2023 will be a run-up to the Olympics for the world’s top athletes who will be competing in a variety of events to prove themselves ready to represent their countries in the Paris Games, and I have a strong hunch that the coming months will be a strenuous exercise in fortitude for local business owners and their marketers, as well.

Having weathered the extraordinary events that occurred in local search in the second half of 2022 – most particularly the deprecation of the historic Google Business Profile Manager Dashboard and a slew of business-impacting bugs – it’s my prediction that 2023 is going to be a year of notable change for the millions of local brands for whom Google’s local search interfaces have become integral to discovery, communications, and sales. Meanwhile, ChatGPT is stirring up the whole SEO industry, with many wondering how long a shadow AI will cast over work and life.

It’s my gut feeling that the developments we’ve seen over the past few months presage greater change ahead driven by Google’s attitude toward and handling of local and general search philosophy. Let’s prepare ourselves by getting an outlook on organic SEO (which bounds our local world) from Moz’s own Tom Capper and Dr. Peter J. Meyers. Then, let’s gather local wisdom from thoughtful industry commentators including Amanda Jordan, Ben Fisher, David Mihm, Garrett Sussman, Greg Sterling, and Mike Blumenthal. Finally, I’ll offer 3 areas of local search marketing I recommend focusing on in 2023.

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The author's views are entirely his or her own (excluding the unlikely event of hypnosis) and may not always reflect the views of Moz.