Duplicate in Name of Business with Attorneys and Doctors

Joined
Jul 16, 2014
Messages
27
I've had many back and forth emails on this with Express Update (Infogroup) and CityGrid. This is likely a problem for many law firms, doctors, etc where there are multiple professionals under a single company.

The problem is with duplicate listings. For a client of mine, they have two listings in infogroup as well as citygrid.

http://www.expressupdate.com/search?query=2147209552

You'll notice they are identical except for the name of one listing is the professionals name vs. the name of the firm. Express Update and CityGrid will not remove the listing, despite already claiming it.

They state that in this industry, customers are likely to search for the professionals name vs. the firm name. So they won't remove it. Does this negatively affect local search in your mind?

What do you do with your attorney and doctor clients? Use the firm name, or create multiple listings for each professional?
 

Linda Buquet

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Jun 28, 2012
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Dr and atty listings will almost always hurt the ranking for the main practice listing. But Google will no longer remove practitioner listings. (Many other data sources too as they see them as individual business entities.)

Dr/Atty listings can cause you to lose reviews as well as ranking for the practice listing if they are set up wrong, as most are.

But don't create or claim Dr/atty listings, instead "minimize" them!

I wrote up a strategy for dealing with the ranking problem below. All the consultants that have tried it tell me it works well. (Do user edits right on the listing, don't claim them.)

Read both in detail in order.

<a href="http://marketing-blog.catalystemarketing.com/google-places-duplicates-doctor-dentist-lawyer.html">Google Places DUPLICATES – Have Doctor, Dentist or Lawyer DUPES? You NEED to Read This</a>

<a href="http://marketing-blog.catalystemarketing.com/google-places-duplicate-listing-dentists-doctors.html">Overcoming New Google Places Duplicate Listing Problems for Dentists, Doctors, Attorneys</a>
 
Joined
Jul 16, 2014
Messages
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That's very helpful advice, but it's for Google + pages. I'm only having the issue with Express Update (infogroup) and citygrid which then push out the listings to multiple sites.

Express Update doesn't have a way for a user to make edits. I could go to all the sites they push out to, and get the listings removed. But every few months, they would be added again and it's a lot of work.

My only thought is to claim the listing and make up a name, address and phone number unique to that listing with no bearing to the company. If accepted, then it wouldn't be counted as a duplicate.

Still emailing customer service at express update and citygrid, so I will keep this up to date. Thanks Lisa for sharing your insights, and let me know if I read between the lines. I may have missed your recommendations for sites that aren't Google Places.
 

Linda Buquet

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No sorry, I skipped right to the Google part which is what most are worried about.

I was going by the assumption that the concern about duplicates on the other sites is that they would create Google Local dupes which is what most people are concerned about is their Google ranking.

And I was also assuming that if those dupes have propagated across the web then even if you can't see them, it's likely Google DID already create those extra listings.

So I jumped right to the Google dupes, since that's normally the ultimate concern.

I don't think there is anything you can do except maybe edit at the 3rd part source and do the same thing I recommended above. Be sure to name it Atty name only and link goes to the bio page not home page.
 

Jake Jordan

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Joined
Oct 21, 2013
Messages
4
Linda-

I totally get the approach for physicians who are currently listed as a 'places' entity, but do you recommend still going ahead with creating a G+ Personal Profile for the physicians?

In that case do you link to the /about-us type page in the profile as well?

If there is no dup created in the 'places' arena for the physician I assume the G+ personal page is a good idea. If there are already dups to deal with - thinking it might cause harm??
 

Linda Buquet

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"but do you recommend still going ahead with creating a G+ Personal Profile for the physicians?"

Only if they will use it. If they aren't actively doing social on each page I would not bother. I mean I guess it does not hurt to have a profile in case anyone searches by name in G+, but I think it's rare patients would do that. Most are searching on Google and if it's a profile page only it won't show up there.
 
Joined
Jul 16, 2014
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Update on this..

I'm still digging into the root problem. Here's what appears to be what happened.

Months ago, I noticed there were personal listings for my attorney clients in Yahoo and Express Update.

I was able to fix Yahoo by paying for a premium listing, it suppressed the duplicates, not sure if there is a better suggestion.

On Express Update, I claimed all listings, then since they wouldn't delete the personal listings after multiple attempts, I simply edited the information to match the firm's detail.

Somehow, they caught on to this, and reverted the duplicate (past personal) listings back to show the personal names of the attorneys.

I was able to finally remove the personal listings by having an email from the owner with the website domain contact customer service at express update.

However, Axciom also got a hold of this information and I am not sure how. They also published the personal listings. I questioned them on this, and they told me to discuss with the local phone company.
 

Linda Buquet

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You can't really get rid of Dr and Attorney type listings.

They have individual professional licenses that get picked up by various data providers plus many of the professional directories list the attorneys and Drs by name. All those mentions of name, address, phone - even though it's a professional, not the practice, propagate out across the web.

Plus many practices don't have a practice name. The practice name IS John Doe DDS.

So I don't think playing wack a mole with them will get you anything except frustration.

I'm doing a post later in the week about dupes and duplicate suppression (not on Google but the whole issue we are talking about here with all the 3rd party sites.) I have some screenshots I'm going to share from Yext that shows all the different data sources and then how various publishers try to sort the data that is very enlightening and will help you understand the depth of the problem. I'd share it now, but don't have it done yet.

I'll try to remember and post a link here when I get it finished.

So I don't think there is much you can do except what Colan and I both recommended.
Minimize the professional listings.
 

jpsokol

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Joined
Oct 9, 2014
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1
I was on the phone with Infogroup content feedback a few weeks ago and noted a few things that may be of interest. I am helping an orthodontic practice clean up their data - which is a royal mess.

If the infogroup people think you're the doctor, you're ok. When I was asked if I was an "SEO" - I almost was hung up on. Was told to go to bulk uploads on the website. Luckily I was at my client's office and told the woman I could put the doctor on the phone - so that saved me. There was an old business with their address and phone number that Infogroup indicated it had listed. So they agreed to remove that once doctor answered their questions.

I was able to get back on the phone and it wasn't the lady who almost hung up on me, but another nicer man who we had to transfer to for the removal of the old listing. So he was nice enough to answer some questions. He indicated that the "firm" listing - which is the main listing for the biz - is only one. They actively pursue getting "provider" listings - names of doctors appended to the main "firm" listing. Seems this is to help the likes of YP, Supermedia and other such directories so if someone is searching for the doctor they can find him/her in such great resources. Of course the obvious reply is "how many people look up doctors there today?". It's all about Google - and getting the searches and traffic to their websites.

Anyhow, the man indicated that you can request to have the "provider" listings suppressed - which I would think is better from a Google SEO perspective? This can be done in writing - by snail mail - as well as email.

My approach is to not have all these "provider" listings because they show up in many other places like supermedia and only clutter the data stream. That was my experience recently with Infogroup/expressupdate.
 

Linda Buquet

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Jun 28, 2012
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Thanks so much jpsokol and welcome!

That was really helpful. Would you mind doing a new thread here in the dupe section titled something like Dr Dupes and Infogroup? This info will get buried in this thread where no one will see it and copying to a new thread with descriptive title might help others who need it.

Thanks!
 
Joined
Jul 16, 2014
Messages
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Just an update on this post, the funny thing is Google My Business Guidelines still allow for this to happen. Even though in my mind, it is bad practice.

Waiting for the day when they are updated. I now have an attorney client that has a firm listing that ranks well and a personal attorney listing that ranks well. Both are in the first two results for the local pack. On mobile, the firm is essentially dominating the local pack due to these personal listings.

Of course the disadvantage is it potentially causes confusion for customers, splits the ability to earn reviews and perhaps over time the duplicates will affect the visibility of firm.

For now, I will likely still attempt to get the duplicates removed.
 

Linda Buquet

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Jun 28, 2012
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Did that just start happening in the past few days?

Likely it's due to the huge algo change we've been discussing that just hit.

<a href="http://www.localsearchforum.com/google-local/32221-major-google-local-algo-changes-results-less-localized.html">Major Google Local Algo Changes - Results Less Localized</a>

In the past Google would typically not award 2 listings from the same practice a place in the pack.
 

CodyBaird

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Joined
Jan 4, 2013
Messages
350
I'm with Linda here. I understand your concern but serps are bonkers right now and probably will be for the immediate future. I would be patient and circle back after the madness dies down. Hell half of the searches completed the past week are by search firms, search ranking software and business owners.
 

warrenpd

Member
Joined
Dec 19, 2014
Messages
29
Infogroup will delete practitioner profiles but you need to go through a process to verify that you are the practitioner. I had to claim the listing, call them and then have the attorney email them from her verified account. Then they deleted it.
 

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