Understanding Local: New Google Business Guidelines Update

Earlier this month, Google updated their “My Business” guidelines. Local business owners see these and have a tendency to start to panic. Our advice to you is STOP, take a breath, and continue reading.

2 Most Important Highlights From the Update:

Descriptors In Your Business Name Are No Longer Allowed

Back in February, Google released a statement that indicated that it was appropriate, even encouraged, to add descriptive keywords to your business name. However, they now state that listings that use descriptors in their business name will eventually be penalized. We’re actually a fan of this update, as it forces Google to take a better look at your website and determine industry relevance based on your websites content.

Accurate Business Categories

Google has come out and said they want business owners to use “as few categories as possible to describe your overall core business from the provided list.” Again, these updates are all in efforts to make things as clearly as possible, getting rid of any additional methods people might use to rank higher. Fixing this one is easy, just make sure you use your brand name only as your business name.

Note: IF your business has keyword descriptors in its name, do not be afraid, the citations you’ve built will prove that it is indeed your brand.

It’s been widely debated whether or not Google will actually enforce these guidelines. While a lot of very influential and intelligent Local experts think it won’t be enforced, we believe it’s important to fix the issues now, rather than wait and see if/when the penalties start rolling in!

Image credit to: InnovationManagement.se


David is a member of the internet marketing team and enjoys the Local aspect of a businesses online efforts.

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