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How Duplicate Listings Can Destroy Your Online Visibility

Duplicate Listing

Last Updated on: 23rd April 2024, 12:25 pm

In the digital age, the visibility of your business online is pivotal to success. A recent conversation with Dean, a potential member who experienced significant issues with online listings, underscores the damaging impact of duplicate listings. This discussion reveals the complexities of online marketing and the pitfalls that can drastically affect a business’s online presence.

The Perils of Duplicate Listings

Duplicate listings occur when a business is listed multiple times on the same platform or across different platforms with varying information. This scenario can happen for various reasons, often stemming from the use of multiple listing services like Birdeye, Yext, Bright Local, and others. Dean’s business, like many others, fell into this trap, leading to a confusing digital footprint.

When multiple listings of the same business appear, it confuses search engines and local SEO algorithms. Instead of consolidating the strength of a single, accurate listing, the presence is fragmented. This dilution can result in lower search rankings and reduced online visibility. Essentially, instead of reinforcing a unified brand presence, duplicate listings compete against each other, confusing potential customers and search algorithms alike.

Understanding Listings and Their Impact

Listings are essentially any entry of a business on an online platform, such as Google Maps or Apple Maps. These entries include vital business details like the name, address, phone number, and services offered. Ideally, a listing should be unique and accurate to ensure that when customers search for a business, they get reliable results.

Unfortunately, businesses that unintentionally create multiple listings often find that none of their profiles are complete or entirely accurate. This inconsistency not only harms search engine optimization (SEO) but also affects customer trust and business reputation. Incorrect or outdated information leads to poor customer experiences, affecting sales and brand perception.

The Algorithmic Confusion

Search engines aim to provide the most relevant and accurate information to users. When duplicates exist, algorithms struggle to determine which listing is correct, often leading to none of the listings appearing in top search results. Moreover, the situation complicates voice search and citation accuracy, which are increasingly important in a mobile-first world where quick and reliable information is paramount.

In discussions with businesses, frequent complaints arise about the ongoing creation of duplicate listings despite efforts to manage their online presence. This issue is exacerbated by the automated systems of large listing services that sometimes prioritize quantity over quality without adequate checks and balances.

The Solution: Manual Oversight and Integrated Platforms

To combat the issue of duplicate listings, it is crucial to have a robust system in place that involves manual checking and integration across all platforms where the business is listed. The platform discussed by Dean, which he eventually chose to adopt, does exactly that. By starting from scratch and building a platform designed to avoid the creation of duplicate listings, the approach integrates manual oversight with automated processes.

This method ensures that even if a duplicate is detected, the system flags it for human review, allowing business owners to address the issue directly. This hands-on approach prevents the algorithm from making erroneous decisions that could lead to further complications.

Why Small Business Owners Should Care

For small business owners, the impact of duplicate listings is even more significant. These businesses typically do not have the vast marketing resources of larger companies and rely heavily on local SEO and accurate listings for foot traffic and local customer engagement. When duplicates exist, they rob these small businesses of potential sales and visibility, which are crucial for survival and growth.


The conversation with Dean serves as a vital lesson for all business owners about the importance of managing online listings diligently. It is not just about being present online but being correctly and uniquely visible. With the right tools and a proactive approach, businesses can safeguard their online presence, enhance their SEO, and ensure they stand out in the crowded digital marketplace.

To business owners grappling with duplicate listings, consider reaching out for professional help or adopting a platform that prioritizes accuracy and human oversight. Your online visibility is too crucial to leave to chance.

About the author:

Picture of Rob Downey

Rob Downey

Robert Downey: Revolutionizing Local Marketing and Voice Search Optimization Robert Downey is a distinguished figure in the dynamic world of local marketing and digital innovation. As the co-founder of, he has proven to be a master in local marketing strategy and a pioneer in voice search optimization. With a career spanning nearly three decades, Robert has dedicated himself to enhancing the visibility of small businesses and fostering stronger connections between these enterprises and their local communities. Robert's journey in the marketing realm began in 1995, and since then, he has led over 1,000 marketing campaigns, contributing significantly to developing more than 5,000 websites. His expertise spans various industries, equipping him with a nuanced understanding of their unique challenges and opportunities. This extensive experience broadens his skill set and cements his position as a thought leader in local business marketing. One of the keys to Robert's success is his ability to deliver impactful results using local SEO strategies. He excels in this area, demonstrating that businesses can use small advertising budgets to be successful. Instead, they need the right strategies to reach consumers actively seeking their services. His approach needs to include the importance of bridging the gap between local businesses and potential customers, which has often hindered the growth and visibility of many small businesses. As a fourth-generation entrepreneur, the entrepreneurial spirit runs deep in Robert's veins. This heritage has ingrained in him a profound understanding of business growth and evolution, especially crucial in the fast-paced startup environment. At, he applies this strategic vision to simplify the local business discovery process, leading to significant growth of the platform, an expanded user base, and increased revenue streams. Beyond Simply Be Found, Robert's achievements include launching over ten successful online businesses and startups, a testament to his versatility and expertise in the digital business landscape. He brings a unique blend of programming skills, marketing acumen, and business development experience, offering a fresh and invaluable perspective to today's digitally-centered business challenges. In essence, Robert Downey is more than just a local marketing expert. He is a catalyst for growth, a digital marketing innovator, and a mentor to businesses striving for success. His extensive experience, profound industry knowledge, and unwavering dedication to the success of small businesses make him an indispensable ally for any business aiming to enhance its local presence and achieve sustainable growth.

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