Google recently revealed it had updated the way it labeled country services on desktop Maps and Search, Mobile web and the Google app for iOS.
We have recently updated the way we label country services on desktop Maps and Search, Mobile web and the Google app for iOS. Now the users will be served the country service that corresponds to their locations, instead of serving the country service indicated by their domains. For example, if you live in India, you will automatically receive the country service for India, but when you travel to Australia, your results will be switch automatically to the country service for Australia. When returning to India again, you will revert back to Indian country service.
People were also facing some inconvenience after this change when they were trying to check international results.
Google stated that “This change will help ensure that users get the most relevant results based on their locations. “
This update of Google also had a huge impact for websites operating in multiple markets. Before this update, if the web pages were near-duplicate or duplicate, they would be folded together in Google’s index, and only one version from the folded web pages would show as it was selected as the canonical version. Often that version would be the wrong language or country version of a page that was shown to users.
Let’s take an example if your web pages were the same in the India and US, people searching in the US might see the Indian version of the page. After this update, Google is trying to serve the best version from the folded webpages, by picking the version that best matches the respecting hreflang tag.
Conclusion: This update of Google will help users to get the most relevant results based on their location. But obviously Google still has some work to do when searching for individual versions, but the update has solved a lot of headache for SEOs.