When it comes to local listings management, there’s a direct correlation between the number of listings you manage and the amount of grumbling, cursing and general hand-wringing you do.
It isn’t easy for enterprise brands to get their location data in order.
Juggling the info for hundreds or thousands of locations can quickly become overwhelming.
And it’s not uncommon for enterprise brands to feel like they’re playing SEO whack-a-mole, constantly beating down duplicate listings, inaccurate data and any local search changes that inevitably pop up from Google.
Fortunately, there are steps enterprise brands can take to tame their unruly location data and prevent it from getting out of hand in the future.
The unique challenges facing enterprise local listings management
For enterprise brands just starting to get their location data in order, local listings problems can typically be boiled down into two categories:
an overwhelming, baffling, disparate, inaccurate and outright maddening heap of location data; and
human nature’s basic resistance to change.
I’ll address each of these in turn.
Overwhelming location data
Perhaps the biggest challenge for enterprise brands trying to manage their location data is the overwhelming number of sources that their location data comes from.
A large organization will typically have multiple databases that contain various elements of location data from departments such as accounting, shipping, legal and so forth.
Furthermore, while all of this data likely meets the individual needs of the department that it comes from, it’s highly unlikely that the data meets the stringent quality standards Google and the other search engines require.
In other words, their location data isn’t actionable beyond their originally intended purpose.
The location data problem for enterprise brands is also compounded by the fact that many of the addresses for their various locations aren’t standardized.
Often, before an enterprise brand decides to bring all of their location data management under one roof, those responsible for entering location data into Google My Business and the like are the individual store managers and franchise owners.
How many of those individual store managers and franchisees know how to properly format an address that Google will like?