NAP: Local Search and You!

Reaching the top of Google’s search results is tough, but it’s the key to a successful online presence! How can NAP help you succeed where others have failed?

Bob bought his first car when he was 18, but it’s been a few years and a few thousand miles, and he’s looking for an upgrade. The first thing Bob did was head to Google and search for “new cars near me.” He might even include the brand name of the car (ex: Ford or Mitsubishi) or look for a specific model year. But the core idea of the search remains the same: he wants to find a dealership near his house with the best price for his search that also has a great set of reviews from other people in his neighborhood! While sitting in his chair he starts looking on his laptop but gets distracted by his family – perhaps he’ll return to his search later.

Some time passes and Bob pulls out his phone to pick up where he left off. Thanks to cross-device tab management Bob continues on his journey without missing a beat. But there’s a problem, because he’s seeing your competitor’s business before he sees yours! Satisfied with his search result, Bob decides to make a purchase then and there, negating a potential sale for your business. But not all is lost, for this was only an example, and one that can be avoided.

Bob’s off to buy a car from your competitor!

Now, why didn’t your business rank above your competitor’s? When Google goes to rank a business within its Local Three-Pack (the top three listings on a search results page) one of the things it looks for is consistency in something called NAP. NAP stands for Name, Address, Phone and is one of the cornerstones of maintaining a successful online presence.

But how does Google measure this metric? It does so by scraping various listing sites like DealerRater, Foursquare, Yelp, and other listing directories and compares the information to what it has on a business’ Google My Business (GMB) page and its own internal database. The more consistent the information is, and the more authoritative a listing directory’s online presence is, the more likely Google will see this as trustworthy and may rank your GMB profile higher on their search results page.

Now, this is often tied into other factors such as a business’ website information, Facebook page, and GMB page information in determining accuracy. This information is often displayed on the Knowledge Graph (the panel displayed on the right side of certain search results) and can be edited by anyone from the Knowledge Graph result or from the listing hosted on Google Maps. Note that a business listing’s Knowledge Graph, Google Maps profile, and GMB page are one-in-the-same for information purposes, so a change to one means a change to all. Google is more likely to reject changes for information that would be interpreted as incorrect, like changing a business listing’s address, when other authoritative sources within its NAP web show contradictory results. This can save you from inaccurate or even malicious edits by other people or businesses, but this dives into something outside the scope of this post; another post for another time, perhaps.

Getting to the top of Google’s Search Results Page isn’t easy, but we’re here to help!

Maintaining an online presence is often a laborious task, as you have to check multiple directory listings for small changes in data (2205 Locke Ave vs 2205 Locke Dr) that can update at any time. Sometimes this data can be changed without your knowledge or consent, so it can be difficult and time consuming to keep track of so many listings. Luckily, we’re here to help at Aronson Advertising. Simply fill out our contact form or call us at 847-297-1700 for more information or to speak with our digital specialists!

Learn how Aronson can help your business grow!