Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Local Search Title-Line Revisited

A few days ago I blogged that the title-line in local search can be manipulated for marketing purposes.

After blogging about that a couple of my colleagues expressed concern that it wasn’t a good idea and one of them pointed me to the following discussion between Google Map Guide Joel and a person asking a question related to the title-line of local search:

This is an interesting case of spam - I'm glad you both posted here.

I've linked the quality guidelines below. Those listings that don't follow these guidelines are subject to removal. I wanted to highlight two points:
1. "Represent your business exactly as it appears in real life. The name on Google Maps should match the business name, as should the address, phone number and website."

Interestingly, the title LV Photo Party Las Vegas Photo Booth Rental, in my view, is committing what we call title spam or keyword stuffing. The business name doesn't match the name provided on the website.

Quoting from the guidelines again:

2. "Google Maps is intended to be a source of information for users and business owners alike."

The ShutterBox Photo Booth listings appear to have their business appropriately named. It is strange, however, that the address information isn't on the website. The addresses on listings should be useful to customers. If I were a customer, I'd expect to be able to drive up and get service from ShutterBox Photo Booth in both the locations in Las Vegas as well as the locations in Chicago.

Each of you have an opportunity to clean up the listings as necessary. I'll check back on these listings in a few days. Please make sure they follow our lisitng guidelines.


I no longer recommend local search title-line marketing.

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