More huge problems with citations on Google Places!

So I have been posting about Google places several times in the past, showing some of the problems I have been experience and asking Google to fix these issues, in some cases you are dealing with very high traffic terms so I am dumbfounded when these problems with citations are not fixed for months if not years. In November I located a in this post: with a term which has around 6,000+ queries a month in Australia this issue was giving around 100+ citations which were false.

Now this problem noted in the post has not been fixed I have noticed another issue, I was recently researching the term “Plumbing Sydney” and I saw some very interesting Google Places citation data. I will let the following images do the talking:

The first image shows the term, plumbing Sydney with a bunsiness CBD Plumbing ranking in first position.

citations problems Google places 1
citations problems Google places 1

The second image shows that 6 reviews are coming from a website called “Top 10 Australia” interesting website for a Plumbers to be on wouldn’t you think?

citations problems Google places 2
citations problems Google places 2

So when you then click this link on the 3rd image it links you up to Shangri-La Hotel Sydney? Random!! This is not even the right business it is a totally different business which is been linked to yet the review citations are been counted for CBD Plumbing, Unfair isn’t it!

citations problems Google places 3
citations problems Google places 3

Try this search term yourself:

So this leaves me with the feeling that Google places review data should not even be counted by Google at times, it is a strong ranking factor in high competition niches so then you have citation data with so many issues.

I wonder if Google is on top of these problems within Google Places! It is annoying me and I am sure it is annoying many other digital marketers.

Please post your thoughts below on this matter:

14 Replies to “More huge problems with citations on Google Places!”

  1. Strange they usually manage to mix them up when they are serviced officers or shared locations… my only observation is the Shangri-La listing seems to be tied to some sketchy Hotel Marketing listing that has a number of text listings of local businesses in Sydney listed on “” which seems to try and influence local rankings…. that is all…

  2. Hi David,

    Originally I thought that could be the case due to locations been mixed up, yet the Shang-ri La and this business location are very far apart. Some very dodgy things happening in the AU market with places, too many fly by night companies looking to make quick cash grabs.
    Nice observation with the all hours florist, I have seen several instances in AU serps of this type of thing happening.



  3. Well this is not my client, but from a dynamic level things will be moving for sure that is if Google decides to fix these problems. It does take them a very long time and this specific problem is quite big imo if you a competitor.

  4. The addresses are not nearby each other, but the location of Shangri-La Hotel is “Sydney CBD”, i.e. matching the plumbing company business name.

    The number of reviews coming from unstructured non-review specialized websites is very often random and I believe it does not play significant role in the rankings as do not the reviews from these websites.

    Such weird reviews started popping up after Google decided to use the microformat marked-up testimonials and attach them to the (supposedly) corresponding Google Places listings. As you can see, they failed. You can see another example here:
    (from May 2011)


  5. Hi Nyagoslav thank you for the comment, I really like your blog seme good content on it about local optimization.

    Whilst I agree that Review data authority has dropped from been a key element in ranking overall from what I have seen from the numerous places campaigns I have been involved with.

    In my thought Google should not even include citation data, I think it mixes up the process and makes things way too complex.

    If you are looking for another example of citation data been way off I had a blog post on it November last year.

    This post was more about citations for the wrong location, I don’t know if Sydney CBD has a reference to the data as a huge number of businesses use that term.



  6. With all the peculiarities of the entire system in the last places on Google, it has been speculated that under the hood gaffes were a reflection of the biggest changes and most visible ahead. This screen could be one of those changes. Sent to me by Nora and Regev Yam, shows some significant differences from the current locations page.

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