Google My Business Guidelines

If you track the rank of your business for Google local searches, you are well aware that the local search landscape has changed greatly over the past few months. The changes manifested in the Google Pigeon update are well known, but there are some adjustments you need to make to your listing that are not as well known.

1. Choose the fewest number of categories it takes to describe your overall core business.

It used to be ok, and recommended, to list all categories that applied to your business. Now that will hurt your ranking. Listing just the basic categories will help you compete in those core categories. Check your categories and make sure they have been updated for the new algorithm.

2. Business Name - Adding unnecessary information to your name ... is not permitted.

You used to be able to get away with adding keywords to your business name, and it actually helped. It can now hurt. Again, stick to the basics. Just use the name on your letterhead, and make sure it is consistent across the web.

3. Business Address - Use a precise, accurate address to describe your business location.

PO Boxes or mailboxes located at remote locations are not acceptable. That means UPS Stores or virtual offices like Regus. It used to be ok, but now it is explicitly against the rules, and if Google finds out, you will be penalized.

For more information on how properly set up your listing and optimize it to rank well, check out the Google My Business Guidelines.

TP Designs promotes websites in the San Francisco Bay Area through PPC and SEO services.

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