Posted on October 29, 2013 in SEO by cmblogger
Launched in June, Google’s new Carousel features a row of black framed images across the top of the SERPs for certain kinds of queries. With up to 20 results, they’re mostly found for travel, dining and entertainment related searches. As you’ve probably already noticed, each Carousel slide displays an image coupled with relevant search information, which if you click on it reveals an address, phone number and most prominently, recent consumer reviews.
If you’re a local business hoping for greater visibility on the SERPs, this is going to be an important new feature to factor into any digital marketing strategy. While no one is exactly sure how big the Carousel is likely to become for Google, everyone can benefit from the steps necessary to optimize for it.
If you haven’t already, create a page for both Google Places for Business and Google+. Upload attractive, high resolution images for both, and order them in terms of importance. Finally, make sure your customers are reviewing you on the search engine. According to a recent study, high online review scores translate into better placement on the Carousel. For hotels alone, “earned media” (i.e. positive reviews on Google) are already an important factor in first page Google rankings.
For 2014, it’s another tool in your SEO kit bag that may prove enormously helpful. In time, Google is expected to utilize these types of images for even more categories, as Carousel is now also appearing for some sports and education results pages too.