Does Listing Management Still Matter?

Mar 28, 2022

We’ve discussed the importance of business listings beyond a Google Business Profile (GBP) quite a bit, and there’s a good reason for that.

There was a recent (2021) Local Search Ranking Factors study that estimated how much weight Google placed on the important ranking factors. With citations making up 7% and a business’ GBP taking 36% of Google’s prioritization, you could be thinking that listing management is on the decline. But here at Business Boosters we disagree – strongly. And yes, we have supporting proof.

We’ve discussed time and again about consumers’ trust of business listings, and today we have a real-world example to share with you on just how much Google itself trusts these listings.

Bad Data Is Impacting This Business in Google Maps and the Local Pack

One local business was experiencing ongoing frustration with a Google Business Profile after they moved locations in April 2021. After completing an address change with Google including the postcard verification, everything appeared to be on track.

Unfortunately, within days of verifying the business’ new address, Google changed the business’ address back to the old location. The business contacted Google support, who instructed them to first accept the changes for the business in the Google Business Profile. Step two would be to change the old location address to the new one again, then repeat the postcard verification process for the new address.

With no alternative in sight the business completed these steps. The postcard verification went through once more, and the address in the Google Business Profile was then correct for approximately the past nine months.

Well, hold on. Last week, Google changed the business address back to the old one. And yes, the business’ website most definitely has the correct address, so just what triggered Google to determine this was not the correct address for the business?

Our research revealed that the partner did not have the listing management active for this business in our solution – the business had opted not to renew the service. The last time the business had active listing management was for the old address.

What Was Happening With This Business’ Google Business Profile?

  1. Google would accept the postcard verification and change the address to the business’ new location.
  2. Google algorithms would then detect that the business’ address in fact differed from other trusted data sources.
  3. Google automatically changed the business’ address back to the old address.

Both Yelp and Bing, in addition to numerous other directories and data sources, showed this business at their old address. Changing the address with Google might have seemed a logical approach, but it was leaving this business with conflicting data online.

So how do you resolve this? To begin, the business needs their NAP data to be accurate on the most important directories, data aggregators, plus Bing and Yelp. And while it is possible to update many of these directories manually, it’s time-consuming in the extreme.

Just how important is listing management for a business? Back to our example, bad data was impacting this business’ visibility in the local pack and Google Maps. This agency partner is solving this business’ Google Business Profile problem by fixing their bad data online in other trusted sources.