Posted June 18, 2013 1:15 pm by with 3 comments

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Local search, especially for restaurants, is getting much more interesting as Google rolls out its local search ‘carousel’ to desktop search. It is available in English in the US only for now.

Basically, how one ranks in the carousel will be the new ‘victory’ for local search. The post on Google+ announcing the update tells us

Starting today, when you search Google for restaurants, bars or other local places on your desktop, you’ll see an interactive “carousel” of local results at the top of the page.

Give it a go—type or say “mexican restaurants,” or try any similar search for restaurants, bars or hotels. Click on one of the places in the carousel to get more details on it, including its overall review-based score, address and photos. If you want to see more places, click the arrow at the right of the carousel. And you can zoom in on the map that appears below the carousel to restrict your search to only places in a specific area.

While some iPad and Nexus tablet users have seen this new look since December, we’re excited to expand to desktop. The interactive “carousel” is rolling out in English in the U.S.—we’ll add more features and languages over time.

Take a look for a search I did in Raleigh.

Google Local Search Carousel for Restaurants

It is going to take some time to get used to and will now put even greater emphasis on certain local businesses getting control of images, reviews and more.

What do you think?

  • cynthialil

    I feel left out. I can’t get that bar to pop when I search. It’s a nice way to highlight businesses in the area and should go a long way toward helping these folks get more exposure. But now, more than ever, image is everything! I suggest that every restaurant owner search Google right now to see how their business is displayed. I’ll bet a few people are going to be surprised and not in a good way.

  • GMR Website Maintenance

    The new carousel looks great. The users would find it fantastic to make a search on Google. Thanks to Google for making internet search interesting!

  • The “carousel” is a reminder that businesses need to update their Google+ Local Pages with new content. Because the carousel is basically a visual snapshot of a business’s local page, companies need to do more than just claim this listing so that it shows up in Google Maps. Images, links to content, and even video need to be added (and updated) to the Google+ Local Page so that if the business does show up in the carousel, Google will be able to pull images and other info from the page.