As mentioned in the last post, Search Engine Land has made local search marketing a major focus for this week, and I wanted to give input on how select articles can help out local Minnesota businesses.
In the above series, Mike Blumenthal writes a great piece regarding Yahoo local and User Denigrated Content. It’s really worth the read. Users can affect how people view your online business results, good or not-so-good.
Yahoo Local (not the only victim) has definitely had its problems in their listings with bogus addresses and fake user reviews. In March 2007, I posted about local florist results and noted that the Yahoo Local listings were pretty relevant in Minneapolis. It didn’t take long for Cathy to point out that I was wrong. Oops. 🙂
In June, I posted about a Yahoo Local result that makes the Interweb cry. An attorney (not local to MN) basically spammed Yahoo Local (and Google Maps, and CitySearch) with fake, self-generated five-star ratings and keyword-rich user reviews every month, almost to the date. They’re still all there today.
So, Minnesota businesses… it’s a good idea to check your online reputation anyway, but you can watch out for manipulation as well. Maybe you’ll see a fake business and/or bogus address listed above you, competing business owners that love themselves and write fake reviews about them, or in rare cases, write some fake BS about you. Un…cool. The silver lining is that you can usually report these results as