How to Avoid Common Mistakes When Managing Business Listings

How to Avoid Common Mistakes When Managing Business Listings

Business listings are vital for boosting online visibility and conversions in this digital age. When done right, they can help a business scale new heights. On the other hand, making a few common and easily avoidable mistakes while managing business listings can defeat their entire purpose. Such listings can do more harm than good to a business.

Read on to learn about the common mistakes in managing business listings and the best practices that can help you avoid them.

The Importance of Being Listed

Let’s first take a look at the reasons why your business needs to be listed across online platforms. 

The prime purpose of a business listing is to provide essential details about a business, including NAP+W (Name, Address, Phone Number and Website), hours of operation, products/services, photos, videos, and other multimedia content. These details make it easier for potential customers to discover a business, understand it, and make contact as they require. 

According to a survey, 98% of consumers turn to the information to look for information on local businesses. You need business listings because you want information about your business to show up when potential customers come looking. 

With digital business listings, you can build valuable links for your business, and improve your search engine rankings. ‘Near me’ searches have grown exponentially over the past few years. Customers are increasingly using their mobile devices to look for products to buy, services to utilize, places to visit, and activities to do. Google used the term micro-moments for these intent-rich moments. Business listings can help you capitalize on the opportunities that these micro-moments present. 

According to insights from Google, of the people who search for something nearby, 76% of them turn up at a business within 24 hours. Customers will arrive at your doorstep of their own accord, but that will happen only if your business listings are consistent and accurate. Effective listings increase the effectiveness of your local SEO efforts and help your business show up for relevant search queries. 

In a way, business listings serve as virtual storefronts. They have a significant impact on customer acquisition and revenue. They affect the first impression of your brand. If your listing has issues, it could be the last impression of your business. After all, business listings have the potential to affect the overall reputation of your business.  

Common Mistakes in Managing Business Listings 

Most business listings are free, but some may require payment. Whether your listings are free, paid, or both, you need to ensure they are free of issues and mistakes. Only then will the listings lead to the growth of your business. Many listings suffer from these common and critical mistakes: 

Inconsistent Business Information

Inconsistency in the most basic details (NAP+W) in listings across different platforms can confuse customers and lead to distrust in your brand and business. Customers tend to verify the information about a business by cross-checking what they’ve found on a platform with the details of others. If there is any inconsistency between the details, customers are likely to view it as a red flag.

Moreover, inconsistency in information is also likely to impact your local SEO negatively. One of the major factors based on which search engines validate a business is the consistency of information. Inconsistent listings puzzle search engines, eventually impacting your business's credibility and online visibility.

Incomplete Profiles

The main purpose of listing your business is to make it easier for customers to find and contact your business, so not filling out all essential information in your profile can prove to be a huge disadvantage.

Catching the attention of customers in the intensely competitive digital arena is challenging as it is. Once your listing catches their eye, if it does not instantly provide the information they are seeking, the customer will move on to the next one. With incomplete profiles, businesses also fail to utilize all options and features provided by listing platforms. 

Failing to Update Listings 

In the business field, changes are inevitable. It could be that your business has moved to another place or a contact number has changed. Perhaps, you have discontinued a product or service. You need to update your listings when such changes take place.

A study on business directories found that incorrect information deters 63% of consumers from opting for a business. You don’t want to lose potential customers just because you didn’t update your listings.

Neglecting Reviews

Surveys have found that 95% of customers look at online reviews before they make purchase decisions, and if a brand has positive reviews, 58% of customers are willing to pay more for its products. This is just a glimpse of the power of reviews. 

As you can see in the infographic below, only 37% of consumers leave a positive review. A common mistake businesses make is not requesting reviews from satisfied customers. 

Source: Bright Local


Another mistake is ignoring the reviews, whether positive or negative, and failing to provide a swift and satisfactory response. It shows that the business does not care about the experience of the customers. 

Some Other Mistakes

These are some other common mistakes that mar the effectiveness of business listings:

  • Duplicate listings: Businesses may accidentally create duplicate listings, but these can confound users and search engines. These duplicate listings need to be identified, merged, and deleted as appropriate.
  • Not including visual content: Visual content grabs attention, engages the potential customer, and increases the memorability of a brand, and not including such content can make a business miss out on valuable opportunities.
  • Overlooking niche directories: Many businesses only create listings on major platforms and ignore or forget about niche platforms that are relevant to their business. Niche platforms can give your business exposure to the right kind of audience.
  • Ignoring Local SEO in listings: Not using relevant keywords in the description and tags, and failing to add attributes and categories that correctly represent your business can limit the online visibility of your business. Ignoring local SEO in listings hinders the chances of attracting nearby customers.
  • Not Using Analytics: Analytics help gauge a listing's impact, and you can make adjustments as necessary if it’s not having the desired effect. Utilize the analytics features of listing platforms and third-party analytics tools to monitor the effectiveness of your listings.
  • Violating Terms and Guidelines: Businesses violate the terms and conditions of the listing platform at times. Disregarding or violating the terms and conditions can lead to the deletion of the listing and more severe penalties, such as the imposition of a permanent ban.

Best Practices for Effective Business Listing Management

To ensure that your business listings will have the desired effect, you need to adopt the best practices in listing management. Here’s a rundown of a few of them:

Using Relevant Platforms

Popular listing platforms include Google Business Profile, Yelp, and Bing Places. While your business needs listings on the big platforms, you should also create listings on industry-specific, local, and niche directories to increase your business's listing footprint. 

Consistent, Complete, and Accurate Information

Ensure that your NAP+W information is accurate and consistent across all platforms. Make it easy for customers to contact your business. Connect your website, listings, and business data sources. With API integration, you can automatically sync all changes in business details.

Source: Freepik

Responding to Reviews

Responding to positive reviews helps cultivate good relationships with customers, increases loyalty, and boosts customer retention. Politely addressing bad reviews shows the customers that your brand is receptive to constructive criticism and helps you turn the negative perception around. You could get the customers to give your business another chance. 

Finding and responding to all reviews on the various platforms can be difficult. Consider using the best online reputation management software to help you engage with customers, and respond to reviews effectively and on time. 

Adding Visual Content

Amp up the visual appeal of your listing and grab the attention of potential customers with attractive content that convincingly conveys important details about your products/services and brand.

Regular Audit and Update

Auditing and manually updating all your business listings place huge demands on time and energy. Managing listings is a tedious and time-consuming process, albeit important. Moreover, when done manually, there is always the possibility of errors. The solution is to use listing management software to monitor and regularly update your business listings. 

Conclusion: Get the Most Out of Your Business Listings

To avoid common pitfalls, business listings require a vigilant and proactive approach. Effective listing management is not a once-and-done thing; it is a continuous process. It’s important to invest time and pay attention to business listings as these can significantly impact visibility and credibility. Fortify the online presence of your brand with accurate business listings across various relevant platforms.


If you’re looking to work with certified digital marketing professionals, TechWyse Internet Marketing is here to help! To book an appointment, call 866-208-3095 or contact us here.

It's a competitive market. Contact us to learn how you can stand out from the crowd.

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