Google Maps, PlaceRank & Wikipedia

From Chris Smith’s terrific column today on Google Maps, SEO and Wikipedia:

Google’s recent introduction of Place Pages within Maps came in sync with some key adjustments in the factors used to rank local search content. The combination of changes has resulted in Wikipedia abruptly emerging as a major influence on local search rankings. I’ll describe what appears to have ve happened, and how it may have impacted your local business rankings.

When Place Pages were introduced into Google Maps, Google was attempting to expand content to provide locations and information about all sorts of things beyond just businesses. The Maps team sought to provide information about points-of-interest such as parks, monuments, forests, major buildings, historical markers, natural features and more.

Read the rest at Search Engine Land.

6 Responses to “Google Maps, PlaceRank & Wikipedia”

  1. Yahoo! Messenger 9.0 BETA – TV review Says:

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  2. Malcolm Lewis Says:

    Fascinating article. Seems like Google rushed to market with this one. But like most companies they like to iterate early and often, which isn’t necessarily a bad approach. I imagine a few algo tweaks can eliminate the false positive associations between businesses and landmarks.

  3. toej Says:

    Nice article. Google not just innovative they are more than that. They bring everything to your desktop. Google maps is a technology evolution to my knowledge.

  4. Roman Says:

    Well i like the many integrated facts in google maps. When searching for a great location, i see the near points of interest.
    Even interesting for restaurants or stores. They generate good traffic over google maps, i think.

  5. Chris Silver Smith Says:

    Roman: I agree — if a business’s Place Page had a section outlining nearby points of interest, I think it’d be great.

    However, Google hasn’t done this or hasn’t labelled the local points of interest as such on Place Pages, and the examples I outlined clearly indicated instances where algorithms associated data incorrectly with business profile data. At least here-to-fore, the Description section on a business’s page was to only show data specifically about the business. Now it’s confusingly displaying info about other entities aside from the business itself — likely due to merely coincidental similarities of names coupled with proximity. Also, the instances where Google thought a Wikipedia URL was the main URL of a business were errors, too.

    I believe the cases of incorrect associations will be removed as Google further refines their data processing.

  6. Herretoej Says:

    Great blog really, your posts are so informative and good for local marketing.

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