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  1. #1
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    Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Hi All,

    I've skirted around this issue a while in a few different forums but still don't feel I have a definitive answer so please excuse this if you've seen it before.

    I'm trying to help a Dentist with local SEO. The issue I've run into is what to list as city for all NAP info.

    Her dental office is located in a small neighborhood called Unionville which is located inside the larger city of Markham. In Map Maker, Unionville would be a sub-locality within the city of Markham.

    The post office recognizes our office as with Unionville as a city, patients recognize us as being in Unionville and this is what we want to rank for. Up until yesterday several of our competitors had their cities listed as Unionville (Map Maker editors changed this when I mentioned it).

    I have been waffling on this a while and when I had Markham as our city in GMB (and Map Maker and our website etc.) we ranked below 50 for keywords "Dentist Unionville" in local search. When I changed this to Unionville we moved up to 8th just like that.

    The issue I'm having is that Map Maker editors are adamant that the city should be listed as Markham. I worry that if the city is listed as Markham in Map Maker that it will have to be listed as Markham everywhere across the internet for the sake of consistent NAP. And then if that happens we won't be able to rank for Dentist Unionville which is really the neighborhood that is important and most representative of where we are.

    So what should I do? Unionville or Markham? Would having Markham as my city kill my chances of ranking for keywords Dentist Unionville as I suspect?

    I have checked and it seems like many businesses list neighborhoods as their cities such as Brooklyn (vs NYC) or Encino (Vs. LA) or Thornhill Canada (which is actually a town split between two cities, Vaughan and Markham) . Has anyone come across anything like this before?

    Any thoughts / advice would be most appreciated.
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  3. #2
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Anyone have any ideas?
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Hi Daniel,

    Sorry but pros are not usually here much over the weekend, they are taking a break from work.

    The address needs to be wherever the physical location is. Google does not map PO addresses.

    What happens when you type street address Unionville in Google maps. Does it auto correct it to Markham? If so that's the address you should be using.

    Unless you can prove Google maps is wrong and the address technically is in Unionville. In that case it's a little more complicated because you have to get Google to correct maps.

    I don't really have much feedback about the citation part but if you bump this on Monday maybe some other pros will weigh in.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Thanks for the reply Linda.

    Just to be clear, this is not a PO address. It is a physical address. The issue is whether for the purposes of local SEO this physical address could or should be associated with Unionville as the city (which we identify more with and want to rank for) as opposed to Markham. The locals would probably say the business is located in Unionville, though technically Unionville is a neighborhood or sub-locality in the larger city of Markham.

    I tried your Google Maps suggestion. When I input the street address (4721 Highway 7) it autocompleted to include Markahm, HOWEVER when wrote "4721 Highway 7 Unionville", the full result I got back was "4721 Highway 7, Unionville, Markham, ON, Canada"

    Any further thoughts? If not I'll try bumping tomorrow as you suggested.

    Thanks again for your reply.
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Linda, totally up to you, but I would suggest moving this thread to the Map Maker section of the forum to try and get some input from Andrew.
    Colan Nielsen l GMB Top Contributor
    Vice President, Local Search at Sterling Sky
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Good point Colan. I thought about moving to NAP issues since that's the title and core issue. But you are right MM might get Andrew or someone over here.

    Quote Originally Posted by DanielF View Post
    Thanks for the reply Linda.

    Just to be clear, this is not a PO address. It is a physical address. The issue is whether for the purposes of local SEO this physical address could or should be associated with Unionville as the city (which we identify more with and want to rank for) as opposed to Markham. The locals would probably say the business is located in Unionville, though technically Unionville is a neighborhood or sub-locality in the larger city of Markham.
    I get your line of thinking Daniel, but like a said above, the address has to be what the address actually is. No changing it for SEO purposes or for what the locals think. It has to be accurate. You can hurt yourself more by making the city different than the one that is correct technically and according to maps.

    I searched on MM for businesses at that same address and some say M and some say U for city. Your client currently does list U. But there have been tons of address changes back and forth between cities and also different formats of street address which likely is hurting you too.

    It's possible that this is one of those cases where there are 2 correct options. If an MM expert does not answer by Tues I would ask over at the MM forum.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Per Wikipedia:

    Population Unionville 80,000
    Population Markham 302,000 including Unionville

    Just from a business perspective Unionville has a large enough population ....but Markham is significantly larger and everyone in Unionville knows they are within Markham. I'd want to know if the Dentist is drawing existing customers from beyond Unionville. In either case I'd shoot for top 3.

    I think bringing this to the attention of the MM experts is a wise suggestion.
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    So if I were to go with Markham for the city in Map Maker, does that mean I would have to go with Markham in every other place across the web (website, 3rd party sites)? I know people say it shouldn't have an impact on searches for Dentist Unionville but from my experience, it seems it has.

    From my discussion with the dentist, it seems like most clients are from close by and coming from the neighborhood of Unionville which is why I'd prefer to use and rank for that.

    In my experience with the MM community, most have been pretty rigid about the city needing to be Markham even at the expense of ranking what we want to rank for.
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Hi Daniel,

    I understand what you are trying to do but you can't change city just to rank better in a city.

    You need to look at it from Google's viewpoint, which is where the mappers are coming from. Google wants accurate data. They don't care about or consider rankings. The city must be whatever city client is physically located in.

    Most people come here with the exact opposite problem as you. They are in the smaller suburb but want to rank in the big metro. But your problem is easier, trying to rank in the smaller suburb.

    FYI I just Googled: dentist Unionville, Canada (But I used Google US so results might be slightly different)

    But ALL the top ranking Dentists have Markham listed as the city.
    NONE of the top 5 list Unionville.


    It looks to me like Markham is the city. And they all rank so it's other ranking factors at play.

    As far as citations - they should all match the correct address in GMB. However Google looks at all kinds of signals. So I'd be sure Unionville is prominent in all the right places on the site, including schema. And mention Unionville right up front on all citation descriptions.

    I'd also study the top 3 in Markham that rank for Unionville and see what they are doing.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

    Don't Miss Important News & Tips! Subscribe to Daily Email Digest Here

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon".
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  11. #10
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    Re: Best Way to Represent City for NAP

    Linda's point seems most logical to me. I would also be curious about Andrews and Joys opinion. I would tackle Unionville with your on page by using it in your areas served, headers, content, and mentioning Unionville landmarks

    Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
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