Sunday, 19 December 2010

Places Entry Management

Now you have entered your first page then its time to take stock before we enthusiastically rush off.

google are now enforcing the one unique phone number per listing. Simple if your business is like a local coffee shop, googles noddy business model. (Oh soory its all about Locations, I do not know of a Location with doosh) If you are a family with individual businesses, multi-business entrepreneur, or a multi-business location then you need to consider what you are doing.

google still greedily scrape every scrap of information they can find off the Web and then try to merge it all together in Maps listings. This merging is to give the searchers a 'quality experience', however googles algorithms are not that good.

Web listings you set up 'a priori' are there ready to be scraped by google. Do they satisfy these criteria in being identical to what you have typed in so far and appear to be 'unique':

Business Name/Title is your Legal/Trading Name:
Is this name unique at your location or in your vicinity as far as you can make it?
Having your family name on different listings will likely trigger a 'Search merge'.
Are there nearby businesses with the same non category words in their Title or even address? I have seen an address including 'Lodge' generate a 'Holiday Apartment' category. (google are not good at proper IT) A good reason not to put locations in a business name, to minimise 'Search merge'.

Address is in googles format and any Maps red Pin is the same position as googles.
If there are Web listings with separate Pins you are likely to get pesky duplicates created.
If there are several businesses, each with its own Phone no, at the location add a Suite No, Unit No or ABC House at the start of address line 2.

To reduce duplicate problems only put one Phone No in your listing.

The 'Legal Bit': This advice is built on sand.

Friday, 17 December 2010

Phone Number

Its quiet simple you should just have the primary phone number which is a real phone and unique across your account.

Thursday, 16 December 2010

Places Addresses

For Ellie K:

google are now policing one phone number per entry in an account.

Each account for a user with several income streams or a multiple-occupancy location will have the same mail address.

It is accepted practice to put a unique qualifier at the start of address line 2 such as 'Suite 123, ', 'Unit 321, ' or 'Gandalf House, '. It is probably a good idea to register that at the post office if possible.

google are also tightening up on address format, or your old listing was set up before a Mapping source change: Google Maps switched base map data from TeleAtlas on April 28th, 2010. You also need to ensure the Maps red Pin position in your Places entry is in the same position as your other Web content as far as possible. If they differ google may create a pesky duplicate(s) Maps listing for you otherwise. I am using a free web site where it will only position at the post code 'centre' OWHY so when its picked up in Maps I may have a problem.

If you have a suburb or main road you can put in an empty address line 2 then try it contingent on google still positioning the Pin correctly. Not all suburb names appear on Maps so checkout yours first and maybe choose the nearest most applicable if need be.

Cheers. Andrew.

Thursday, 4 February 2010

Google Maps Business Name basics


Before you put finger to keyboard on, or shout at, your web enabled device you need to think carfully about your proposed business name.

google have designed Maps and the underlying Local Busines Centre (LBC) entry to be a simple entry to your small or local branch business.

Their business model is the local coffee shop and the interface of choice a Web enabled camera phone.

Do you run more than one small business at your address? Is your business located in a shared office or business park?

Every entry you make needs to be as unique as possible to forestall many painful problems.

An ideal business name is 'Einstein Cleaners in Boston'. You can use 'near' in place of 'in' as they both parse to 'near'.

1. If your name contains a unique non-category related word you are less likely to be merged by a google algorithm with another business, either your own or one nearby who may be a competitor. google seems to use the initial part of a field for determining uniqueness. Do not use your family name or business type such as 'accountancy' if you want to keep your entry as you want it.

2. Clearly state the category your business is trading in. If you do not then you are not going to place well in searches for your category. If you have multiple skills or clearly different business areas then create a separate Maps or LBC entry for them.

3. Maps and the LBC are a local listing so work off your post/zip code but there is no harm to state the location you aim to work in. You may live or have business premises in a suburb but supply or provide a service to the whole of your local town or conurbation.

More about addresses to come.

Cheers. Andrew.