What you need to know about Google’s ‘Possum’ algorithm update

possum-google-updateSince 1 st September the community has noted significant variations in results on Google. A major upgrade took place and experts have called opossum (Possum in English).

What is the algorithm affects?

Possum is an update of the algorithm. This algorithm is independent (almost) organic results. Their findings appear in two places.

The first is the 3-pack on the web search page.

The second is the list of Local Finder that can be accessed either by clicking on “Other Address” 3-pack or by visiting Maps. Here is an example with a local search.

The local algorithm is therefore used to rank results in a relevant way to find a company nearby. 3-pack appear in the top results on and is therefore important from an perspective.


The impact of the update Possum

Possum, updating the latest local, made a lot of waves. Some companies have gone the results and others have appeared there.

It is the specialist Joy Hawkins who collected the information available on the web and analyzed the results to develop acomprehensive picture of Possum .

First, it argues that it is a quality upgrade (Quality update) to reduce spam and provide more diverse results to prevent a company from monopolizing the results.

The cards have disappeared have not necessarily been penalized. The local results are filtered according to several criteria.


Here are its key observations:

1.       Companies “close” to the city rank higher.

Your store is near Quebec City and clientele comes primarily from Quebec, but your address is not the same in Quebec. So far, it had to be difficult to be able to position themselves in the local results of Québec, if not impossible.

The update Possum However relaxed the rules when in position. Companies in this situation seem to get higher rankings.

2.       Content Filter is based on addresses and affiliations.

Just like the organic results, performs a sort of local results and filter to avoid duplicates. One of the objectives of the Possum update seems to target these duplicates.

The filter has become more accurate. More than addresses themselves, seems to recognize the unique buildings while multiple addresses attached to them.

This means that companies in the same field in the same building could be difficult to appear simultaneously in the results. One of the two companies may be filtered.

Which ?

This is usually the newer or less efficient than well to the organic level.

Besides, Joy Hawkins noted some situations where has even made the connection between companies operating in different areas, because they are affiliated to one another (same owner for example).

3.       The geographical position alter the results of the 3-pack.

The results in the three-pack depend on the place which is being searched.

If we take the example used previously and that performs the same search Trois-Rivières rather than Quebec, we get this.

Change position has become more difficult since can no longer do it manually on the results page. Here is a tool to simulate the position .

4.       Changes in and phrases influence the results.

A slight change in search terms can vary the results. Previously, slight variations do not result in changes is no longer the case.


Have you undergone significant changes in local results?  Contact us for help.

Add Comment