We often get asked how to update a company name, address, or phone number in online business directories on the internet. In this article we will look at the problem of having outdated business information in online directory listings and how to go about correcting your company’s data on the various internet yellow page (IYP) websites.
How to Change Your Business Listing Online
In our NAP (name/address/phone number) correction process, we have a clean up process using the following steps in order:
- Major Aggregators (correct/delete/create)
- YEXT PowerListing Sync (correct/create/suppress)
- Manual listing claiming/correction/elimination
In order to ensure that accurate, consistent information is provided to search engines, SunAnt Interactive performs an inventory of all the major business data aggregators including:
These major listings providers pass on business information to many other internet yellow page type websites. Correcting your business NAP data on these four main listings sources is very important as it will help to ensure that your proper listing data is proliferated downstream to various IYP venues. It won’t fix your listings instantly on multiple directories across the internet, however, it will make certain that incorrect data is not further propagated.
Perform a Yext PowerListing Sync
After updating the major aggregators we move on to the next phase of our listing correction services. In this phase we instantaneously correct a business NAP, simultaneously, across 60+ of the most popular business directory sites including well know venues such as Bing Local, Yahoo Local, CitySearch, SuperPages, MerchantCircle, Yelp, etc, etc.
Before we discovered Yext, we spent way too much time manually claiming listings and/or contacting the individual webmasters with requests to update listing information. SunAnt Interactive is a YEXT Certified Partner, which means we can provide our clients with this listing synchronization service for a more competitive price. Ask us about our Yext Listing Sync Services. Yext, however, is only a part of the remedy!
Manual Listing Correction
There are times when the Yext PowerListing Sync can not successfully change listings on specific venues. We then need to manually claim and update (or delete) the listing with each individual listing website.
For example, if your company already has claimed a Yahoo Local, Bing Local listing or if a listing previously exists due to some sort of paid ‘yellow pages’ campaign, Yext will tell us that they “cannot provide a PowerListing for this location because it is already controlled by another source” or because “it is already a paid advertiser on [the venue’s] website.”
Another example of a major venue to update would be Google+ Local listings. A business needs to ensure that their Google Places (aka Google My Business page) data exactly matches the official NAP info they provide on their company website and all other controllable venues.
Besides Google, Yahoo, & Bing, there are still many instances where duplicate listings can exist. What we suggest is that one should wait a while for the dust settle after performing the first two NAP correction steps before tackling the remaining small time venues.
Some venues may automatically update their listing information due to the trickle down effect of their data providers having new listing information, depending on their relationship with the data publishers.
You may notice that outdated listings still show up in Google’s search results, but when you click through to the actual listing it either already corrected or the listing’s page returns a ‘404 Not Found’ message, or the URL redirects to the ‘proper’ listing. Sometimes an IYP site will simply redact a listing, but keep the original page live, instead of deleting it altogether.
It may take Google a few weeks or months to update their index to reflect the content of the new listings. However, if Google isn’t aware of the new listing URL, it may never get re-index. In this case we suggest to submit all the new and/or old listing URLs to Google via the Google Webmaster Tools Submit URL feature (GWT account needed). This can help to expedite the re-indexation of your updated business NAP info.
Since Google often bases their listings on NAP citations they see around the internet, it is sometimes easier to convince the Google local algorithms to accept a requested or suggested change in a business name, address, or phone number if the proper NAP info has already been updated in many key venues. In general, the less ‘old/outdated’ listing info that Google sees, the better chance you have of getting your G+ Local listing to update correctly.
A major benefit of having a clean representation of your company’s NAP info across the internet is that search engines can see a uniform and clean NAP presence online as a signal of trust of the company which can lead to better website rankings as compared to a business with a mess of incorrect, duplicate, or outdated business listing.
NAP Correction Services
If you would like help fixing your online business listings, please fill out our NAP request form or contact us and we will perform an audit of your online business listings across all the various Internet Yellow Page (IYP) directories and the major data aggregators. We will help you determine what exactly needs to be done in your particular NAP situation.
Get started with updating your business listings now!