More threads by JoshuaMackens


Local Search Expert
Sep 12, 2012
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So, last week we dropped out of the local results. After doing some research I am completely stumped. We were in blended 7 packs for our main keywords and also in the 3 pure local packs. Now, we're gone.

What's even stranger is that the blended 7 packs, they are now 6 packs. It's like they decided to hide our listing. Or, they removed us and decided not to put anyone else in there. I know neither one of those are viable explanations so I honestly have no idea what's going on.

Here's a link to the serp which is now showing a 6 pack instead of a 7 pack

All variations of the keyword seem to all produce 6 packs.

Our website is still in the top 1-2 for organic but our local listing has completely disappeared.

Any ideas?
Hi Joshua,

Which listing is it so I can take a look and see if I can spot anything.
I have a list of things I look for that can drop you out of the pack.
Also need to know the specific KW unless its one of the Chiros in the link above.
Also, using Places Scout I can see that our Google Places ranking hasn't dropped at all.

Weird, right?

---------- Post Merged at 02:45 PM ---------- Previous Post was at 02:38 PM ----------

Also, I tried to poke it to get it to update, no go.

Then, I noticed we didn't have a merged Google+ Local page. I couldn't remember if we did before (I thought we had but maybe not) so I thought maybe it had disconnected itself but I have never heard of anything like that happening. Anyways, I went ahead and merged to see if I could jog it. Nothing.

I'll put publisher on there next.

We also have quite a few Google+ pages apparently. 4 to be precise. 1 correct one which is the merged Google+ local page and then 3 others. One I was able to delete. Another I can't because Google made it from our YouTube page (so annoying) and now it won't let me delete the association. The last was made by one of the doctors.

I haven't heard of duplicate Google+ pages being an issue, but you never know I guess. We don't have any Google+ Local (GP, GP for Business) duplicates that I'm aware of though. I checked.
Anyways, I went ahead and merged to see if I could jog it. Nothing.

Hey Joshua, should not be merging right now plus I don't think that would jog anything.

Thanks for sharing the listing with me via PM. Sharing my feedback publicly. If I helped you privately it would be a consult, and this way it's free and others can maybe learn from it. But I'll keep your client details private.

I think it's possible you are penalized. The potential problems I see are city in the name, which some in that chain include city but many do not so I'd find out if that's the official name.

Additionally that description I think could trip a filter. I've seen listings just like this drop out of the pack or the carousel. They rank tops in organic and maps, they just won't blend to list in the pack.

The description has city repeated 4 times, main KW repeated 5 times plus name and phone each repeated once.

Sometimes when I point this out and the description is cleaned up the listing pops right up. Unfortunately in some cases it's like the penalty lingers for months and they can't rank in blended.

So anyway that's all I can think of that could be a problem.
I don't mind you sharing feedback publicly.

I'll make the changes you suggested and we'll see what happens.

The company is question is a client of mine and yes, that is their legal name. They are part of a franchise and therefore, use locations to identify them apart from the parent company.

Can you explain the pack moving from a 7 pack to 6 though? I think it's strange it went to 6 at the same time we were left out.

Also, this has been our listing set up for some time (descriptions, etc). If it is one of those things, why now?
Well I'll be the Dhali Llama with a sideways 'Bama hat.

Made the changes (plus removing some categories), and within 15 minutes, voila. Can't believe it.

Back to the 7 pack too. It's like it was hiding us until we fixed it.
Whew Joshua, glad you were one of the lucky ones.

I've had folks make those changes and immediately pop back in, so I'm glad that worked for you.

But then there is one I helped here in the forum that had more serious repetition issues who is still penalized months later. Ranks #1 organic and high in maps, just won't blend to get in the carousel. Take a peek at how the restaurant description was worded. Organically doing well, Google + Local is a ?

Thanks Blake. Yes I agree Google is not using description for ranking benefit BUT as Mike said descriptions are "prone to spam" and I believe they still can ding for it.

Mike agrees with me and recently in his blog comments said city repeated in description can cause a 10 point ranking penalty.

One of the main principles I teach in my advanced course is how to learn to think like Google. Give her more of what she likes and avoid things she hates. Google hates spammers. Spammers use heavy name/keyword/city repetition. :eek:

"Looking for an Atlanta Plumber? Joes Plumbing is the best plumber in Atlanta, call Joe's Plumbing for all your Atlanta plumbing needs." DING! :eek:
FYI Joel Headley also wrote this:

"Think of adding an "elevator pitch " for your business. If you follow that principle, I think the questions are mostly answered. We don't map out our "lines" else someone figures out how go under them.

Regarding penalties, think of it more as a single to your ranking instead of an explicit penalty. Everything that's added to the listing that would be useful for a user can improve the ranking while other things that would confuse a user or try to dupe them lowers the ranking."

Here is my thread with link to that comment and the advice I've given for a long time:
Description Best Practices in the NEW Google Places Dashboard
Well, we dropped out again somehow.

Didn't change a thing from last night.

Any ideas?
So I popped it once and it came back within 5 minutes. We'll see if it leaves again.

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