Last week, Google began testing a feature that allows small businesses to post what Search Engine Land is calling “local business cards” directly in search results.
The update was first noticed by Mike Blumenthal while searching for “Engagement Rings Buffalo” Google later confirmed with Search Engine Land that they are testing this new feature with a small number of local businesses.
The cards are displayed in search results as a carousel, which features images or GIFs and links to the featured content.
They are similar to Google’s Candidate Cards, which were recently rolled out to allow candidates to publish posts directly to search results.
Here’s what a search for A Healthy Choice Massage and Day Spa, one of the businesses Search Engine Land found to be participating in the experiment looks like:
Searchers can share directly from the search results.
Or they can click the link below the image, which will take them to the featured content. And clicking on the image/GIF will take the searcher to a Google Post page.
There’s no word on whether or not Google will roll out this feature to other small businesses, but if this is rolled out to everyone, this could be huge for local SEO.
Since the cards are sometimes displayed in general keyword searches such as Mike Blumenthal’s “Engagement Rings Buffalo” search (and since there’s a big focus on social sharing) this could mean a lot more brand awareness for local businesses that participate in the cards.