As Local Search Specialists have undoubtedly noticed, Google has removed the function to change your Google Search results by location. This is a blow for SEOers and webmasters who want to see and test SERP results based on different locales.
Geo-specific search results are especially important for national businesses and franchises that operate in multiple geo locations.
The reason from Google for removing the location search filter was simply:
“It was getting very little usage, so we’re focusing on other features.”
Luckily, local SEO experts have come up with numerous workarounds for the removed feature, and here are my top 3 solutions (in no particular order):
This nifty site lets users put in a country, language, and even select a mobile device before entering your search phrase, along with more indepth options for those that really want to get specific SERP results:
2. THE “&NEAR=” PARAMETER
The “&near=” parameter involves manually adding &near=location to your search URL. Please note that this method may eventually be patched or removed by Google:
3. ADWORDS AD PREVIEW TOOL
Yes, you read correctly – of course a viable solution to a natural/organic search problem is found within Google Adwords. This seems to be a familiar trend. The Google Ad Preview and Diagnosis Tool is usually used to determine whether or not your ad is currently being shown. However, you can take advantage of this tool to see the SERPs for a particular location – you can even change the language and device category: