Thoughts About Local Knowledge Panels Not Showing for Branded Searches

Last week a number of agencies noted that theirs and their client’s Knowledge Panel were not showing on a non- geo-modified brand search when they had been previously.

I don’t doubt that Google changed something. The reports were too pervasive to think that it was just a Google brain fart.

What I think that they changed was the relative importance of Knowledge Panels vis a vis the other universal results.

Google has stated that they have a relevance value of disparate types of results (ie video, organic, KP, etc) that orders search results to any query.

I assume that for any query there is a threshold for any given type of answer (ie video etc) to make in into the results.

Have you ever seen a local website outrank a KP result for a brand search? Last week we saw a number of them.

That implies to me that all of the sudden that number that was applied to the KP that dictates when and where a KP shows was lowered compared to the website.

A similar logic applies in the missing branded KP results: the newly ranked KP entity does not now meet the threshold value required to appear for that given value due to its lower relative value.

Obviously my hypothesis is just that. But for a start it is consistent with the facts.

Next step would be to test my hypothesis and see if with some combination of tactics you can escalate the relative importance of the entity for a simple name only brand search.

Ideas to test:
– reviews at Google and Yelp and around the web that include the brand name
branded mentions at high profile sites
– more branded anchor text across the web
– increasing the use of brand name in title tags and headlines of the web the website – ie lead with brand on your home page title tag
– perhaps some internal branded links back to the home page from the about us or contact us page

Another source of ideas to test would be to do a local comparison of your location’s attributes to those of local entities that did not lose their KP

Like I said, it’s just a hypotheses. But it is one that at least offer a path to testing to see if some of these can be recovered.

Alternative ideas? Suggestions? Let me know.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Thoughts About Local Knowledge Panels Not Showing for Branded Searches by

6 thoughts on “Thoughts About Local Knowledge Panels Not Showing for Branded Searches”

  1. I noticed many new threads about this issue in the Google forum starting about last week. It was the marketing companies that noticed first as you mentioned, and I thought that maybe the change only happened to specific GMB categories since they were mostly asking about their own listings.

  2. Still an issue for one of our brands. Is there a solution? It’ll come up if we include the city name

    1. @Thomas
      Do more and better brand building on line; branded in bound links, reviews with brand mentions, news articles with brand mentions ETC ETC ETC. Be sure that you lead with Brand in your Title and H1 tags on your home page and build internal branded links to the home page

  3. I am half relieved and half bewildered after reading this article. Relieved as our agency’s KP is missing when performing a branded search, and we thought it may be isolated to our agency. Bewildered because most of our competitor’s KP panel is still showing with a branded search. I am grateful for this article as it has been the only information I could find on the topic. Thank you!

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