Citation Inconsistency Is No.1 Issue Affecting Local Ranking

By Myles Anderson


This post is a follow-up from my November post, in which I shared some interesting findings from the current InsideLocal webinar series.

During InsideLocal webinars, we survey the audience, which consists of 500+ local search consultants and SMB owners. The vast majority of attendees are search consultants/agencies, with 90-95% located in USA and Canada (so the data are skewed to that sector’s experience and location).

The results of these polls help to illuminate the scale of specific issues impacting local businesses and the local search community.

Q1. What Are The Most Common Local Ranking Issues That Local Businesses Have?

What are the most common local ranking issues that local businesses have?

Respondents: 336

We gave attendees 5 options to choose from and asked them to pick the 2 most common issues that they find across all the clients they work with or businesses they audit. Given that each local search consultant handles 9 clients on average, we can assume that these experiences are drawn from in excess of 3,000 businesses.

Key Findings:

  • Inconsistent citation and NAP (Name, Address, Phone) data is by far the most common issue at 41%.
  • Duplicate Google Places/+Local listings is the 2nd most common issue at 27%.
  • Google Places Guideline Violations is the least common issue, with just 4% of respondents counting this among their most common issues.


We all know how the local search space is plagued with incorrect business data, so it’s not surprising to see Citations/NAP as the number one issue affecting local businesses. The majority of businesses have NAP consistency issues on some level, ranging from cripplingly bad to very minor, and this issue will remain a thorn in our side for some years to come.

I was surprised to see that “Google Places Guideline …read more

Source:: SearchEngineLand


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