Tips to Ensure Updated Local Search Results after Relocating to a New Address
If your business relocates to a new address then you will need to take several steps to ensure that your new address is displayed on Google and other search results. Merely changing your address on your website or on Google Plus will not solve your problem.
Most businesses believe that editing their address on Google Plus will inform Google bots about their new location and display it on search results. However, Google bots collect and index data from countless sources on the online world. These include several sites that command higher authority such as Acxiom, Infogroup, Localeze, etc.
Search engines such as Google identify your digital data by way of your business name, address, and phone number or NAP. Changing your address only confuses search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc., since your business name no longer possesses your old address. This in turn, can result in lowered rankings and in some cases will prevent your website from appearing in results even when visitors explicitly try to locate you.
You can firstly access your rankings by visiting getlisted.org and checking the Accuracy Report for your old and new address. You will be able to observe how search engines have indexed your website based on your old and new addresses. If your phone number has remained the same and if you have shifted in the same neighborhood or area code then you will require less effort.
Your next step will be to perform a Google search on your business name and make a list of all websites that are still displaying your old address. You can create a worksheet in Excel to make it easier to track and rectify the problem. In addition, you should also scout Google Plus pages since Google might display the website names from where it has collected your information.
You should also rectify this problem by visiting Google Maps and clicking on the small button that drops down to reveal the Report a Problem option on the bottom. You can then request a change and inform Google that you have moved your business to another address. You must keep on monitoring the bottom of the page that may display the location from where Google is retrieving your old address since you will need to update your information on those websites too.
For instance, if your old address has been retrieved from sites such as Localeze, Inforgroup, or Acxicom or all three then you need to make sure that all these sites know about your relocation to a new address. Another important link that you need to visit is Google.com/mapmaker. Once you visit MapMaker, you need to click on Edit and change your address to the new one. You will again need to specify that you are changing your address since you have moved.
If you think that creating new listings with your new address instead of updating the old ones is a better idea then think again. You will only end up confusing visitors and clients since Google and other search engines will just index both and keep on displaying them on search results. You can use your Excel sheet to keep track of changes made and also keep on viewing Accuracy reports and search results to make sure that only your new address is displayed at all times. Even after completing all these steps, you will need to wait for around 2 to 3 months for your correct address to appear on all search results. If your website is targeted at mobile users, you will also need to make changes in Apple Maps as well as other mobile apps.
The above steps are tedious-but-necessary to ensure that all search engines realize that you have relocated to a new address and display the updated data on search results. These steps are not difficult to execute and creating an Excel sheet will help you track your progress as you identify and modify your address on each website at the earliest.