Linda Buquet

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Darren just wrote a great post!

"Dear Google, Stop Using Business Name as a Local Ranking Factor"

I'll second that. Could not agree more. It's so unfair!

<a href="http://www.whitespark.ca/blog/post/54-dear-google-stop-using-business-name-as-a-local-ranking-factor">Dear Google, Stop Using Business Name as a Local Ranking Factor</a>

Google, Here's a Quick Fix

Hey Google, I have a suggestion. Rather than bother with all this descriptor stripping, just stop using the business name in the local ranking algorithm. It’s a stupid factor to consider anyway. Just because a business happens to have keywords in their business name doesn’t mean they’re a better business to rank for the term.

If you stopped using the business name, you’d eliminate the problem of people spamming this field, and you’d get better results because REAL businesses that have non-keyword stuffed names would be able to surface into the local pack.

Come on. Just do it. Please?

I could not agree more!

I left a comment but it's not showing and didn't give me feedback as far as being accepted or waiting in moderation, so in case it didn't stick, here it is...

Totally agree Darren!

Your examples just mainly had the word Plumbing in them, which many plumbing companies have.

Check a bunch of large metro competitive keywords and often the top 3 are all City + KW or KW + City business names and domain names.

Here a couple examples where they rank high in the 7 pack and have both city + KW:

bellevue dentist 7 out of 7
bellevue chiropractor 3 out of 7 (Last week was 5 out of 7)

That's just a couple examples. I could go on and on. And it's not fair!

Now there are lots of EMDs/PMDs that don't rank at all either. So EMD is not the magic bullet, but it sure helps.

Thanks Darren for venting your frustration so we can all join in!

What do you think?
Are you fed up too?

<meta property="og:type" content="article"><meta property="og:title" content=""><meta property="og:description" content="">
<meta property="og:image" content="http://www.whitespark.ca/uploads/Computer-rage.gif">
 

painperdu

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Is keyword the tie-breaker, so to speak? If all other SEO aspects are equal does Google break the tie with the keyword?
 
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I don't agree but that's probably because I'm not an SEO. 😆 i m all for Google smashing spam but this debate is very chicken or egg. If a business is called Washington Plummers then if you search for "Washington Plummers" it makes sense to serve up the business as one of the top features.
 
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It's quite rare that you get a company called a keyword+location. Unless its been done for SEO purposes!

So I have to agree with Darren here
 

Margaret Ornsby

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H Jonathan,

I'm seeing more and more of it, and it's a TKO as far as local packs go unless and until Google and other search engines wrap their heads around the predicament.

It's no different to the "old days" with yellowpages when plumbers and other tradies would name their business AA Plumbing, then the next guy would come along and name his AAAA Plumbing. It got to the point where I once counted 7 A's at the front of the name. And yes, it was the registered genuine business name.

So yes, I'm sure some of the time it's being done to "game" the system. Mary Bowling also made a really good case that often it's legit - don't remember where her post is - if someone can link to it I'd be grateful.

I'm certainly glad I don't have to put my grey matter to figuring out how to fix the problem; it's going to take v clever minds.

That said, it's a growing problem and I'm heartened to know I'm not the only one being frustrated by it.
 

JoshuaMackens

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I don't agree but that's probably because I'm not an SEO. 😆 i m all for Google smashing spam but this debate is very chicken or egg. If a business is called Washington Plummers then if you search for "Washington Plummers" it makes sense to serve up the business as one of the top features.

I agree that it should be a ranking factor.

However, the sensitivity dial is turned up way too high on this particular factor. In some cases (I'd like to see the example mentioned above on a car company ranking for a dentist) it's the only reason a company is ranking. Terrible/zero reviews, weak website, poor citations, doesn't matter.

But I definitely do agree it's a quality signal. Since Pigeon though, it's too much of one.
 
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