More threads by JoyHawkins


Local Search Expert
LocalU Faculty
Aug 23, 2014
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I wrote this article for Moz that published today and includes the top Local SEO myths that I hear most frequently. It's interesting to see so many people comment that they really thought posting on G+ helped ranking.

I thought I'd post this over here to see what other myths you hear on a regular basis?
Haha Joy, those are really good ones we hear all the time!

Except posting on G+. Didn't realize so many thought that would help ranking. :confused:

Just thought of another one we hear a lot:
Hiding your address (if you are a service area business) hurts your ranking. It doesn't.
And unless you have a staffed walk in office, you must hide address or it's a violation.
Yeah that's a good one. The only thing that makes me hesitant on that one is a couple years ago we actually did have a client who ranked nowhere when he first came to us and since he had a storefront we unhid his address and he actually popped right into the pack. It baffled me.

I haven't seen it happen again though. I think because it created a MapMaker record it almost refreshed something that was needed to get him to rank. Still can't quite wrap my head around it.
I don't care what you say Joy. I'm never going to stop posting on G+. ; )
HA! For yourself or clients? I'll never stop posting there myself but frankly I'm not trying to increase my ranking ;)
Except posting on G+. Didn't realize so many thought that would help ranking. :confused:

I imagine some think about personalized search with G+ posts showing in SERPs of people who have them in their circle, but still... :rolleyes:
To add to Joy's myths...

Here are some great ones from Local Search experts: Mike Blumenthal, Mary Bowling, Don Campbell, Greg Gifford, David Mihm, Mike Ramsey, Phil Rozek, Darren Shaw, Andrew Shotland, Adam Steele, Nyagoslav Zhekov & yours truly.

Posted at Phil's blog in 2013:
<a href="">Top Local SEO Myths |</a>

Most are still true today. "The more things change, the more they stay the same!"

So a few more from the experts in that post that I hear a lot are:

Local is easier than organic. The listing with the most reviews gets the top spot.
The city is the centroid.
Great post Joy! Interesting how often it seems to pop up that people try and delete their listing to get rid of it (usually to keep there from being a spot where people can leave bad reviews about them). For better or worse, no way to meet reputation in the online age except for head-on.

The map and organic SEO being separate is an interesting one too, I've found that potential point of (usually unspoken) confusion is a really important thing to pay attention to when talking with potential clients.
Great post Joy. New nuggets in there, which I appreciate.

Loved the one about Google employees. I think for awhile everyone was afraid to say it but I'm glad some people with Google ties are saying it now because it's so true. I hope Google will see this and start making their support better.

I can dream, right?

They have made their support better via Twitter. It's 1000% better than phone support. Just no one knows about it lol.
I've been using it but haven't necessarily been impressed so far.
Really??? That's surprising. I have only had good experiences.
At first I would tweet but now that I've sent him dozens of questions I just skip right to DM'ing.
Just wanted to add a new list of Local SEO Myths - this one's from Neil Patel over at The Search Engine Journal:

The 10 Things People Still Get Wrong About Local SEO

Many are the same as the ones Joy has already pointed out, but I thought Number 1 (Targeting Keywords for Local Search is Irrelevant) and 5 (Trackable Phone Numbers in Business Listings) were quite interesting as myths.
Wow that article is really similar. Lots of the exact same points. Weird.
Well, they're not called common misconceptions for nothing... if they're what people commonly get wrong, I suppose it's what's going to be commonly written about.

His point on call tracking though is a little bit of a weak one. It's only a problem if you're trying to introduce a new phone number into the ecosystem purely for tracking purposes. Obviously that's a terrible idea, but there are ways to get a businesses current number hooked up with a call tracking system, and there's nothing that'll hurt rankings with that.

I think his point number six about categories is also a little loose... categories can make a big impact on ranking, but it's not as simple as using less categories. Dan's article about that was a good one, and matches what I've seen in the field.
Doesn't sound like someone that understands the finer points of local. Plagiarism is a form of flattery Joy.

No way of knowing if Neil knows his local. With that said, I'll be the first to admit that I am sick and tired of hacks writing about things they don't do day in and day out. Super obvious to me when it happens. Lol. Hacks make me laugh.
Great article once again, Joy. I am still astonished at how many people don't know the relationship between local and organic search. I remember a short while where Google would show G+ posts in search but we never saw too much benefit from posting on G+. It's interesting how old these myths are and yet we still hear/read about them frequently.

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