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Google SERP with just 5 organic results!

Ash Nallawalla

31 October 2010

Local Search, SEO

The new Place Search by Google is causing a stir in SEO circles. I am still seeing many layouts, not just the fat one which resembles 7 organic results tagged with a balloon and their Place Pages link, with a map to the right.

But I didn’t expect to see a SERP with just 5 organic results. Behold:

Google SERP with just 5 organic results!
Google SERP with just 5 organic results!

Try it: Byron Bay accommodation (in

If this becomes the norm, SEO companies will rejoice while or be slashing their wrists. Yes, a customer with a #6 ranking will now have a “Page 2” result. Time to check the wording on the contracts. It could also spur a boost in SEO effort for such #6 to #10 ranking websites.

I checked the Search Settings – 10 results per page is still the smallest number you can choose. This search term is one of the more competitive travel searches in Australia, so there is no shortage of relevant search inventory.

Are you panicking or rejoicing?

Earlier post: Place Search – local search results on Google will never be the same again

Ash Nallawalla

Search strategist experienced in large, complex websites. Ash's Google+ profile

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  • Stever on 1 November 2010

    The new merged local results are organic too. If you look closer they are using the title tag and description from home page of site. Essentially the results are organic, if that results also has a Place page then a map marker gets included with their organic listing. In some cases a few Places only listings get stuck in the mix.

    So you are not simply seeing 5 organic results in that particular search. I count 10 where 1 through 5 are organic blended with Places, 6 and 7 are Places results only, and 8 to 12 are organic but with no place markers added.

    • Ash on 1 November 2010

      I was perhaps not very clear. Here is another example of a “10 results” SERP.
      11 results

      Here there are indeed 8 plain organic results, 3 more with place markers, but then only 5 place pages, IOW we are getting fewer in total, for a competitive category.

  • Stever on 1 November 2010

    It may not be fewer choices. When the new version was first rolling out and I could see it in Chrome browser while other browsers still had old 7-pack map at top with organic below, I compared results for many of my clients. Old SERPS had the 7 local listings up top and some of those same businesses were ranking well organically below the map area. In other words some got double listings. Now the dominant ranking factor is the organic algo, if that organic result has a Place page it gets a map marker and address included as well. So for that search example there may very well be the same number of total choices as it existed in old version, just no more double listings for those that were ranking in top 7 in the map and ranking in top 10 organically.

  • Ash on 1 November 2010

    Good point about the double listings but couldn’t G pull one more from the next page? Now the “10 results per page” doesn’t add up. 🙂

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