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Posts Tagged ‘Local search’

I’m not losing sleep over Google+ Local’s missing custom categories

Mike Blumenthal recently drew attention to the lack of category choices we’re all going to have to get used to in the new Google+ Local dashboard. Previously, we’d be able to create an additional 4 custom categories to describe our business services more accurately besides the one that Google provides. And we did so in hopes of giving us a better chance of showing up for those keywords.

This lack of choice has gotten a lot of Local SEO’s up in arms because as Mike points out:

“Categories are a critical piece of how Google determines the relevance (not rank) of a listing in local search and there are so few categories that the consumer search results will likely not show businesses that should be shown.”

Who am I to argue with “Professor Maps” as the Local SEO world affectionately calls him (and he deserves that distinction), but this just doesn’t make sense to me. I must be missing something. Isn’t that like saying Google doesn’t know what a web page is relevant for without the meta keywords tag it deprecated so long ago? If we rely on custom-made categories to group businesses into buckets, then aren’t we turning over the wheel to reckless drivers? 

No need to fake address in Google Places. Just move instead.

Being close to city center isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Or is it?

Recently, I set up a client in Google Places and he quickly rose to the first page. But the other day he suddenly disappeared as did several others. Clearly Google had changed its algorithm because I had done nothing to the listing or his website. On top of that, for some reason Google decided that only three Google Place results (the ones with the little red pin) deserved to be on the first page.

Why, I wondered, would Google only show 3 when there is room for 10?

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