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Tricks to Cleaning up NAP Problems in Local Search

So your business moved or has an old phone number. Everyone knows that having a consistent Name, Address, and Phone Number is a big ranking factor in Local Search.  But if your business has tons of wrong citations to clean up, it can be somewhat stressful trying to figure out which ones to tackle first.

First: Clean up the Data Providers

This probably isn’t news to anyone, but I would start first with the major data providers:

Second: Fix the Directories that are Attached to your Google Places Listing

What many people forget is that Google has given you some detailed insight into what directories they have actually connected to your business. Just because you have a citation or listing out there doesn’t mean Google knows about it or has actually connected it to your listing. However, you can target the listings you know for sure that Google has connected. How do you do that? Look at Reviews Around the Web.

  • Most listings have a “reviews around the web” section on them. Directories listed here should be fixed right away. The only negative thing is that there is only up to 3 directories listed in this section. (Although as of Sept 26th, I’m not seeing any “reviews around the web” on the About tab of Google Places Listings)
  • What many people don’t realize is you can see 4 of these directories if you search for the business by name to get the knowledge graph, or if you hover over the arrows in the search results.
  • If you have access to the Google Places listing, you can get a full list of even more directories by looking in the reviews around the web section in the dashboard. Any directories in this section with the wrong NAP would be high priority to fix.
    • Go to
    • Click “manage this page”
    • Scroll down to see the “reviews” panel and click “manage reviews”
    • The reviews on Google will show up first, but lower on the page you will see reviews around the web. Make sure you look at them all

NAP CleanupThird: Fix the Directories that are Attached to your Competitors’ Google Places Listings

Using the method above, look at the knowledge graph for each competitor that ranks for the keyword you want to be listed under. This is important because each vertical/industry has different directories that Google looks at. You want to make sure you tackle the ones that are important for your industry. Using “plumber Seattle” as an example, here are the directories that appear on the knowledge graph for each of the 7 listings ranking:

  • Judysbook
  • Kudzu
  • InsiderPages
  • DexKnows
  • Yahoo
  • MerchantCircle
  • SuperPages
  • MyReviewBoost
  • SwitchBoard
  • CitySearch
  • Abumba
  • PageGlimpse
  • ServiceMagic
  • ReviewFrog
  • CustomerLobby





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Joy Hawkins

Joy is the owner of the Local Search Forum, LocalU, and Sterling Sky, a Local SEO agency in Canada & the USA. She has been working in the industry since 2006, writes for publications such as Search Engine Land, and enjoys speaking regularly at marketing conferences such as MozCon, LocalU, Pubcon, SearchLove, and State of Search. You can find her on Twitter or volunteering as a Product Expert on the Google My Business Forum.

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Hi Joy, checking your competitors linked listings is a great idea! Thanks for sharing this. I usually build citations based on what the competition has but focusing on the linked listings is genius.

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