And that's not a good thing for most local businesses.
I haven't seen it here yet but it is coming.
Google is turning the local three-pack into a local two-pack as they will be including a paid ad result in the future. The local three-pack is the three local results that are returned at the top of the page for a searcher through Google, shown below. They have a massive advantage over the rest of the results.
They haven't started including them in our area yet but it's only a matter of time. Below is an example of what you'll see, with a company that uses Google AdWords being given the top spot in the local pack as well.
They used to only rank up top with the rest of the ads, no more. Locally, this hasn't happened yet. I am seeing ad ranks in the expanded local packs, shown below.
But the original search gave back these results. And since Buczolich Family Dentistry is a client of ours, I can assure you that they don't use AdWords, nor is the Green AD label attached to their listing.
What does this mean for you? The toughest aspect of your advertising just became tougher. It'll be more difficult than ever to stand out but those that do will have that much bigger of an advantage. I'd get to work now on your Google presence and as always, we offer free consultations if you would like us to look over it.