As of this year, the task of updating the Local Search Ecosystem has been handed to Darren Shaw of Whitespark, who also inherited David Mihm’s other well-known brainchild, the Local Search Ranking Factors report. Last week, Darren released Local Search Ecosystem 2017, a bold departure in visual design and a much-needed update to the last edition, from 2014.
For many years, Physical Address in City of Search was the most important ranking factor, but it has now been overtaken by Proximity of Address to the Point of Search (Searcher-Business Distance). As such, the canonical local search use case has become a mobile user searching for a business nearby his or her current location.
During a presentation at Street Fight’s Local Data Summit in Denver Tuesday, David Mihm, director of local search strategy at Moz, argued that a few key innovations will keep the search giant on top. The company’s massive local data set, said Mihm, offers a distinct advantage that will allow the firm to leave competitors further and further behind.