This may not seem very exciting at first, but it will have a serious impact from an online reputation management perspective. Google is now displaying 8 to 12 sitelinks for websites that have this information registered in webmaster tools.
According to Google, “Until now, each site had a fixed list of sitelinks that would either all appear or not appear; there was no query-specific ranking of the links. With today’s launch, sitelink selection and ranking can change from query to query, allowing more optimized results. In addition, the maximum number of sitelinks that can appear for a site has been raised from eight to 12, and the number shown also varies by query.”
So what does this mean? Well, now if you Google SEO Inc., this is what you see.
With this massive change to the formatting and number of sitelinks displayed in a search result, companies will be much more likely to take the time to modify the sitelinks in webmaster tools. In addition, we are now seeing other results ranking for branded queries show up much further down the page. This update has made sitelinks critical, companies everywhere should be putting much more focus in this area, especially if they have significant branded traffic.