Originally at http://tracking.feedpress.it/link/9375/2293132

Posted by JoyHawkins

I work with a lot of insurance agents and they often tell me that their biggest competitors are the other insurance agents that work for the same company as them. As it is with most big brands, there are multiple offices in the same city and those individual locations all want to rank first on Google for the exact same thing.

An accidental discovery

I stumbled across something a few months ago when troubleshooting ranking for one of our insurance clients, and everyone I’ve shared this with was just as surprised as I was.

The discovery? Google filters out a ton of pages for big brands (organically), which seems to have a direct impact on which locations rank in the local 3-pack.

To illustrate this, I’ll look at a few examples. Usually when I search for a branded term, the people that rank high in the 3-pack also rank high organically, as illustrated below.

What’s interesting is that you’ll notice there are only 3 organic results that belong to this brand before you start seeing small business directories like Yellowpages or Yelp.

However, when you add &filter=0 to the end of the URL string, you will see that most of these location pages are being filtered out. Adding this search operator to the URL is the same as if you went to the last page of results and click the message that states:

In order to show you the most relevant results, we have omitted some entries very similar to the [X] already displayed. If you like, you can repeat the search with the omitted results included.

This isn’t just happening to one brand; it’s happening to most.

<img src="http://d2v4zi8pl64nxt.cloudfront.net/what-brands-need-know-about-googles-filter/568b02dc98…

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