How Bad Location Data is Eating Away Your Business
The fight for customers goes beyond just visibility in search. When a customer finds your business online, they expect the NAP and any enhanced information such as your office hours, menu, etc to be accurate. When wrong information affects a customer’s purchasing process, it in turn makes them mistrust the brand and avoid future purchases from them. So what do you need to know to make sure you don’t lose potential customers?
How do You get Bad Location Data?
Any kind of inconsistencies in your business name, address and phone number (NAP) can cause major damage to your online visibility. If you have strong competition, this can really affect how you get ranked by any search engine.
Usually when a business changes its store location or phone number, it wreaks havoc on its NAP information across the web. Search engines use so many sources of information to list businesses, it can result in a lot of wrong data remaining unchanged even after your move. Bad location data can also be due to the presence of duplicates across directories, inaccurate or missing listings, missing web URL, and so on.
How does this Affect Your Business?
Search engines count on consistency in a business’ information across the web as an indicator of its quality when they provide search results to users. Inconsistencies in your listings can make it more difficult to get ranked in SERPs. If your business information is different on different sites, a search engine won’t think you’re a business worth ranking because they don’t know what information to trust, let alone display.
With Google reducing local snack pack, it is even harder for businesses to get the top spot on SERPs. It’s important to make sure that you find and get rid of duplicates and simultaneously, optimize your existing listings to get your business a better ranking.
Most people tend to search for a business at home to confirm it’s location before they head out. With mobile search growing each year, managing your location data is becoming an essential part of doing business.
When customers find incorrect listings of a brand or get lost due to bad directions (caused by incorrect NAP data), they lose trust in that brand. If you want to improve your walk-ins and make sure that customers seeking out your store, find you, your business listings must be accurate and consistent across the web.
Another common reason people look up businesses online, is to make sure they don’t end up at a store when it’s closed. If your store hours on Google My Business, Yelp or any other directory are wrong, chances are you’ll lose customers purely due to bad timing.
What Can You Do?
The first step to getting rid of NAP inconsistencies is to identify where you have bad location data. You can manually claim each and manage your business listings or you can use tools like LOCAL FINDS to find out where your business is listed incorrectly and fix them accordingly. You can also discover where your business might have duplicates and get rid of them too.
The more accurate and consistent your listings are online, the better your rankings will be in the SERPs and the easier it is for your customers to find you. Ultimately, that’s what brings them to your door. The rest, is up to you.