A case study, conducted by columnist Joy Hawkins, was done to determine whether Google Posts have any impact on rankings. In short, the result of the case study was that Google Posts do have a positive impact on rankings in the Local 3-Pack.
The Local 3-Pack is a type of Google search result pulled for local searches, which draw upon Google’s distinct local algorithm. It’s the most common type of local search result, and can drive many visitors to your website and store. Here’s a screenshot:
Two businesses were used for the case study:
Case 1: A Vancouver Garage Flooring company that was struggling to rank within the 3-pack local results.
Case 2: A church whose website was without any SEO or marketing efforts going on.
For both websites two Google Posts were published each week, across seven weeks.
Case 1: Within the first week, the garage flooring business saw a slight increase in its local rankings for a location based keyword ‘garage flooring Vancouver‘, pushing them back up into the local 3-pack results. For the implicit ‘garage flooring‘ search, the business jumped from position 7 to position 2. See screenshot below:
Case 2: Prior to the Google Posts, the church website was ranking in position 5 within local results for a location based keyword. Unlike the garage flooring business, the church website saw a more gradual improvement across the seven weeks, moving up into position 4 after three weeks, then up into the 3-pack local results after another three weeks.
Why should you care?
Publishing Google posts is a low effort task and has a positive impact on local rankings. Ranking within the 3-pack local results can drive an enormous amount of visitors to your website and store.
Google posts have been underutilised by businesses, partially due to it previously being unable to schedule posts. You are now able to create and update posts via the new Google My Business API – see this post about new Google My Business features for more.
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