Let’s use a real-life example that you’ll quickly recognize.
You type a keyword or phrase into a search engine. You search “best pizza in Los Angeles” in Google. When returning results, GOOGLE’S SERP factors in the authority and relevance of each website to determine which sites will be most helpful for you, the searcher. Because SERPs are customized based on each user’s browsing history,
searching in L.A. at precisely the same time. A little creepy? Yes. Useful? Yes!
As a consumer, you probably don’t think much about what happens once you hit enter on a search for dry cleaners in your area. You want your shirts laundered. But, as an up-and-coming savvy digital marketer, you must familiarize yourself with the fundamentals of the SERP. Why? Because SERPs are precious real estate opportunity
those opportunities for the best online visibility.
Google dominates the search market, so we will continue using it in this discussion. Through Google, several consistent components are industry-independent and, therefore, indispensable to you.
PAID SEARCH RESULTS on the SERP. With Google, two kinds of paid search ads may appear text ads and shopping ads. An “Ad” icon.
Shopping ads appear in a row at the top of the page or on the right-hand side of the search results. If you’re uncertain about viewing a paid ad, look for the word “Sponsored” to confirm.
Though organic search results (those that have earned rather than paid for ranking) get clicked more often than ads, Google’s paid search ads can provide great returns when they’re well managed in Google AdWords.
LOCAL RESULTS When a user searches for a local business, service, or product, Google responds with either a local pack or a Knowledge Graph—both managed in Google My Business.
The local pack is connected to Google Maps, which displays a snippet of a map alongside three local business listings, depending on the location of the person searching.
The local Knowledge Graph is associated with branded searches, typically related to a particular business location. This snapshot helps searchers see relevant information about a business in one place.
ORGANIC RESULTS As noted above, organic results are unpaid search results ranked based on several factors controlled by SEO. Users click organic results over paid ads more than nine times out of 10, which is why it’s so crucial that your SEO strategy gets constant attention to rank organically.
Various listing formats exist, but these are the foundational elements of GOOGLE’S SERP—keep them at the forefront of your mind as you build your SEO strategy.