More threads by Linda Buquet

Well it tells us a little.

First, you weren't taken down in Map Maker. This is a Places takedown.

Second, that Map Maker entry links up to Google Maps. That's probably the page URL you already had, but there was always the possibility that there was a new Places page.

I do see some problems with the listing, though I don't know if any are the cause of the takedown.


Pop-A-Lock - That's probably the biggest issue; using the company name as a category.

Emergency Roadside Assistance Service - This is one that any map editor will likely delete. That category indicates more of a AAA or tow truck type of service rather than a locksmith service. If people are locked out, they will look up a locksmith. If their engine won't start or they blew a tire and don't have a spare; they'll look up Road Side Assistance, and having locksmiths come up in the results will be a bad search experience, which of course is a no-no in Google's eyes.


3015S Shore Dr.
Bay View

I'm going to assume you hid the address in the dashboard, since Street View just shows a house. But hidden or not, why is it different than the one on the company website?
Agree with Pop-a-Lock category being a potential problem.

Emergency Roadside Assistance Service - I agree in some respect but certainly no reason to delete an entire listing, it can apply, but I agree it's not the first thing someone thinks of when their car breaks down. And they do offer that type of service.

Yes, address is hidden. Address is different on the website because that's the UPS address that contributed to the listing being taken down in the first place. Business owner has not updated their website, or rather I haven't made the suggestion to do so.

Thanks Flash. I appreciate the keen eye and useful observations.
Ugh. This listing is a disaster.

---------- Post Merged at 12:21 AM ---------- Previous Post was at 12:07 AM ----------

Gregg > How are you able to tell that it was specifically a Places takedown?
Because I'd be able to see any take down via Map Maker or Ground Truth in the history. Places takedowns don't show in the history.


"We do not support this location" + no MM history = Places takedown


Deletion visible in MM history mean deletions in MM or Ground Truth; and will result in ""We do not support this location". I'd also normally then have the ability to un-delete it.
Flash, I'm curious, from a maps perspective is Pop-A-Lock a bad category because it's:

  • the business name
  • because it doesn't meet "is not does"
  • both
Flash, I'm curious, from a maps perspective is Pop-A-Lock a bad category because it's:

  • the business name
  • because it doesn't meet "is not does"
  • both
Both and it is a Locksmith which puts it on Google's naughty list. First question I'd ask is why is it there in the first place where a typical word would be used aka locksmith. "Pop-A-Lock" is esentially category spam. It doesn't add anything locksmith wouldn't cover. It would be similar to a plumber having a category of "snake-a-drain."

I'd have to say if I saw a locksmith with those categories on GMM with a UPS address on the website I'd be tempted to delete it too or Report it to Places. Plenty of people look for locksmith spam and/or care about it.
Flash, I'm curious, from a maps perspective is Pop-A-Lock a bad category because it's:

  • the business name
  • because it doesn't meet "is not does"
  • both

Very definitely all of the above. Didn't see the business name in the cats before but that's very much a guideline violation and would appear as major spam to the algo, Google or mappers I would think.
What if the business is part of a brand. Let's say Joe Blow is an insurance agency owner with "State Farm"

Would "State Farm Agent" be seen as a spammy category?
I think brands are iffy AND I don't think Google wants them in cats.

I think what Google wants is clear business categories like you would find in the yellow pages.

PLUS I doubt many folks search for State Farm agent. They are going to search for general terms like Insurance agent or life insurance.

PLUS if State Farm is in the name, they are already going to rank for that anyway.

AND if it's in the name, even if brands were allowed I don't think she'd want it repeated in cats.

There is one exception I've made to brands in cats. Invisalign is a brand. BUT it's also a service/procedure. It also gets a lot of searches and is something Dentists want to rank for if they offer that service. So I have used it and turn it from a does not is by listing it as Invisalign Provider or Invisalign Dentist. I guess Botox would be similar. Both a brand and I highly sought after service. But again you'd need to make it an is not does.
Would "State Farm Agent" be seen as a spammy category?

Yes. You are confusing categories with keywords, which many people do. Categories are inherited from the map, and are what are used to distinguish features from each other. The map is just lines and points, and then each line and point has categories to describe the feature from a maps point of view. So for a point, is it a Restaurant, Dentist, Grocery Store, Mountain Pass, City, Statue, etc. And then for lines, is it a road, river, trail, railroad, etc. (Some points can have optional boundaries attached, but that's not important).

Places then allows you to claim those points that fall in the business category. The still remain points on the map and are just a sub-set of the features on the map. The categories are what are used on the map to say "This is different from the rest of the points in that it represents..." And then you need to fill in things you would see on a detailed map, such as a restaurant or Locksmith. Further distinguishing the Locksmiths from each other is done through the business information, such as NAP, URL, etc. The categories is not where you distinguish them from each other, it is just where you get them classified as to the type of point.

The Map Maker guidelines state that if you have to resort to custom categories, it should not contain names or descriptions.

Also, the Places guidelines state you are not to put in what you sell, and give the brand of Sony products as an example. For both your examples Pop-a-Lock or State Farm is the single brand that they sell; but it is still a brand that they are selling and not allowed by the guidelines.

Now I know this presents an issue, as State Farm really shouldn't be in the title if it is for an individual agent, and so perhaps you were seeking a way to stop that. Right now it is the description field only that allows you to mention the brand of State Farm. Since Local has become all about organic, I would think that you wouldn't even need it there; that if someone searched for a State Farm agent it should still bring up the proper results do to their organic results. But if I have a chance, I'll see if I can bring it up with anyone; they do currently have car brands in the standard categories, making them an exception. However, I would think they wouldn't want to and even more exceptions, as it makes it hard to not expect everyone else to put their brands in if they see brands in the standard categories.

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