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The State of Spam Preventing: What We Discovered From Analyzing 5,306 Listings in 16 Industries


Within the 2021 Native Search Rating Elements Research, there was a transparent pattern that caught out. Within the commentary, folks listed spam-fighting as each an ‘efficient technique’ and a ‘technique that doesn’t appear to work anymore’. Wait, what? It’d make you marvel if you have to be prioritizing reporting spam anymore.  To assist reply these questions, I’m going to be sharing some particulars from a latest examine we performed at Sterling Sky.

In This Research

  1. What industries have the best share of pretend Google listings?
  2. Is spam declining in comparison with 3 years in the past?
  3. How massive of an issue is key phrase stuffing?


For this examine, over a four-year interval, we checked out 5306 listings, throughout 16 totally different industries, that have been rating on Google.  Our purpose was to attempt to reply a lot of questions on how efficient spam-fighting actually is and if spam remains to be an issue on Google.  On this examine, you’ll see us utilizing the terminology “pretend itemizing”.  We outline a “pretend itemizing” as a Google Enterprise Profile (previously Google My Enterprise itemizing) that was created and violates Google’s tips, thus they eliminated it after it was reported.

Sterling Sky fake listing study


What Industries Have the Highest Share of Faux Google Listings?

The very first thing to notice proper off the bat is that folks’s mileage might differ when coping with spam attributable to how drastically totally different it may be throughout totally different industries.  This graph seems on the whole variety of listings we checked out in every business, and what % of these listings have been faraway from Google for violating their tips. 


TradeVariety of ListingsComplete Listings Google Eliminated% Eliminated
Hair Restoration2498935.7%
Funeral Companies1281511.7%
Drug Rehab57930152.0%
Dwelling Safety32110332.1%
Prison Attorneys53112323.2%
Tree Service1975728.9%
Private Damage Attorneys41631575.7%
Chapter Attorneys1993718.6%
Junk Vehicles76761580.2%
Non-public Investigators27516158.5%
Insurance coverage19713267.0%
Storage Door Restore67659287.6%


Is Spam Declining In comparison with 3 Years In the past?

In response to Google’s numbers, they eliminated 7 million pretend enterprise listings in 2021.  This quantity was 2 million in 2017 and was 3 million in 2018.  630,000 of the listings they eliminated have been ones that customers reported to Google to take away.  That quantity has grown from 250,000 in 2018. So, not solely is Google stopping extra folks from making an attempt to create pretend listings, however extra customers are literally reporting pretend listings too – in contrast to some years in the past.

What number of pretend listings you discover in a single market or business can actually differ based mostly on how massive of a market it’s.  Right here is an instance of the way it appeared for the junk automotive business, in a big metropolis, over the previous couple of years:

fake junk car listings removed

Right here is the way it seems for just a few different industries, by yr, based on our examine:

Fake listings removed by yearThere are some industries which have really improved drastically within the final couple of years.  For instance, the pretend itemizing community that plagued the private harm lawyer business in 2019 really acquired principally faraway from Google they usually have now moved on to Bing.  Simply search “automotive accident lawyer [insert city]” on Bing, and also you’ll get outcomes like this:
bing search results car accident lawyer

Nevertheless, Google has not solved the massive lead-generating networks for different industries, just like the storage door restore business.  Faux listings are nonetheless a large drawback on this business and pretend listings, like those under, are continuously popping up with pretend evaluations on them.

How Huge of a Drawback is Key phrase Stuffing?

Key phrase stuffing has been a standard apply amongst enterprise house owners and SEOs alike, attributable to how a lot key phrases within the enterprise identify influence rating within the native pack. For this part, we solely outlined one thing as key phrase stuffing if Google really agreed and corrected the enterprise identify.

keyword stuffing by industry


TradeVariety of ListingsComplete Listings Key phrase Stuffing%
Hair Restoration2494317.27%
Funeral Companies1281612.5%
Drug Rehab579427.25%
Dwelling Safety321134.05%
Prison Attorneys531193.58%
Tree Service19773.55%
Private Damage Attorneys416102.40%
Chapter Attorneys19942.01%
Junk Vehicles767151.96%
Non-public Investigators27551.82%
Insurance coverage19731.52%
Storage Door Restore67610.15%


Usually we discovered with key phrase stuffing companies, it might take a number of makes an attempt to get Google to repair the problem

What patterns are you seeing with spam on Google Maps? Share with us within the feedback under.


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