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Google Possum Update: WTF is it? | Andre Buxey

Google Possum Update: WTF is it?

The Google released an algorithm update late last year in the beginning of September 2016. Apparently, the update is one of the biggest ones (ok….?) which now looks at the local listings and rankings as Google moves to provide local search results to its users. Search Engine Land reported that “Google’s Possum update changed 64% of local SERPs”.


The significant changes:

  1. Businesses that are not physically based within a city can now rank for keywords that include that particular city’s name.
  2. Multiple listings of the same business are now being collated into one. Google’s filters take into consideration the company address and the category of business the company falls into.
  3. The location of the ‘searcher’ is playing a much more significant role than before. Essentially, the further away a searcher is from the city the more zoomed out the results will be on the map.
  4. Search results in the local pack are more prominent when using keyword variations.
  5. Possum made the local filter more independent from the organic filter.


How to boost your rankings?

  • Make sure you have your business’s name, address and phone number matching exactly on your Google My Business page and your local landing pages.
  • Chase local reviews and build local links and citations