Is Google Sunsetting the Local Finder in Favor of Google Maps?

Yesterday, I was doing some spam research and noticed that in Safari, when clicking the More Places link at the bottom of the desktop 3-Pack it was taking me into Maps. 

Thinking it a temporary glitch I switched to Chrome and the behavior was normal and it took me into the Local Finder. 

Today, both Safari & Chrome, when logged in on my Mac, are directing me to Maps when I select “More Places” but when not logged in, it directs me to the Local Finder.

On the search car insurance salisbury md when logged in I am take to this URL: https://www.google.com/maps/search/car+insurance+salisbury+md/@38.3663222,-75.6638575,12z/data=!3m1!4b1

When not logged in I am taken to this URL:

https://www.google.com/search?q=car+insurance+salisbury+md&oq=car+insurance+salisbury+md&aqs=chrome..69i57j69i60l2.864j0j0&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

When logged in I am directed into Maps from the More Places link
When not logged in I am directed into the Local Finder from the More Places link

Why does it Matter?

The Local Finder, rolled out during the summer of 2015, as a listing view that replaced the single listing view that had been rolled out during the fall fo 2014. It has been a fast reliable and lightweight way to explore more listings related to the primary search without the overhead of going into Maps. In fact, on mobile, I am still be directed into the Local Finder.

I have, in some accounts, seen a tremendous jump in Map views in their Insights of late and this could very well be the reason.

Google, in their recent positioning of Maps as both a better local discovery and social play, may be trying to grease the skids of Maps ascendancy by directing more traffic to that subdomain.

Maps historically been less capable of searching for and identifying spam at scale as well.

And I would imagine that this change could affect traditional rank trackers as well.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Is Google Sunsetting the Local Finder in Favor of Google Maps? by

8 thoughts on “Is Google Sunsetting the Local Finder in Favor of Google Maps?”

  1. Just noticed, although I’m still taken to the Local Finder on mobile.

    On desktop at least, it’s now a real struggle to find your way back to the organic results.

  2. @martin
    Yes on mobile, at the present, would require going to a different app which would be a horrendous experience from my Point of view particularly on iPhone where Google Maps is optional.

    And yes it is hard to get back to search. That would be consistent with my theory noted above that google is trying to stack the deck for searchers using Maps for more discovery, more social, and more of the future everything.

    It is a local world after all and G Maps is Google’s interface to that

    1. @Mike
      Ah, good point on iPhone.

      On the plus side, we may no longer have to explain to clients what a Local Finder is.

    2. Personally, I think its a better option. Yes with iPhone it may be be tricky but I think it helps in fulfilling the social part you talked about. In 2019 everyone is looking for app type social experience.

  3. It seems like they are in dire need of some consolidation and focus which is what they’ve finally been putting some resources towards. I don’t know which will be the view seen consistently across all devices or if there will be one but there sure should be. Depending on the city I’m searching for results in I get different results whether I get maps or search. It seems tied to cities more than anything.

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