SEO Basics: Google has announced 6 local search updates for 2023
Google announced seven local search updates at its annual Search On virtual conference.
Google announced seven new features and updates to local search at its annual Search On conference.
These changes will significantly improve how people search for neighborhoods, businesses, and restaurants in Google.
The following changes to local search will be implemented soon:
- Find restaurants by dish.
- Learn about restaurant specialties.
- More digital menu support
- Live View enhancements in Google Maps
- Aerial views of well-known landmarks
- View from Above
- Checks for neighborhood vibes
Read on for more information on these updates in the sections below.
Find Restaurants By Dish
Google is expanding its restaurant search capabilities to include the ability to find nearby restaurants that serve a specific dish.
In the new search experience, you can type in a query like “soup dumplings near me,” and Google will return a list of restaurants that serve it.
Filters for vegetarian dishes, spicy dishes, and other cuisines allow you to narrow your search even further.
Learn About Restaurant Specialties
Local restaurants frequently have a distinct quality that is well-known in the community.
It can be difficult to determine the quality of a Google search because star ratings do not always tell the whole story.
Google will soon assist searchers in previewing and evaluating restaurants in order to better understand what makes them unique.
Here’s an example of a local restaurant listing with “people say” highlights at the top of the screen.
Google analyzes images and reviews using machine learning to determine what makes a location unique.
More Digital Menu Support
Google is expanding its coverage of digital menus while improving their visuals and keeping them up to date.
Google explains in a blog post how it can add more digital menus without any additional work from restaurant owners:
“We combine menu information provided by people and merchants, as well as information found on restaurant websites that use open data sharing standards.” To accomplish this, we employ cutting-edge image and language understanding technologies, including our Multitask Unified Model.”
Google says it will highlight the most popular dishes and highlight various dietary options, such as vegetarian and vegan.
Improvements to Google Maps’ Live View
Google is updating Live View, a feature introduced three years ago that allows you to navigate directions while looking through the viewfinder of your phone’s camera.
You’ll soon be able to search for items in your immediate vicinity, in addition to navigating from one location to another.
Google provides an example of using Live View to locate an ATM within walking distance of a person’s current location:
Search with Live View will be available in London, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, Paris, and Tokyo in the coming months.
Landmark Aerial Views
Google has over 250 photorealistic aerial views of global landmarks available today.
Google does not list all of the landmarks that have aerial views, only that they “span everything from the Tokyo Tower to the Acropolis.”
You can go beyond street view with an immersive view experience that takes you inside buildings and other establishments.
Furthermore, the immersive view will show you how busy a location will be and what the weather will be like on a specific date and time.
The immersive view will be available on Android and iOS in Los Angeles, London, New York, San Francisco, and Tokyo in the coming months.