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Google Showing Review Snippets in Local Search Results

By piranha

29th August 2017

This interesting development has seen excerpts from genuine Google user reviews being shown beneath company listings. For instance, if you searched ‘hairdresser in Preston’ on Google, a list of salons would appear with the first line of a review displayed in the results.

Who made the Discovery?

Search Engine RoundTable’s Barry Schwartz highlighted this news thanks to a tip-off from contributor Tom Waddington. Here’s their example:

As you can see, each company is listed with a review snippet. Google has used reviews as a trust signal for a long time now, and it makes sense that the search giant might want to tap into all that juicy user-generated content.

Although these tests have been observed stateside, we’ve been unable to recreate the results here in the UK. This is nothing new; Google often tests new features in the US and Canada before rolling out across the globe.

Why show Review Snippets?

There are a few reasons why Google would want to show review snippets within search results. The focus has been firmly on the searcher for years now; Google wants the web to be as accessible, secure and useful to end-users as possible.

The search engine’s Webmaster Guidelines explicitly tells webmasters to ask themselves: ‘does this help my users?’.

From Google’s point of view, reviews are extremely useful. They can be observed in order to ascertain the reliability and trustworthiness of companies from a (supposedly) impartial standpoint.

Many of us now search for product or service reviews before parting with our hard-earned cash online; as such, reviews are a powerful trust signal and an important part of e-commerce.

What is a Local Pack?

A Local Pack is a set of search results related to a specific geographical region or location. Many searchers add their location to the end of their search terms in an attempt to gain more accurate and useful search results.

When an internet user performs this kind of search, a Google Map will be displayed in the SERP (Search Engine Results Page) with individual companies highlighted on it. A list of those companies in then displayed underneath; this is where review snippets have been observed.

How do you appear in the Local Pack?

To appear in the Local Pack for geographically-specific searches, your company should be fully set up on Google My Business. This is a service which every company should utilise.

Google My Business will record your contact details, web address, location and more to make it easier for customers to find you.

When you create an account, a Google+ account will also be created simultaneously. This social media platform enables visitors to write reviews of your business, complete with reviews and ratings out of 5 stars. Snippets are being taken from these Google reviews.

Local SEO from Piranha

Local SEO is a very important part of optimising your website. Google My Business should be a first port-of-call for improving your exposure and building your company’s online presence.

At Piranha, we’re experts of local SEO and we’ve set up Google My Business accounts for hundreds of clients. After this initial exercise, we also have a comprehensive list of local citations to complete. Our citations and local SEO expertise can help give your website the best start to its online life and be hugely beneficial to your business.

To discuss your local SEO, Google+ or My Business accounts, please contact the Piranha team today. Call 01772 888331 or email us at to get started!

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