Not only was there a Google algorithm update during April, but there were many digital changes and things to discuss on our visits to the Pirate2 studios this month. From an update on mobile search habits of users to URL changes and local search gaining a new competitor, it’s been all systems go as we’ve stepped into spring.
Here we break our radio shows down into one, easy and manageable chunk that you can refer to again whenever you need to for reference.
“Near me” mobile search queries on the rise
Finding a product or service nearby your location used to take a combination of the Yellow Pages, asking around and and a map that refused to fold back in the same way. But now, thanks to smartphones and tablets in our pockets and bags wherever we go, users can search for things around them whenever they want.
The number of searches that include the phrase “near me”, “nearby” and “closest” are rapidly growing in search results month on month. Whether users are on the hunt for a gym, petrol station or supermarket, Google search interest “near me” is notably higher at weekends and around the holidays, when people are more likely to be out of their daily routines. The majority of these searches also come from mobile.
New Competition for Google local
In the US, Amazon have released a new marketplace for local service providers that will give Google and Yelp a run for their money.
Amazon Home Services aims to help users find any service that they might require – from housekeeping to home maintenance, to grazing goats to keep that lawn in check. The aim of the service is to vet providers by making Amazon Home an invite-only marketplace – the company plans to do background checks on all providers before extending an invitation to trade. To help them stand out from the crowd, Amazon will also offer users a “happiness guarantee” and verify reviews to make sure that they are from genuine customers.
The service is currently only available in New York, Los Angeles, Seattle and San Francisco but is likely to be rolled out to other areas soon.
Google mobile algorithm update
We know we’ve talked about April’s mobile search update quite a bit already, but we’ll keep this one short and sweet.
The update was rolled out on April 21st, but has so far had no immediate impact on mobile SERPs. However, this doesn’t mean it won’t and make take a few weeks for users to notice the impact of this most recent change!