Monday, February 15, 2021

Google Messing Up Website Links

For those of you who don't know, I also have a home inspection service called Seacliff Inspections. I got an interesting (and angry) phone call from a competing home inspector a couple of days ago. Apparently, Google has messed up our website links somehow. Or, at least that is what I have figured out. Seems that if a Google search is done for "windsor home inspector" a number of websites are displayed on a Google map, which is normal. However, three of the inspection companies listed have all their right contact information except for the website. It lists my website.

The home inspector that called me seems to think that I have done something to make Google list my website instead of his. At this point I should state that I have not, nor ever, created any links to my site with any competitor's name. The closest I can figure out what has happened is this. In order to assure visitors to my site that I offer the best home inspection service available, I created a page listing all my competitors in the area. The page lists their name, physical address, phone number and website address. Here's what I think is happening. Because my site gets more traffic (I believe so at least), Google is picking up the competitors names from my listing and inserting my website address instead of theirs. I think this may also be happening because these competitors do not have websites of their own, only a Google business listing. These sites may also be using a free service to host their websites and don't really have a domain name of their own; they could be using a sub-domain of another site.

Interesting thing here that is happening. This angry home inspector is threatening to sue. As far as I can see, I haven't done anything unethical at all. Google is the one that messed up the links. Only way I can see to resolve the confusion is to remove the web page I have listing competitors and wait to see if Google fixes itself.

Has anyone else seen anything like this? If so, I'd be interested to hear.

Seacliff Inspections
Windsor Home Inspector
Chatham Home Inspector
Leamington Home Inspector

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