Den

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Hello!

I read up on this on sterlingsky.ca

Here's a snippet:
  • Does the business name on the listing match what’s on their sign in Street View?
  • Does the business name on the listing match what is listed on their business license? You can look at how a business is registered by searching for them on their state’s Secretary of State website.
  • Call the phone number. How do they answer the phone? When you’re making these calls, call from Gmail so that your number is anonymous and they can’t call you back. Many spammers who create tons of fake listings answer their phone with something generic like “Hello, locksmith” or “Hello, service”. Normal businesses generally answer with their business name. If they answer as just “hello” you can always ask “Hi, I’m trying to make sure I got the right number, what business is this?”
  • Other government documents can be used to verify a business name
  • What name is listed on their website? Often these people will list their name as “keyword 1, 2, 3” on Google yet their About us page on their website lists their real name.

My question:

Is it enough to cover one of these points to not go against the rules of Keyword Stuffing?

I have seen a lot of businesses where their GMB page has their name+location keyword and if you check their business license, they are actually licensed the same way (name+location keyword)
- However anywhere else you look, storefront sign, the way they answer the phone, website name etc, they are just using their name without the location keyword.

Is this 100% fine?

Maybe that is the only way this is fine, by having it licensed with the keyword and any other way of doing it would not be fine?

Such as just having a storefront sign with name+location keyword but everywhere else it´s just their name including on their business license. Or maybe this is fine as well?
 

Margaret Ornsby

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There's the theory (yes it's against the guidelines) and there's the reality.

The reality of using locations on business names is it's common and a very, very, very low priority for Google. You're welcome to make edits if you think the listing is genuinely spamming, but the business can also argue the location in the name is helpful and legit.

Honestly it's a grey area. Google is inconsistent with enforcing this, to the point it's something I often don't bother with when cleaning up spam unless I can see it can make a difference. This sort of edit is often the kind of thing you'll be chasing your tail on too - you fix it, they put it back, you fix it, they put it back...
 

BenFisher

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I will add however, that Google, when made aware of a violation, will look a majority of these things. If signage does not match = suspension, do not answer the phone the right way = suspension. Does not match the website = suspension.

So, report violators. Provide proof.
 

JoyHawkins

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I have seen a lot of businesses where their GMB page has their name+location keyword and if you check their business license, they are actually licensed the same way (name+location keyword)
- However anywhere else you look, storefront sign, the way they answer the phone, website name etc, they are just using their name without the location keyword.

Is this 100% fine?

I'd say it varies. I've seen lots of cases where the website says one thing but the sign says another and Google was still fine with it likely because they think the business rebranded and just hasn't had time to update their signs. As long as a few of them match, they don't all have to match.

You can still try to report it and see what Google does. They're not overly consistent.
 
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