Dear SEOs: Please stop spamming Google Maps!
Columnist Joy Hawkins gives a lesson in what NOT to do when optimizing Google My Business profiles, based on her experiences cleaning up spammy listings.
I used to think that locksmithing was the industry with the highest percentage of fake local listings on Google. I’m starting to think I was wrong.
It all started a few weeks ago, when I was talking to Dev Basu at Powered By Search. He was asking me why businesses in Mississauga were showing up in the 3-pack when you did a search for “Toronto SEO.”
After all, there are tons of great, well-known SEO companies in Toronto (including his and the one I work for), and shouldn’t these have priority over ones that aren’t even in the same city that was searched?
Why were the results all businesses outside Toronto?
When I started to investigate, I found that Google was pulling listings from Mississauga because of all the fake listings that SEO companies had created. These fake listings had their business name set up with a bunch of keywords as the title. Yes, unfortunately, this strategy works.
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