7 pack was removed from ipad.

In other news, i am now seeing a 2 pack in some non geo search
 

Linda Buquet

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It looks like Google watch this thread as the next day 7 pack was removed from ipad.
Yes, Google does read this forum, but my guess was that tablets were just a little bit behind desktop and mobile.

What queries are you seeing 2 packs for?
 

regl8r

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Apr 2, 2014
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While this is no surprise, I noticed something that I haven't seen anyone else talk about. I was wondering how their "select 3" and receive a quote feature was going to work if someone just sees the phone number on page 1 of search results. Searched the phone number and business name, low and behold they are not connected. So looks like calls will be tracked and charged as well.
 

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