Breaking Down Your Google Search Results

Breaking Down Your Google Search Results


Content Writer: Lauren Snyder Lauren Snyder Content Marketing Coordinator

Doing a Google search is pretty easy but actually understanding the search results may be a little confusing.

So, what’s the difference between the ads, local results and organic results? No need to struggle anymore as we’re here explain what each section of your Google search result means!

Google Search Results: What’s What?

When you do a Google search, there are typically three sections that pop up: paid advertisements, local search results and organic search results.

How do you know which one you are supposed to pick? Well, it depends what you’re looking for!

Let’s talk about each section, why they appear and what one is the best to choose for your situation. To help you visualize the search results, there will be examples of each section based on a Google search of the word pizza.

Paid Advertisements

Advertising is everywhere, even in your Google search results! Paid advertisements will show up at the top of your search results.

To differentiate the ads between the local or organic results, they will have the word "Ad" next to them! 

It’s important to note that businesses must pay to make sure they’re the very first result showing up on the page.

While paid advertising has some great benefits and can help give your business a boost, these results aren’t permanent. To continue being in the top spot, your business must keep putting money behind advertising.

With paid advertisements, specific targeting is chosen based on location, so an ad shouldn’t appear if that business or service is not within a reasonable distance.

Local Search Results

In the middle section of your search is where the local results will appear. This section is also commonly referred to as the Map and Pushpin Section.

These results are based on different factors, some of which include the location of where you’re searching and the business’s star-rating.

Local results are great for finding businesses that are close by no matter where you are.

Some consumers previously used the phrase "near me" when searching for local businesses. However, since many businesses have locally-optimized websites nowadays, the phrase has become obsolete when doing a Google search. 

Organic Search Results

At the bottom of your Google search results are the organic results. What appears here are websites that contain content that is related to your search. However, it’s not necessarily location specific.

You’ll notice that most of my search results are actual pizza restaurants, but one of them is from TripAdvisor and another is a Wikipedia article.

Since my search for pizza was extremely vague, I didn’t get specific results. If I were to search “what is pizza?” my results would be completely different, and it wouldn’t show as many pizza restaurants.

Why Do Search Results Matter?

As a consumer, it's important to understand what the results mean so you can make the best choice when looking for a business.

As a business, it's crucial that you understand where you appear in the search results. Each section of the Google search results is valuable, but you need to consider your business's goals.

Did you know that local search is the best way to get your business in front of a consumer? If your online presence is optimized, this makes it much easier for consumers to find your business. 

But how do you optimize your online presence?

Well, some of the most important factors include having great reviews, consistent business information and a locally-optimized website. With 80 percent of all searches on Google being locally focused, businesses must optimize their online presence.

Final Thoughts

Every section of Google search results has its own benefits. To make sure your business can be found locally, it's vital that your online presence is optimized. 

Not sure where to start? Our experts have the experience to help! Request a demo with one of our digital marketing consultants today to learn all about our local search marketing.


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Local Search Question

With 80% of searches having local intent, do you recommend building website's out with optimizing for local first and then focusing outward past the business' city?

Tuesday, February 26, 2019 by Andrew Lopez