Why Local Listing Accuracy is Important

By Sarah Giometti | Analytics

Sep 21

You started a business at 123 First Cir., got your business cards done, you’re networking, you have a website, you have signs up so people can find you. You’ve opened up the doors and you’re waiting for the crowds to flood in and buy some widgets from you. As time goes on, you notice that you’re not getting the foot traffic through the door that you were hoping for and you can’t figure out why. People say they like your widgets, they’re telling their friends about you, and all of the feedback you’re getting is good, but business still isn’t picking up the way you’d like.

Meanwhile, on the other side of town. At 321 Firth Ct., another entrepreneur has opened up a business selling twidgets. That poor lady is now experiencing the same syndrome as you are. Both of you are getting great feedback from the customers that do show up, but not enough people coming through the door.

Then it hits you both. You both go to Google and type in your business names and neither of them are showing up on the first page. So why is that?

The good thing about Google is that it is always striving for accuracy. We always want the right information when we ask Google to find something for us. The bad thing about Google is that it is always striving for accuracy. Google is so concerned that we get the correct information that it is constantly crawling the internet for information and trying to evaluate which is the most relevant and accurate information.

When you opened your doors for your business, Google found that information and said, ok, is there any more information out there that is just like this? And it starts searching. And Google is REALLY good at searching. The more consistently accurate information that Google finds, the higher priority it gives that information when somebody searches for it. Because it is accurate, Google will discern the differences between First Street and Firth Street. Did you notice it? That’s right, a typo, or a Cir. instead of a Ct. can be enough for Google to say that the information is different and therefore not consistent. The more often Google finds information that is not consistent it is likely it will degrade that information!

Here’s where it gets even worse. If Google ONLY looked for the information that you told Google about then you’d probably be in good shape because you would never tell Google that you sold twidgets when you really sold widgets. But that’s not how it works. Google isn’t the only one that is searching and displaying information about your business; hundreds of other sites are also listing your information, all across the internet in all of it’s deep dark little places.

So if Google looks at everything on the internet in its quest for accuracy and relevance, how many different versions of your business information do you think are out there? In this instance we made up another business with a similar name, but what if you have listed an Inc. on one listing directory and Incorporated on another one? Google says they’re different!

Finding all of those deep dark corners of the internet and getting all of those sources to carry the same information is a daunting task, but it can be done. Keeping on top of this stuff is not easy. There are multiple apps out there that can help.Something like Provaro Marketing’s local SEO platform manages all of these unknown, dark corner listings easily in a single dashboard. That’s a good alternative to hiring a professional. In many cases, however, business owners are far better off hiring a professional to track down this information and keep it all up to date. You might want to hire a pro mostly because you’ve got twidgets to sell, uh, I mean widgets.

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