Brief Change Suggests Local SEO Ranking Factors are Different for Branded Queries

Do you know the dissimilarities between branded and non-branded local packs in Google Search Engine, and how might ranking factors be weighted in a different way for each? Columnist Joy Hawkins shares her observations.

I had a unique experience a few months back that proved that Google weights local ranking factors in a different way for branded search terms than they are doing for non-branded ones.

Before I clarify what occurred, I have to first explain that there are currently two different types of local 3-packs (branded versus non-branded), and my conclusion is that the ranking factors for these are not the same.

Branded vs. non-branded 3-pack
Typically the branded 3-pack is generally what you get when you search things like “sears dallas” or “starbucks seattle” or “state farm chicago.” (However, I frequently see Google Search engines displaying branded 3-packs for non-branded queries. I’ve always determined this means that Google Search engines somehow “thinks” the query is a branded search when it’s really not.)

You will get a non-branded 3-pack when you search common categories like “shopping mall chicago” or “auto insurance baltimore.”

Read the full article on Search Engine Land.

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