Local Search: More important than ever

Local search is essential to online marketing and has become even more crucial recently. Historically, businesses relied on traditional promotion, such as print ads and word-of-mouth recommendations. However, with the advancement of technology and the widespread usage of smartphones, people are increasingly searching locally for products and services “near” them.

We will discuss the relevance of local search for businesses and how it has developed. We will also examine tactics companies can employ to attract more customers and boost their local visibility.

What is Local Search?

Local search is finding and displaying relevant business information to users based on location. This search could include a physical address, contact information, reviews, and even directions to the business. 

Local Search Optimization

The rise of mobile search has dramatically increased the use of local search. According to research, 46% of all Google searches are for local information, making it an essential channel for businesses looking to reach out to potential clients in their area.

Voice search and AI assistants like 4omni, Siri, and Alexa have helped and continue to boost the popularity of local search. Users can now ask their devices to find nearby businesses, making discovering new products and services more accessible.

The Importance of Local Search

Local search is crucial for businesses because it tailors Google’s search results to the user’s geographic location, significantly enhancing relevance. This prioritization of local information helps users find nearby products and services efficiently, which is vital since most people only view the first page of search results.

For businesses, especially those with physical locations that depend on foot traffic, ranking well in local searches can dramatically increase visibility and customer visits.

Tools like Google’s search parameters or regional settings adjustment can help businesses monitor their local search rankings without physically visiting different locations. This allows for optimization of the online presence and increased local customers.

local search optimization

How to improve your local search presence

Improving your local search presence is essential for attracting more customers from your immediate area. Here are several effective strategies based on the information provided:

      1. Optimize Your Google Business Profile (GBP)
        • Claim and regularly update your GBP: Start by claiming your Google Business Profile, as it’s a cornerstone for local SEO. Periodically update your Profile with accurate information such as your address, business hours, and photos. Updates in GBP help ensure that Google and potential customers have the latest details about your business.

        • Respond to reviews: Monitor and respond to GBP-related reviews. Engaging in reviews can boost your company’s visibility and demonstrate that you value consumer feedback.
        • Utilize posts and offers: Use the post feature on GBP to update customers about promotions, events, or new products. Regular updates keep your Profile active and engaging, encouraging more interactions.
      2. Enhance Local SEO Through Website Optimization
        • Local keywords: It is acceptable to include local keywords in the content. Include the city, neighborhood, and relevant local information in your metadata, headers, and site’s content.
        • Optimize for mobile: A mobile-friendly website is necessary. Most local searches are on mobile devices, and a mobile-first design enhances the user experience, which might influence your search rankings.
        • Local landing pages: If you have several locations, create a dedicated landing page for each. Include specific details such as the address, local phone number, and a map. This can help rank each location more effectively in local searches.
      3. Use Google’s Search Parameter Feature
        • Monitor different locations: Add “&near=cityname” to your Google search queries to simulate search results in other locations. This syntax is a powerful way to see how your business ranks in various areas without physically being there, allowing you to identify areas for improvement.
      4. Adjust Google Settings and Maps
        • Change regional settings: You can alter your Google search settings to view results from different regions. Making that change can provide insights into how your business appears in searches outside your immediate location.
        • Set work and home locations on Google Maps: Clarify your business’s location on Google Maps. Accurately setting your ‘home’ and ‘work’ locations can help Google provide more tailored local search results to those nearby.
      5. Engage With Local Content and Links
        • Create local content: The content could be blog posts about local events, news, or activities that include local keywords.
        • Local backlinks: Build links from local sources such as chambers of commerce, local business directories, and other businesses in your community. These links can enhance your local search credibility and visibility.
      6. Leverage Advanced Tools
        • Google Ads Preview and Diagnostics tool: Use this tool to view how your ads appear in different locations. These tools can help you adjust your paid advertising strategies to target local customers better.
        • Valentin.app“: This tool simulates searches from different geographic locations for specific keywords, giving you a clearer picture of your local search ranking.

        • VPN and location tools: Use VPNs or spoofing tools to simulate being in different locations. VPNs can help check local search results and understand how well your local SEO efforts are performing across various regions.

local search - local map

Can you afford to ignore local search?

Ignoring local search can be costly for any business, especially those relying on foot traffic. Local search optimization ensures that when potential customers look for items or services in their area, businesses appear in search results.

Since most people only view the first page of search results, being prominently listed can dramatically increase your visibility and attract more local customers.

Additionally, Google’s emphasis on local relevance means that proper local SEO is necessary for your business to appear in relevant searches, missing out on significant opportunities. Therefore, investing in local search strategies is essential for staying competitive and visible in your community.

Does size matter in local search?

In local search, the size of your business does not inherently determine your visibility or ranking on Google. What matters more are your local SEO practices.

Google aims to provide relevant results to usersfocusing on the quality of information, such as the accuracy of your Google Business Profile, responsiveness to reviews, and relevance of your local content.

Small businesses can compete effectively with larger ones by optimizing these elements and engaging with their local community online. Thus, regardless of size, any company that prioritizes and effectively manages its local search presence can achieve significant visibility and attract more local customers.

What factors does Google consider for local search relevance?

Google considers several key factors to determine local search relevance, ensuring users receive the most relevant and valuable results based on location. These factors include:

      • Proximity is how close the business is to the searcher’s location. Google uses the searcher’s device location data (via Wi-Fi, GPS, or cell triangulation), labeled places on Google Maps, and IP address to determine proximity and prioritize businesses nearest to the user.
      • Relevance: This involves how well a local business profile matches what someone is searching for. Google assesses this by evaluating the information in your Google Business Profile, including business descriptions, categories, and keywords. Ensuring your Profile is detailed and accurately reflects your business can improve your relevance in search results.
      • Prominence: Google considers a business’s well-knownness. This can be influenced by information across the web, such as links, articles, and directories. Reviews are also crucial; more positive ratings and reviews can improve a business’s visibility. Additionally, Google considers your position in web results, which reflects your SEO efforts.
      • Engagement: Regular updates to your Google Business Profile and interactions like posts, offers, and responses to reviews indicate to Google that your business is active and engaging with customers, which can influence your ranking.

By focusing on these factors—proximity, relevance, prominence, and engagement—businesses can optimize their local search presence to meet the needs of local searchers better, thereby increasing their visibility and potential customer engagement.

Tips for Sustaining Your Local Search Presence

Maximizing your local search visibility requires ongoing efforts to maintain and improve your online presence. Here are a few tips for sustaining your local search presence:

      • Regularly update your Google Business Profile: Keep your Profile current, including business hours, contact information, business description, categories, products/services offered, and high-quality images. Post updates and offers and respond to reviews to show your business is active.
      • Consistently engage with local content: Regularly create and share content relevant to your local community. You can share community content through blog posts, social media posts, or collaboration with businesses in your area. This content can boost engagement from potential customers in your vicinity.
      • Monitor and reply to reviews: Reviews are an important factor in local search ranking, so keeping track of them is key. Responding swiftly and professionally to good and negative reviews can show potential clients you respect their feedback and support.
      • Monitor your local search performance: Keep track of your rankings, traffic, and conversions from local search. This data can help you identify areas for improvement and adjust your strategies accordingly.

By consistently implementing these tips, businesses can maintain a strong local search presence and continue to attract more local customers over time.

Does local search optimization replace traditional marketing?

No, local search optimization should not replace traditional marketing methods. Instead, it should complement them. While optimizing your online presence is crucial for visibility and attracting customers, traditional marketing efforts like print ads, flyers, and events can still be valuable in promoting your business locally.

Using a combination of digital and conventional marketing methods can help you reach a larger audience and boost the likelihood of converting potential consumers.

Additionally, integrating local SEO strategies into traditional marketing efforts, such as including your website and social media handles on print materials, can boost visibility and bring more traffic to your site.

Therefore, businesses should consider incorporating local search optimization and traditional marketing strategies for the best results. Local search optimization is an inexpensive and successful strategy to contact potential clients in your area. Maximizing your internet presence can boost your visibility without spending a lot of money on traditional marketing.

Mistakes to avoid in local search optimization

While optimizing your local search presence is crucial, there are some common mistakes that businesses should avoid:

      • Inaccurate or incomplete information: Providing incorrect or incomplete information on your Google Business Profile can negatively impact your visibility and credibility. Make sure all details are accurate and up to date.
      • Not engaging with reviews: Ignoring reviews, especially negative ones, can harm your online reputation and turn potential customers away. Responding professionally and swiftly to all reviews proves that you value customer feedback and are committed to providing excellent service.
      • Ignoring local content: Creating and sharing relevant local content can help boost your visibility among potential customers in your area. Failure to do so can limit your reach and engagement.
      • Neglecting to monitor performance: Tracking your local search ranking, traffic, and conversions can allow you to identify areas for improvement and change your methods accordingly. Failure to do so can result in lost possibilities for optimization.

Businesses that avoid these frequent blunders can maximize their local search presence and consistently improve.


Why is local search becoming increasingly important for local businesses?

Local search has become crucial for finding local businesses as more consumers turn to search to find local services and products. With the advancement in local search engine optimization (SEO) practices, companies that optimize their online presence for local searches can significantly improve their visibility to potential buyers. Local SERP visibility means appearing in search results when customers in your area are looking for products or services you offer, which is vital for driving foot traffic and online inquiries.

How do online reviews impact a local business’s visibility on search engine results pages?

Online reviews are important in local SEO and the visibility of businesses in search engine results pages (SERPs). Positive reviews can enhance a business’s credibility and attractiveness, encouraging more clicks and visits. Additionally, search engines like Google consider the quantity and quality of online reviews as factors when ranking businesses in local search results. Therefore, actively managing and acquiring positive online reviews should be vital to any local SEO strategy.

What is Google My Business, and why is it essential for local SEO strategy?

Google My Business is a free tool for business owners to manage their presence on Google Search and Maps. By creating and optimizing a Google business listing profile, companies can provide essential information such as location, hours, contact details, and services offered. This information helps search engines accurately match businesses with local search queries, making it an indispensable part of any local SEO strategy to increase visibility and attract local customers.


Local search optimization can significantly benefit businesses by increasing their visibility and attracting more local customers. By focusing on factors like proximity, relevance, prominence, and engagement, companies can improve their local search ranking and better meet the needs of potential customers in their area.

Effective strategies for sustaining a strong local search presence can include:

      • Consistently updating your Google Business Profile.
      • Engaging with local content.
      • Monitoring reviews and performance.
      • Utilizing a mix of digital and traditional marketing methods.

Avoid common mistakes like providing inaccurate information, neglecting reviews, and not monitoring performance. By following these tips, businesses can maintain a strong local search presence and continue to attract more customers over time.

How to Build Topical Authority for better Search Engine Optimization(SEO)

Content or topical authority is a critical aspect of SEO that significantly impacts your website’s ranking and visibility on search. It is the most essential aspect of your content strategy. It refers to your content’s perceived expertise, trustworthiness, and reliability within a niche or industry.

Topical authority is a website’s expertise, credibility, and trustworthiness on a specific subject. As you build topical authority, you build trust. You establish topical authority by consistently creating high-quality, informative, and relevant content with topical relevance around a subject close to your business. You will become the resource of choice for people, traditional search and AI alike.

Establishing content authority involves creating in-depth content on relevant topics that effectively address your audience’s needs and queries. Once you build topical authority, You can increase your site’s exposure on the search engine results page (SERP) to attract visitors and potential clients.

Topical authority is distinct from domain authority, which evaluates a website’s general trustworthiness and impact across all topics. Both domain authority and content authority play a role in SEO.

Why Does Topical Authority Matter to SEO for SERPs?

Strong topical authority significantly improves search performance because search engines like Google trust topical relevance and authoritative sources and rank them higher in their organic search results and the unpaid, natural results that appear on SERPs.

Fostering Trust

Topical authority builds confidence in your brand on every level. This trust leads to more returning site visitors and higher SERPs. For example, Joann Fabric, Michaels, and Webs have established a great deal of topical authority in the yarn and knitting e-commerce sector. As a result, Google trusts their information and ranks them prominently for e-commerce-related searches, allowing them to capture the most significant shares of traffic for those terms. Establishing topical relevance is crucial for improving a website’s position on the Google SERP, as it directly influences visibility in search results.

Supporting Natural Link Building for SEO

Topical authority also supports natural link building. Websites are likelier to share content from authoritative sources, driving more traffic and potentially increasing conversions. For instance, many of our LinkedIn articles on building authority might link to content from Semrush or Hubspot because:

      • Semrush and Hubspot provide information that is trusted and reliable.
      • The content supports our article’s narrative and benefits readers.

Semrush and Hubspot have established topical authority in the subject matter. Links from and to reputable sources like Semrush or Google act as votes of confidence to search engines, enhancing the trust and authority of our content. Consequently, pages with numerous backlinks from trusted sources often rank higher in the SERPs.

Reducing Marketing Spend

Building topical authority can be gradual, but its long-term effects make marketing more time and cost-effective. For example, a smaller business with niche topical authority can outrank larger competitors, reducing the need for extensive paid marketing efforts while achieving high visibility and traffic. This organic approach contrasts with paid search, where businesses bid in auctions to have their ads appear on SERP, often requiring continuous investment to maintain visibility.

Take Knit Picks, which ranks ahead of Amazon for “knitting needles”:

Notice the top page has 104 inbound backlinks compared to Amazon’s 51. This is because more sites recognize Knit Picks’ topical authority.

How Does Topical Authority Work?

When organizing results, Google aims to provide the best search experience by prioritizing the most relevant, helpful, and trustworthy pages. Major search engines recognize topical authority as a significant factor when organizing search results, highlighting the importance of content relevance and quality.

You build topical authority by consistently creating original, factual, and insightful content. This content:

      • cleanly incorporates relevant keywords
      • It is written simply and is easy to read
      • and solves problems or meets other needs of searchers

These aspects of topical authority are controllable, and we will focus on them. Backlinks and brand mentions will naturally follow.

Google’s Public Votes for Topical Authority

Many of Google’s algorithm updates have reaffirmed its preference for trustworthy, knowledgeable, and experienced publishers. Google simply favors content with topical authority.

Here’s a condensed timeline of updates pushing topical authority:

            • 2011’s Panda algorithm update: “Reduce rankings for low-quality sites—sites that are low-value adds for users, content rehashed from other websites, or are just not very useful.”
            • We first saw semantic search in Hummingbird (2013’s algorithm rewrite). Google focused more on search queries’ meanings than just links and keywords.
            • In the useful content update from December 2022, Google updated its E-A-T (Expertise, Authoritativeness, Trustworthiness) criteria to E-E-A-T, adding an extra “E” for “Experience.” The goal was to reward content writers with firsthand knowledge of their topics.

Topical authority is significant for news. Google’s topical authority method prioritizes results from “news teams intimately familiar with the location and topic.”

Topical authority enhances SEO efforts and complements search engine marketing strategies by ensuring content is seen as valuable and authoritative, improving visibility and prominence in organic and paid search results.

How to Build Topical Authority

Here are four simple tips for building topical authority for your brand and website. Being a topical authority is crucial for enhancing your site’s performance in organic search, as it signals that your content is a reliable source of information on specific topics.

Choose Your Niche (and Create Topic Clusters)

Aim to become the most authoritative online source of information on one or two specific themes. It saves time and money compared to focusing on a large, competitive field.

Instead of establishing authority on the broad topic of knitting, you could strive to become a trusted voice on beginner knitting patterns. Focusing on niche topics would make developing genuinely unique, high-quality content easier.

Use AI to improve your chances

Learning more about a given subject is the quickest technique to create groupings of closely related phrases on that topic, also known as keyword clustering. You can read our article about keyphrase research. Meanwhile, let’s discuss how to speed up your process using ChatGPT. If you have followed this instruction set, you should follow the instructions in keyword research to move forward.

ChatGPT is a powerful assistant for keyword research. It saves time and swiftly enhances your understanding of a topic, providing you with a much better means of keyword selection. You can use effective ChatGPT prompts for keyword research, but it should not be a substitute for traditional keyword research tools.  ChatGPT can be a time-saving marvel if prompted correctly, but if not, it can lead to errors and even generate new, impractical keywords.

Best ChatGPT Keyword Research Prompts

      • Generating Keyword Ideas Based On A Topic
          • Ask for popular sub-topics related to your main topic
          • Query sub-topics and request lists of popular keywords and long-tail keywords.
      • Using the Onion Method of Prompting:
          • Combine multiple prompts into one comprehensive query to streamline the process.
      • Generating Keyword Ideas Based On A Question:
          • Ask for questions related to your main topic and generate further questions to avoid duplicates.
      • Using the Alphabet Soup Method:
            • Generate keyword ideas by requesting keywords starting with each letter of the alphabet.
      • Based On User Personas:
            • Generate keywords for different user personas and their specific questions.
      • Based On Searcher Intent and User Personas:
            • Understand the search intent behind keywords and generate keywords for different search intents.

ChatGPT for Keyword Research Admin Tasks

        • Keyword Categorization:
          Filter keywords into categories, target personas, searcher intent, and search volume.
        • Keyword Clustering:
          Group related keywords based on their semantic relationships.
        • Keyword Expansion By Patterns:
          Use question, comparison, brand, and search intent patterns to expand keyword lists.

ChatGPT vs. Traditional Keyword Research Tools

While ChatGPT is helpful, validating its results with the SEO metrics provided by traditional keyword research tools is crucial. This validation process ensures the accuracy of your keyword research, providing you with confidence in your data. One of the better tools you can use is the SEMRush Keyword research tool.

ChatGPT For International SEO Keyword Research

ChatGPT can assist in translating keywords into different languages. However, verifying these translations with a keyword research tool is crucial, as direct translations may only sometimes have search volume.

Plan Your Link Building Strategies

Although you cannot completely control who links to your material or mentions your business, you may use basic tactics to obtain high-quality backlinks.

Below are a few easy link-building techniques to start with. Submitting content to be indexed is a crucial part of link-building strategies, enhancing your site’s visibility and contributing to higher organic rankings.


Outreach entails contacting appropriate websites and requesting links to your website. It is the most straightforward, direct tactic and should be at the top of your content strategy checklist.

Explain what distinguishes your proposed content to make your proposal more compelling. For example, it could be the sole study in your field.

And be specific. People should understand the advantages of linking to you. For example, linking to your study report may improve another site’s ideas, making its material more credible.

Broken Link Building

Broken link building occurs when you discover broken external links on other websites and provide working links from your own as alternatives.

Dead links degrade the user experience; thus, many website owners will gladly replace them. Please make the most of your outreach time by only offering to link when it’s an ideal match.

For example, if you have a new guide on the “best SaaS software for 2024,” hunt for broken links to comparable software lists by searching Google for “choosing SaaS software.” You may come across websites that reference obsolete versions.

Unlinked Brand Mentions

An unlinked brand mention occurs when a website mentions your brand name without providing a link to your website.

Often, it’s simply because the writer still needs to consider adding one.

You may be able to persuade them to change their link by contacting them and explaining the benefits of linking to your site.

Use an app like Semrush’s Media Monitor to get notified when another website mentions your company.

Create Problem-Solving Content

Create a steady stream of authoritative material directly addressing your audience’s needs and interests.

Unique, original understanding is always preferable. The most effective approach to stand out is offering value that your competition cannot match.

Other sorts of authoritative content you might use in your content strategy include:

        • contrary perspectives on your industry’s hot topics
        • Interviewing the experts
        • FAQs that others have not answered
        • Firsthand research

Research their questions using search engines and social media to guarantee that your content resonates with potential clients. 

AlsoAsked is also an excellent tool for getting quick ideas. AlsoAsked offers three free searches per day; use them judiciously or sign up for a premium subscription to receive additional monthly credits.

Enter a question or a key phrase, choose your region, and click “Search.”

You’ll see a tree diagram with questions that Google users who searched for your topic also asked:

Click on any of these to see further follow-up questions, then use the most relevant ones to generate helpful content.

Frequently Asked Questions

      • What is an example of topical authority?
        An example of topical authority is how Joann Fabric, Michaels, and Webs have established themselves as authoritative sources in the yarn and knitting e-commerce sector. Their consistently producing high-quality, informative content on knitting and related topics has earned them a strong reputation. Consequently, Google trusts their information and ranks them prominently for ecommerce-related searches.
      • What are the benefits of topical authority?
        The benefits of topical authority include:

          1. Improved Search Performance: Search engines like Google trust authoritative sources, leading to higher rankings in SERPs.
          2. Enhanced Trust: Both readers and search engines gain confidence in your brand, resulting in more returning visitors and higher SERP rankings.
          3. Natural Link Building: Authoritative material is more likely to be shared and linked to by other websites, which boosts traffic and conversions.
          4. Reduced Marketing Costs: Building topical authority can reduce the need for extensive paid marketing efforts, as high-quality content naturally attracts traffic and visibility over time.
      • Do backlinks produce topical authority?
        Yes, backlinks contribute to building topical authority. When other credible websites link to your material, search engines recognize your site as trustworthy and reliable on a given topic. These backlinks act as votes of confidence, enhancing your site’s credibility and authority. For example, Knit Picks’ ranking for “knitting needles” ahead of Amazon is partly due to having more backlinks from recognized sources, indicating more substantial topical authority.
      • Is topical authority necessary?
        Yes, topical authority is crucial for SEO. It significantly impacts your website’s ranking and visibility on search engines. Establishing topical authority builds trust with search engines and users, leading to higher rankings in SERPs, increased organic traffic, and more potential customers. Major search engines prioritize content from authoritative sources, making topical authority a key factor in SEO success.


To build your topical authority, follow the steps below religiously and you will succeed.

      • Choose Your Niche:
          • Identify specific, manageable topics within your industry to focus on.
          • Create clusters of related content to establish authority in those areas.
      • Use AI for Keyword Research:
          • Utilize ChatGPT and other tools to generate and organize keyword ideas.
          • Implement effective ChatGPT prompts for streamlined keyword research.
      • Develop User Personas:
          • Generate keywords and questions based on user personas to target your audience better.
      • Analyze Searcher Intent:
          • Understand the search intent behind keywords and create content that addresses these intents.
      • Create High-Quality Content:
          • Create original and informative content that addresses your audience’s needs. Provide Value!
          • Incorporate relevant keywords naturally and avoid excessive jargon.
      • Engage in Natural Link Building:
        • Develop relevant content to be shared and linked to by other reputable sites.
        • Reach out to other websites for backlink opportunities through outreach and broken link building.
      • Leverage Unlinked Brand Mentions:
          • Monitor mentions of your brand and request backlinks where they are missing.
      • Plan Problem-Solving Content:
          • Consistently create content that solves problems and answers questions your audience is searching for.
          • Use tools like AlsoAsked to identify relevant questions and topics.
      • Regularly Review and Update Content:
          • Review your content regularly.
          • Update older content with new information and insights to maintain authority.
      • Validate with Traditional Tools:
          • For accuracy and reliability, Cross-check keyword research and content performance using traditional SEO tools like SEMRush.
      • Optimize for International SEO:
          • Translate keywords into different languages using tools and verify their search volume and relevance.
          • Adapt content to suit the linguistic and cultural context of different regions.

These steps will help you build and maintain topical authority, improving your site’s SEO performance and visibility.


Google Maps gets AI boost

The future Google Maps

A couple of weeks before all hell broke loose with the Spam Update, Google Maps got an AI boost. Google introduced an AI-powered discovery feature utilizing large language models to analyze over 250 million places in its database, including photos, ratings, reviews, and more with Google Maps. 

This new feature allows users to enter conversational search queries and receive recommendations for nearby businesses, events, restaurants, and activities. The results are categorized with photos and review highlights, making it easier for users to understand why they meet their criteria.

We will delve deeper into how the Large Language model AI discovery feature works, its implications for local search and customer discovery, and how businesses can optimize their online presence using this technology.

How Does the AI-Powered Discovery Feature Work?

The large language model powered discovery feature on Google Maps combines large language models with the platform’s extensive database of over 250 million places. These language models are trained to understand conversational searches and provide recommendations based on location, ratings, reviews, etc.

When users enter a conversational search query, the AI technology analyzes their past search history, location data, and preferences to deliver tailored results. This means that the more users interact with Maps, the more personalized and accurate their recommendations will be.

In addition to providing recommendations, the large language model powered discovery feature allows users to refine their searches by asking follow-up questions. For example, users can request “activities for a rainy day” and receive indoor options tailored to their current location and weather. This makes it easier for users to manage spontaneous or changing itineraries.

How Google Maps’ New AI Feature Benefits Businesses

Here are some new features on Maps that benefit businesses:

AI-Powered Discovery

The first benefit businesses can reap from Maps’ new large language model powered feature is the ability to analyze Google Maps’ database of over 250 million places, photos, ratings, reviews, and more. By utilizing large language models, the feature can provide personalized business recommendations to users based on their location, search preferences, and history. This means that businesses are more likely to be discovered by potential customers looking for their products or services.

With this new feature, businesses can also benefit from the ability to refine their searches by asking follow-up questions, making it easier for users to find and visit them spontaneously. This can lead to increased traffic and sales for businesses.

Early Access Experiment With Local Guides

Google is conducting an early access experiment for its new AI-powered discovery feature with a select group of Local Guides. This means businesses participating in this experiment may have their information and offerings showcased to these high-level reviewers and influencers on Maps.

Being featured in the recommendations of these guides can increase businesses’ visibility and credibility, potentially leading to increased trust from potential customers. Additionally, the feedback gathered from these guides will help shape the feature before its rollout, ensuring it effectively benefits businesses and users.

Local search changes with AI Maps

Implications For Local Search

The new AI-powered discovery feature on Maps has significant implications for local search. Businesses may see increased qualified traffic and potential customers by providing high recommendations. This feature could also increase visibility to niche businesses or lesser-known attractions and events.

Businesses need to optimize their online information in new ways to rank for conversational searches and take advantage of the technology. This can include regularly updating their Google My Business profile with accurate details and photos and actively seeking and responding to reviews.

Personalized Recommendations

One of the main benefits a business can derive from Google Maps’ new artificial intelligence powered feature is the ability to provide recommendations. By analyzing a user’s location, search history, and preferences, the feature can suggest businesses that are most relevant and appealing to them.

This means businesses have a higher chance of being discovered by potential customers specifically looking for their type of products or services. It also allows the opportunity to cater to specific preferences, such as a “vintage vibe” or “kid-friendly” options.

These recommendations can drive more qualified traffic to businesses, enhance the overall customer experience, and potentially lead to repeat business.

So, with these new features on Maps, businesses can benefit from increased visibility, qualified traffic, and enhanced customer experience, making it a valuable tool for their marketing and growth strategies.

How businesses can optimize their online presence for the AI-powered discovery feature

With the new artificial intelligence powered discovery feature on Google Maps, businesses can reach a highly targeted audience and increase their online visibility. Here are some tips for optimizing your business’s online presence to take advantage of this technology:

Claiming and Updating Your Google My Business Profile

The first step in optimizing for the AI features is to claim and update your Google My Business profile. This is where Google pulls information about your business, such as location, contact details, and hours of operation. Ensure all the information is accurate and up-to-date to provide users with a seamless experience when they find your business on Google Maps.

Regularly Adding Posts and Photos

Google My Business also allows businesses to add posts and photos showcasing their products, services, and events. Regularly adding fresh content can improve your chances of being featured in recommendations on Google Maps. Additionally, having visually appealing photos can entice potential customers to visit your business.

Actively Seeking and Responding to Reviews

Reviews are essential for the large language model-powered discovery feature, which considers a user’s search history and preferences. Encourage customers to leave positive reviews on your GMB profile and actively respond to negative reviews, thus showing that you care about customer satisfaction.

Optimizing for Conversational Searches

This new feature allows users to ask for specific recommendations using natural language, such as “best brunch place near me” or “activities for a rainy day.” This means businesses need to optimize their online information for conversational searches. Use keywords and phrases that align with your offerings and location to increase your chances of appearing in recommendations.

Providing a Unique Experience

Lastly, remember that the large language model powered discovery feature aims to give users a unique and personalized experience. This means businesses should strive to offer something unique or special that differentiates them from competitors. This could be through unique products or services, special events, or a memorable customer experience.

By implementing these strategies and optimizing your online presence for the large language model powered discovery feature, businesses can reap the benefits of increased visibility, qualified traffic, and potential sales from this new Maps feature.

Should businesses participate in this early access experiment?

There is yet to be a definitive answer to whether businesses should participate in early access to Google Maps’ new large language model-powered discovery feature. It ultimately depends on each company’s individual goals and needs.

On the one hand, participating in the experiment can bring more visibility and potential sales through recommendations from high-level reviewers and influencers. It also provides valuable insights and feedback businesses can use to improve their offerings before the feature’s wider rollout.

On the other hand, participating in the experiment may require additional resources and effort to optimize for this specific feature, which could be a challenge for smaller businesses with limited budgets. No guarantee participating will result in increased visibility or sales.

Ultimately, businesses should carefully weigh the potential benefits and drawbacks before participating in the early access. It may benefit some companies, while others may prefer to wait and see how the feature performs after its official release.

Tips for businesses to make the most out of this feature

Here are some additional tips for businesses to make the most out of Google Maps’ new large language model powered discovery feature:

      • Keep track of your online presence and monitor how your business is featured in personalized recommendations.
      • Continuously update and optimize your Google My Business profile with accurate information, photos, and fresh content.
      • Pay attention to customer reviews and respond politely and immediately to any negative feedback.
      • Think of unique and creative ways to stand out from competitors and provide a memorable experience for customers on local guides.
      • Use conversational keywords and phrases in your online information to improve your chances of appearing in recommendations.

By following these tips, businesses can make the most of this new feature and see increased visibility, traffic, and sales. It’s also important to regularly re-evaluate and adapt your strategies as the feature evolves and becomes more widely available.

Should businesses also explore other AI-powered discovery platforms?

While Google Maps may be the most well-known and widely used platform for large language model-powered discovery, businesses should expand beyond just one platform. Other large language model-powered discovery platforms, such as Yelp, Foursquare, and TripAdvisor, have unique user bases and can potentially reach a different audience.

Businesses must research and determine which platforms align with their target audience and offerings. They should also keep an eye on emerging and new platforms to stay ahead of the competition.

Participating in multiple large language model-powered discovery platforms can increase a business’s online presence and chances of being discovered by potential customers. However, companies should also consider the time and resources needed to manage multiple platforms effectively. Smaller businesses could focus on one or two platforms and optimize their presence for conversational search queries within these platforms.


How is Google Maps using AI technology to empower local businesses in San Francisco? 

Google Maps is leveraging AI to analyze Google Maps data and provide personalized local business recommendations to users in San Francisco. This innovative feature aims to boost the visibility of local businesses and enhance the user’s experience through customized suggestions.

What are Google’s aims in introducing AI in Google Maps for local business discovery?

Google aims to revolutionize the way users discover and explore local businesses. By providing local discovery and recommendations based on AI analysis of Google Maps data, Google hopes to connect users with companies that meet their specific needs, ultimately supporting local establishments.

How can users explore local businesses using the new AI technology in Google Maps?

Users can explore local businesses on Google Maps through personalized recommendations provided by generative AI. The AI can analyze map data and user preferences to suggest personalized recommendations that align with the user’s tastes and requirements.

Can the AI in Google Maps save personalized local business recommendations for future reference?

Yes, generative AI in Google Maps is designed to learn from user interactions, preferences, and others in the maps community over time. As a user explores and interacts with local businesses, the AI adapts and refines its recommendations, which can be saved for future reference and enhance local discovery.


The new large language model-powered discovery feature on Google Maps presents a valuable opportunity for businesses to improve online visibility and reach consumers through personalized recommendations. Companies can make the most of this exciting new feature by actively participating in early access and implementing effective strategies.

However, it’s also vital for businesses to consider potential benefits and drawbacks before deciding to participate and regularly re-evaluate their strategies as the feature evolves.

Additionally, businesses should consider exploring other large language model powered discovery platforms to expand their online presence further and reach a larger audience. Given these facts, businesses can take advantage of the new AI feature and potentially see an increase in qualified traffic and sales. So, don’t wait; optimize your online presence for large language model powered discovery now!

SEO update: New Google Spam Policy has rolled out

Late in February, we told you about Google’s promise to dole out punishment to spammy sites. During, March 2024, Google’s updates to its spam policies has certainly done that. The update has affected all the websites that manipulate search rankings through automated or AI-generated content. This change was a response to recent incidents where large publishers have been caught using AI-generated articles on their websites without proper oversight. The updated policy, which will continue through May 2024, explicitly targets “scaled content abuse,” a term used to describe the creation of large amounts of low-quality, unoriginal content designed solely for ranking manipulation.

This update also expanded the definition of scaled content abuse beyond text-based content, potentially impacting other formats like images and videos. These changes aim to improve the quality of search results and penalize those who engage in manipulative tactics.

As we have been watching the havoc caused by this core update This article, there is definitely a lot more information  to delve into, and the details of the updates and what they mean for website owners and SEO professionals. We will also discuss a real-life example of scaled content abuse and its consequences. This information can help businesses stay ahead of Google’s guidelines and continue to provide valuable content for their users.

Why this update is significant

The updated spam policy spotlights the issue of scaled content abuse, which has been a growing concern for Google and its users. It also shows that Google is proactively addressing manipulative SEO tactics and ensuring that only high-quality, relevant content ranks well in search results.

This update also highlights the importance of regularly auditing website content and ensuring it adds value to users. Website owners and SEO professionals must be aware of the potential consequences of using automated or AI-generated content in large quantities, as it can now result in penalties from Google.

Furthermore, this update reinforces the importance of creating original, high-quality content to rank well in search results. The focus on providing value for users aligns with Google’s overall mission of improving the search experience for its users.

google's March 2024 policy stops spam content

What’s Changed In The Spam Policies?

Google’s recent spam policy updates mark a significant evolution in how the search engine giant addresses manipulative tactics and low-value content on the internet. Let’s delve into the fundamental changes and their implications for SEO strategies.

Expired Domain Abuse: A New Focus

Google’s inclusion of “expired domain abuse” as a spam policy target signifies a crackdown on domain squatting strategies. This tactic involves purchasing expired domains to manipulate search rankings by hosting content that offers little value to users. The search engine giant’s heightened attention to this practice suggests a recognition of its potential impact on search result relevance and user experience.

Plus, this change also highlights the importance of conducting thorough research before purchasing a domain and avoiding any that may have been previously used for spammy purposes.

Implications of Expired Domain Abuse

Adding expired domain abuse to Google’s spam policies reflects a deeper understanding of how some individuals exploit expired domains for SEO gains. By redirecting pages from expired domains to relevant pages on active sites, they attempt to leverage the authority built by these domains. While not inherently wrong if used ethically, this tactic can lead to manipulative practices aimed at artificially boosting site authority and search rankings.

Additionally, this update also reinforces the importance of regularly monitoring website backlinks and disavowing any from expired domains or spammy sites.

Real-World Examples of Expired Domain Abuse

The case of The Hairpin serves as a real-world example of expired domain abuse. After the original site ceased publication, the domain was purchased and repurposed as an AI-generated content farm. This blatant attempt to capitalize on the domain’s authority highlights the need for Google’s measures to combat such practices and maintain search result integrity.

As seen in this example, the consequences of expired domain abuse can lead to a severe drop in search rankings and traffic, ultimately impacting a site’s overall online presence. Therefore, it is crucial to stay informed about Google’s spam policies and avoid manipulative tactics that could result in penalties.

Site Reputation Abuse: Targeting Parasite SEO

Google’s introduction of “site reputation abuse” targets practices often associated with Parasite SEO (pSEO). This tactic involves publishing third-party pages on established domains with minimal oversight, aiming to manipulate search rankings using the host site’s reputation signals. The policy update underscores Google’s efforts to discourage manipulative strategies that exploit reputable domains for ranking benefits.

As with expired domain abuse, the inclusion of site reputation abuse in Google’s spam policies emphasizes the importance of conducting thorough research and avoiding unethical practices that could harm a website’s online presence.

Addressing Manipulative Content Strategies

Including site reputation abuse in Google’s spam policies emphasizes the importance of editorial oversight and content relevance on established websites. By penalizing strategies that involve hosting third-party content without substantial involvement or oversight, Google aims to maintain the integrity of search results and prevent manipulative SEO tactics.

Examples of Site Reputation Abuse

Google’s examples, such as third-party pages on sports sites with minimal editorial involvement, highlight instances where the primary purpose is to manipulate search rankings rather than provide valuable content to users. This policy update warns website owners and SEO practitioners to engage in practices that compromise search result quality and user trust.

Scaled Content Abuse: Broadening the Scope

The rebranding of “spammy automatically generated content” to “scaled content abuse” represents a broader approach to tackling low-value content across various formats. This update expands the definition to encompass content generated at scale without adding substantial value, regardless of the method used. Google’s focus on content quality and user relevance underscores its commitment to delivering meaningful search experiences.

Diverse Examples of Scaled Content Abuse

Google’s examples of scaled content abuse, including generative AI tools, content scraping, and nonsensical content creation, demonstrate the diverse tactics used to manipulate search rankings. By targeting these practices, Google aims to discourage the proliferation of low-quality content that detracts from the user’s search experience and overall satisfaction.

Impact on SEO Strategies

Google’s spam policy updates highlight the continued importance of providing valuable and relevant content for users. These changes also emphasize the need for ethical and transparent practices in SEO strategies, as any attempts to manipulate search rankings can result in penalties and harm a website’s online presence.

Also, website owners and SEO practitioners should regularly review Google’s policies to stay informed of any changes that could impact their strategies. By focusing on content quality and user experience, websites can build trust with users and search engines, leading to long-term success in the competitive online landscape.


How does the March 2024 core update address manipulating search rankings through link spam?

The March 2024 core update has introduced enhanced search engine algorithms designed to identify and penalize link spam more effectively. This update aims to preserve the integrity of search results by diminishing the impact of artificial links intended to manipulate search rankings. Site owners are encouraged to build natural, high-quality backlinks for their SEO strategy.

What is Google’s stance on creating multiple sites to manipulate search engine rankings?

With the latest spam update, Google has reinforced its guidelines against creating multiple websites that serve the same content or are intended solely to cross-link with each other to manipulate search rankings. This practice, often seen in attempts to dominate search results for specific keywords, is now more likely to be detected and penalized. Site owners should invest time enhancing a single site rather than spreading resources across multiple low-quality sites.

Can you explain how the new policy combats expired domain abuse for SEO purposes?

The new Google spam policy is more assertive against the abuse of expired domains. Some SEO practitioners purchase expired domains with high authority to create or redirect to their sites, attempting to inherit the domain’s ranking power. The March 2024 update improves the detection of such practices, ensuring that the use of expired domains does not unfairly influence search rankings. This aims to maintain a level playing field for all site owners.

How does the update affect sports site hosting and other niche websites that are not very big?

The recent spam update is designed to be equitable across all websites, regardless of their size or niche, including sports site hosting. The primary focus is on the quality of content and the authenticity of SEO practices rather than the site’s scale. Smaller or niche sites that adhere to Google’s guidelines and focus on creating valuable, original content for their audience can still compete effectively in search rankings. The update encourages all site owners to concentrate on legitimate SEO practices to improve their visibility in search results.


Google’s recent spam policy updates reflect its continued efforts to maintain the integrity of search results and deliver valuable experiences for users. By targeting manipulative practices such as expired domain abuse, Google site reputation abuse, and scaled content abuse, Google aims to promote ethical and transparent SEO strategies that prioritize user relevance and satisfaction.

Website owners and SEO practitioners must stay informed about these changes to ensure their strategies align with Google’s policies and maintain their online presence. Ultimately, focusing on creating high-quality content that adds value to users will lead to long-term success in the ever-evolving world of SEO.

So, staying updated with search engine policies is essential for a sustainable online presence. And remember, ethical and transparent practices are vital to achieving long-term success in SEO.

Google To de-Index Spam Content

Google has announced that it will de-index spam content. This decision was made to provide users with a better and more credible search experience. Spam content is also a significant factor in the tech giant’s SGE content display. Google’s main priority is ensuring its users can find high-quality and relevant information using its search engine or search experience.

This move by Google comes as no surprise, as the prevalence of spam content has been a long-standing issue online. With fake news and clickbait articles, it has become increasingly more work for users to sift through the clutter and find authentic and valuable content.

We will discuss why Google decided to de-index spam content and how it will impact bloggers and content creators. We will also provide tips on avoiding being de-indexed and maintaining a solid online presence. So, let’s dive in!

Why De-Index Spam Content?

De-indexing spam content is crucial for maintaining the integrity and accuracy of Google’s search results. With growing internet users relying on Google to find information, the search engine must provide reliable and trustworthy sources.

Spam content often consists of low-quality or irrelevant information that only serves to manipulate search rankings. Spam Content not only creates a poor user experience but also undermines the credibility of Google as a search engine. By de-indexing spam content, Google aims to weed out these unethical practices and promote more genuine content.

With all the misinformation and fake news, it has become even more critical for Google to take action against spam content. With their advanced algorithms and constant updates, Google can detect and flag such content, preventing it from appearing in search results.

google de-indexing spam content

Google Update: Prioritizing Quality, Enforcing De-indexing

The March updates from Google, focusing on quality and enforcing de-indexing, represent a significant move to elevate the content standard in search results. By targeting AI-generated content, expired domain misuse, and authority abuse, these updates aim to eliminate low-quality, spammy material from its indexes.

This reflects Google’s ongoing commitment to improving UX by showing search results that are relevant and of high integrity and value.

For content creators and website owners, the March updates necessitate a shift towards more genuine, valuable content creation and clarifying practices that could lead to de-indexing.

Following these guidelines is crucial for visibility in Google’s search results and demonstrating a commitment to quality and authenticity in the digital space.

Impact on Bloggers and Content Creators

The recent Google updates significantly impact bloggers and content creators, especially those relying on AI-generated content or operating within scaled content production and authority abuse.

With the completion of the spam update, Google has tightened its quality grip, emphasizing originality and penalizing AI-generated and low-quality content. Content creators must now prioritize authenticity and human-driven content to maintain or improve their search engine rankings.

The ongoing core update, incorporating “Helpful Content” standards, further signifies the shift towards value-driven content creation. Bloggers must adapt by auditing their existing content and ensuring future material is both original and valuable to their audience, navigating the evolving SEO landscape to stay competitive in search rankings.

The update also reminds bloggers to avoid manipulative techniques like clickbait or keyword stuffing, which can result in de-indexing and a significant loss of traffic. With this change, bloggers must prioritize quality over quantity and focus on creating content that genuinely offers value to their readers.

Why is this move significant?

Google’s recent updates, targeting AI-generated content and enhancing the “Helpful Content” standard, are crucial for maintaining the integrity and relevance of search results.

By penalizing low-quality, AI-generated, and spammy content, Google aims to elevate the quality of information available to users, ensuring that search results are relevant but also trustworthy and valuable.

This move is important because it promotes a healthier digital ecosystem where originality and quality are prioritized. This will benefit users who seek reliable information and content creators who invest effort and creativity into their work.

For the search engine landscape, this signifies a shift towards more meaningful and user-centric content, encouraging fairer competition among websites and fostering an environment where quality content thrives.

Reasons behind Google’s decision to de-index spam content

Google’s decision to de-index spam content, particularly AI-generated material, stems from a commitment to uphold the quality and trustworthiness of its search results. The move targets the proliferation of low-quality, scaled content production, expired domain misuse, and authority abuse, which can clutter search results and degrade user experience.

By enforcing stricter policies and manual actions against these practices, Google aims to discourage the manipulation of search rankings and promote a level playing field for content creators.

This action reflects Google’s broader strategy to prioritize helpful, original content and ensure that search engine results contain reliable and relevant information, thereby maintaining the integrity of its search ecosystem and user trust.

This move also aligns with Google’s mission to organize information and make it accessible and helpful. By de-indexing spam content, Google is taking a stand against the spread of misinformation and promoting the availability of high-quality and legitimate information online. This decision ultimately benefits users and content creators, creating a reliable and trustworthy environment for everyone.

How to Avoid Being De-Indexed

To avoid being de-indexed by Google, content creators and website owners should focus on producing original, high-quality content that provides real value to their audience. Avoiding using AI to generate content in bulk is crucial, as Google’s recent updates precisely target and penalize such practices.

Instead, prioritize human creativity and expertise in content creation. Ensure compliance with Google’s Webmaster Guidelines, avoiding expired domain misuse and authority abuse. Regularly audit your Website for spammy or low-quality content and rectify any issues promptly.

Emphasize the user experience, ensuring your site is informative, easy to navigate, and engaging. Staying updated with Google’s algorithm changes and adapting your SEO strategies is essential to maintaining a good standing in search results.

Most importantly, focus on building a loyal and engaged audience through genuine and valuable content. Ultimately, providing users with helpful and trustworthy information will not only prevent Google from de-indexing your Website but also help it thrive in the long run.

Why bloggers and content creators should prioritize quality over quantity

It can be tempting for content creators to focus on churning out a high volume of content to stay relevant and competitive. However, as Google’s recent updates have shown, quality is ultimately more important than quantity when creating content that ranks well in search results.

By prioritizing quality over quantity, bloggers and content creators can ensure they provide real value to their audience and build a loyal following. High-quality content is also more likely to be shared by readers, increasing its reach and potential for backlinks.

Moreover, focusing on quality allows creators to put in the effort and creativity required to produce original and helpful content, ultimately setting them apart from competitors and building their authority in their niche.

In the long run, quality content also has a longer lifespan, remaining relevant and attracting traffic for an extended period. Therefore, prioritizing quality over quantity is crucial for maintaining or improvement of the search engine rankings.

Challenges and opportunities for content creators in light of these updates

While Google’s updates may pose challenges for content creators, they also present unique opportunities. Content creators can stand out in a sea of low-quality and spammy content by focusing on quality and originality. Original content can increase organic traffic, user engagement, and brand credibility.

Additionally, as Google prioritizes helpful and relevant content, content creators can strive to create more user-centric and valuable material. Helpful content benefits their audience and aligns with Google’s standards, increasing the likelihood of visibility in search results.

Furthermore, by avoiding AI-generated content and spammy practices, content creators can build a strong foundation for their Website’s long-term success. By prioritizing quality and adhering to Google’s guidelines, content creators can establish their content as trustworthy, and prove themselves as a sources of true information, benefiting their audience and the larger digital ecosystem.

And, as Google continues to crack down on spam and low-quality content, content creators who prioritize quality can also gain a competitive advantage over those who resort to less reputable tactics. In the long run, this can increase the credibility, visibility, and success of their Website or brand.

Mistakes to Avoid

There are several mistakes that content creators should avoid to prevent being de-indexed by Google. These include:

      • Using Low-quality AI-generated content in bulk: As mentioned before, Google’s recent updates target and penalize the use of AI-generated low-quality content. Avoiding this practice is crucial to maintaining a good standing in search results.
      • Expired Domain Misuse: Using expired domains to manipulate search rankings can result in penalties from Google. Content creators should avoid this tactic and instead focus on creating valuable and original content.
      • Keyword stuffing: Overusing keywords to improve search rankings can backfire and result in penalties from Google. Instead, focus on creating natural and engaging content that provides value to your audience.
      • Violating Webmaster Guidelines: Content creators need to stay up to date with Google’s Webmaster Guidelines. Violating these guidelines, such as participating in link schemes or cloaking, can lead to penalties and de-indexing from Google.

By avoiding these mistakes and prioritizing quality in content creation, content creators can maintain a strong presence in search results and continue to grow their audience and credibility.


How can I remove spam content from Google search engine results?

First, identify the web pages in question to remove spam content from Google search engine results. Then, use Google Search Console (previously known as Google Webmaster Tools) to request the removal of these pages from the Google index. Ensure that the content is also deleted or not indexed on your web server to prevent search engine bots, including Google’s user agent, from accessing it in the future.

How can duplicate content impact my site’s presence in SERP, and how do I address it?

Duplicate content can negatively affect your site’s ranking in Google search results because it confuses search engine bots about which version of the content to index and rank. To address this, use canonical tags to indicate the preferred version of the content or remove or noindex the duplicate pages. Regularly monitoring your site through Google Search Console can help identify and fix these issues promptly.

Can spam content affect my website’s ranking on search engines other than Google?

Yes, spam content can also impact your website’s ranking in search engines. Each search engine has its algorithms and guidelines for indexing web pages, but all aim to provide users with high-quality, relevant search results. Removing spam content and ensuring your Website adheres to SEO best practices is crucial for maintaining good standing across all search engines.

How do search engine bots determine which web pages to de-index for spam content?

Google’s user agent and other Search engine bots crawl the web to discover and index quality content. These bots use sophisticated algorithms to analyze content for quality and relevance. They may flag these pages for de-indexing if they detect spam content, such as keyword stuffing, cloaking, or duplicate content. Regular audits using tools like Google Search Console can help you locate and fix issues that might lead to de-indexing by search engines.


In conclusion, Google’s recent updates highlight the importance of quality content and staying compliant with their Webmaster Guidelines. Content creators should prioritize providing value to their audience through original and informative material and avoiding spammy practices.

By doing so, they can maintain good standing in search results, build a loyal following, and establish themselves as reputable sources in their niche. Ultimately, quality content remains the key to long-term success for bloggers and content creators in the digital landscape.

So, prioritize quality over quantity, and your Website will thrive in the long run.

Dream Warrior Group, a Los Angeles-based web design and digital marketing Company, provides solutions for your online marketing needs. Our expertise includes Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Social Media Posts and marketing, and Google PPC campaigns. Call us now at 818.610.3316 or click here.