Bing shakes up local search results

Recently, Bing has been tinkering with its user interface to create an optimal display for local search results, BrightLocal reports.

The search engine has been testing two designs, which Search Engine Watch notes are now available to most U.S. users.

The first new iteration places local search results in a box in the middle of the page, as opposed to the previous location at the top of the page. According to BrightLocal, mixing local results with organic results effectively lessens the prominence of local companies on Bing, likely meaning less clicks.

Another new interface being tested involves expanded results with a scrolling right-hand map. The results will show review count and star ratings aggregated from multiple local directories, meaning positive reviews on sites like Yelp may carry even more weight. Also, a map displaying pins of featured local companies scrolls with the user on the right-hand side, obscuring paid-per-click results. There are also links for "details" and "directions."

"Keeping on top of these changes is essential to maintaining a reliable service and delivering accurate ranking results for our users," the media outlet points out.