The algorithm developed in late November early December 2021!

In early December, Google unveiled an algorithm update that proved to be the most significant local search update in several years. The international search giant confirmed the update on December 16, 2021 on Twitter. Google has described this local SEO update as “a rebalance of various factors thought to drive local search results”.

November / December 2021. Local SEO update, official information from Google

Of course, as usual, the search engine remained very vague in terms of evolving criteria.

It is still out of the question for Google to reveal to SEOs the weight of every local SEO factor, although they are quite well known to web marketers.

Only the weight of each factor in the algorithm remains a real secret.

What are the top 3 local SEO positioning factors in 2021/2022?

The three factors that determine local search rankings are:

  1. proximity,
  2. relevance,
  3. importance.

Just as in “classical” natural referencing there are 3 pillars (technical, semantic, popular), in local natural referencing this is the case with these three main factors.

Although Google does not reveal the precise weight of each factor, it is evident that with the rebalance that began on November 30, 2021, proximity is gaining more and more weight.

These changes could affect your business profile on the Google Local Business Profile (and those of your competitors).

Therefore, we strongly urge you to track your local SEO positions using a dedicated SEO tool to track this type of evolution.

What to understand from this local SEO update

Although Google has not officially announced any changes to its local search optimization guidelines, update does not change the company’s local search goals, however instead it focuses on improving the quality of local search results.

In other words, this improvement is achieved by increasing the difficulty of proximity in its ranking.

Previously, the relevance of business listing to search terms played a larger role in determining top rankings in local search results.

This often meant that the SERP returned a search result even though the job was not close to the search engine location.

Focusing more on proximity, this update helps combat optimizations made by SEOs that have managed to trick the algorithm and gain a high position in local SEO on search keywords even if their location doesn’t exactly match the search.

Over time, more and more companies have learned to manipulate their Google my Business ads to return to demands where it was illegitimate for them to position themselves so high because they are geographically too far from the actual location of internet users. .

1- Location, local SEO criteria is now extremely important!

Following this local SEO update, companies close to search engines should see an improved presence in the local SEO SERP and Google’s local package.

Conversely, companies that are further away from researchers will see a decline in their local share of the voice.

2- Google now better detects and penalizes keyword clutter on its local SEO algorithm

While the algorithm update emphasizes proximity, Google’s long-standing and closely related secondary goal is to fight spam.

Please note, to some extent, that the visibility of companies with over-optimized names is sometimes penalized by this algorithmic update (however, the statement should be qualified by the fact that the most vulnerable jobs are those filling keywords throughout their file (examples of practices that should not be reproduced)). .

3- This update does not apply to the one about changing the local package to the desktop version

While all of this is happening in a row, this local algorithmic update is clearly not related to changing the user interface for the local package to the desktop version.

Now, as seen in our dedicated article, only on the desktop, the results are no longer displayed below the map but to the left of the map.

What to remember from this new update of Google’s algorithm dedicated to local SEO

The latest Google update of the local search algorithm gives more importance to proximity as a ranking factor.

The rebalance already has a visible impact on search results:

Important and relevant companies that are geographically further away from search engines see lower rankings in the local package, while closer and equally relevant companies with less importance in the past have higher rankings.

Refusing to consider keywords in the business name now further protects local SERPs from keyword clutter and SPAM (although it still works).

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