If you’re someone who uses Google as your preferred search engine, you are certainly not alone. According to many published statistics, Google continues to be the top search engine above other popular ones such as Bing and Yahoo. In fact, Google is used so frequently that it has even been used as a verb. Just about all of us have said at one time or another “I’m going to Google that.”

TechHowever, as much as we rely on it to look up everything from entertainment news to the best place to get our car washed, most individuals don’t give much thought to all of the things that the Google team is doing in order to make using the search engine better.

Take algorithms, for example. There’s a chance that you haven’t even noticed that within the past several weeks, there have been a few updates that have directly affected what you see when you type in certain local businesses.

That is, unless you are a business owner.

Thanks to an algorithm update known as “Pigeon”, the way that a lot of local businesses are listed has changed, significantly. For one thing, Google has made the decision to put more of the focus on things like keywords, the quality of website pages, and domain authority when it comes to which sites come up first. For instance, if you happen to have a hair salon, if Google deems the site to be “low quality” or if there isn’t a lot of SEO content inside of it, it may not come up when someone types “hair salons” along with your city and state in it.

A part of this is due to the fact that the number of local business listings that pop up on Google is dropping from 7-10 different businesses to 3-4 per page. Another reason is because while the business listings are decreasing, popular business directories such as Yelp, Open Table and Trip Adviser are increasing.

And still another reason is because Google is seeking to focus more on businesses that have SEO superiority. It’s a great way to bring focus to Google Authorship, another implemented program that gives authors of content on websites the opportunity to have their byline showcased on Google more often than in times past.

If you do have a local business, you might be concerned about what you can do in order to not be heavily affected by the Google update Pigeon. The good news is that there are some ways to increase your chances of being seen more easily and more often.

For one thing, it’s a good idea to develop more SEO content on your website. If you’re not sure how to go about doing that, contact a highly-recommended SEO company that can provide you with tips on how to make your content more appealing. Doing that and also adding a link-building strategy are two of the best ways to improve your optimization.

Although you might not see immediate results, changes will occur within a matter of a couple of months. And then you will notice that the algorithm Pigeon is actually working for you, not against you.