Google Maps Expanded Local OneBox Makes Brief Reappearance

Update 1/21/08 9:00 pmThe Local Onebox 10 pack is now appearing across a broad range of searches once again. On searches that previously returned the authoritative Local OneBox it is now returning the 10-Pack or no local results at all.

Last week there were sitings of a new improved and expanded Local OneBox. They have reappeared temporarily in my local searches:

newlocalonebox.jpg

I speculated in my last post that it was taking up something less than 1/3 more room. It actually is only occupying 10% more vertical room than the previous Local OneBox by making the pins smaller and going to one line instead of the three lines in the “neo-classic” Onebox.

Of equal interest is that the area of coverage provided by the map is greater. The implies that it is more likely for the Local OneBox listing and the top 10 map listing to be the same. In the past, the difference that sometime occurred between the Local Onebox top 3 and the Google Maps top 3 was due to the different area of map coverage between the two (explained by Bill Slawski in his post on Location Prominence). This question of the difference, how it happened and why it was problematic was explored here and here. I did not have time to test this prior to the result no longer appearing. But one potential end user benefit would be matching results between the OneBox and Maps.

Here is a screen comparison between the “neo-classic” 3 pack and the new Local OneBox 10 pack:

oneboxcompare500w.jpg

To view this comparison at full size click here. Note also that in the exact same time frame (Sunday at 1:00) the search Buffalo NY Restaurant returned the neo-classic Local OneBox while the Bradford Pa Restaurant returned the LocalOnebox 10-Pack. Within the hour the Bradford search once again returned the LocalOneBox triplet result.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Google Maps Expanded Local OneBox Makes Brief Reappearance by

6 thoughts on “Google Maps Expanded Local OneBox Makes Brief Reappearance”

  1. Good catch, Mike!
    I’ve been unable to make this result happen myself, so I appreciate the full-sized image you put up of this.

    It would certainly make competing in competitive industries easier if it didn’t have to be ‘top 3 or nowhere’.

    Miriam

  2. Hi Miriam-

    Yes, there are advantages to the Local OneBox 10 pack that make getting into the space much easier in any given market. It would change the dynamic of needing to to do as much to rank as well…that would be a good thing.

    I would love to look at Google’s logs and/or heat maps to know how users handle the info and where they actually do click. I could imaging that it be better to be 10 than to be 7 or 6…but who knows if this is coming or they are just testing.

    Mike

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Comments links could be nofollow free.