Local Guide Best Practice: The best order for suggesting edits

[This is one of a series of articles originally published on Local Guides Connect]

Sometimes you come across a point of interest (POI) where more than one data point is either incorrect or missing: no telephone number, incorrectly spelled company name, no website, pin located incorrectly, etc. As I already explained in a previous post, you should not submit all changes all at once, as this will certainly increase the chance of running into a ‘not applied’: if one of the edits is not accepted, your entire contribution will be marked as the notorious ‘not applied’ (look around a bit on this forum to find out how much frustration this is causing).

But then another question can be raised: does it matter in which order to suggest the edits? My experience (as mentioned in the disclaimer at the bottom: pure speculation, I have no hard evidence for any of this) suggests: yes, it does. Two different factors might be at play here. The first is reputation, a topic already discussed in a previous post. Just as you can build up a reputation for certain types of edits, you possibly also increase your chance of getting an edit approved for a POI if other edits you made for that same POI were already approved. So: submit the types of edits for which you have an excellent track record before the ones where you have less experience.

The second factor is the different ‘weight’ Google seems to be giving the different types of data points. Some are almost always approved within seconds by the algorithms, others almost always go into ‘pending’ and need to be reviewed. To make that more specific: my suggested pin location changes have almost never been rejected, even when I was at much lower Local Guide levels, and even when working on the desktop version (so: without GPS indication that I was near the actual location). At one point I came across a little hobby-shop that had apparently moved to another town over 100 km away, but where a combination of the info on Maps (where then new address was already showing), Street View images and company info on the website (e.g. still the same mobile phone number) made it clear that this was actually the same shop at a completely new location. When I moved the pin to the new location (not an easy task… multiple zoom out / scroll / zoom out steps were needed), it was – somewhat to my surprise – approved within seconds. (I have no idea what would happen if you suggest to move a pin to an obviously incorrect location, like the middle of the ocean – and I’m not going to try to find that out… reputation, remember?)

On the other end of the ‘weight’ spectrum are websites. Those usually will need to be reviewed, unless the URL is a main page referring very clearly to the POI name (e.g. ‘www.fake_example_shop.de’ for a shop somewhere in Germany called ‘Fake Example Shop’ and not something like ‘www.germanshops.de/berlin/fake_example/shop’). Also telephone numbers can be quite hard to get approved. And with addresses and names I’ve experienced that it can make a difference if the suggested edit is a tiny one (correction of just 1 character or merely removing a superfluous legal term) or a more comprehensive one (as mentioned in detail in the post about improving your reputation).

This ‘weight’ factor is then something you can use to determine the order in which you suggest your edits for a POI: submit them one by one, and start with the ones that will get approved most easily (thereby possibly strengthening your reputation for that POI) and then proceed to the ones that are tougher.

The original article can be found here

 

Disclaimer: the practices described here as best practice are my personal interpretation, and I don’t claim any level of official endorsement.

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