How can I get Google to fix identical addresses?
October 30, 2014 10:12 AM   Subscribe

My home address has the exact same address as a location in my same zip code. Google's default result for the search is the other address. Can I get this fixed? How?

My address is 1234 Main Street, Anytown, PA, 12345 and that is the exact same address as a factory about a mile from me. Enter the address in Google, and they default to the factory. So people can't find my house, but for some reason I also get semi-trucks trolling around my residential neighborhood looking for the factory.

The town name is the same because the zip code is the same. They're actually in a different town, but that neighborhood of that town is named after my town, if that makes sense. I don't want to go about changing my street name. How do I get google and/or the post office to rectify this somehow?
posted by stupidsexyFlanders to Law & Government (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Can you change your house number at least? If the correct mailing addresses are the same, I don't know how Google or any other address search service could differentiate between the two.
posted by Rock Steady at 10:17 AM on October 30, 2014

Response by poster: I need to clarify this with something that might be important. There actually IS NO 1234 Main Street address at the faactory. The business location just takes up so much space on that street that Google is assuming that 1234 is on that block, and just randomly points to a place on that street in front of the factory. But the actual address of the factory is 1500 Main Street.
posted by stupidsexyFlanders at 10:18 AM on October 30, 2014

When you search for your address in Google Maps, then there should be a small question mark bubble in the lower right corner of the screen. Click that and a window will pop up with options including "report a data problem". This will open a feedback box that includes the option "Marker is incorrectly placed on map".
posted by the agents of KAOS at 10:23 AM on October 30, 2014 [11 favorites]

Many times when I've been able to change information, I clicked on the spot in question and clicked on the tiny "report a problem" link in the lower right corner. It does work but you'll have to be very explicit and may need to do it for the right and wrong location.

However, in one case I was only able to get information corrected by working with a Google contractor who was handling another one of their projects. He had high-level access and could go to bat for me. It took months but it did work. In our case, the pin for our organization was showing up almost a mile away, which meant customers were going to the wrong location, which meant we were losing business.
posted by Mo Nickels at 10:24 AM on October 30, 2014 [2 favorites]

I had this happening, in that my address 150 ABC St was marked as being about 200 yards up the road, where the actual street numbers were more like 250 ABC St. If I wanted the marker to land directly in front of my house, I could do a search for "100 ABC St." I think I clicked a "report problem" button, which might have helped. If the locations had been farther apart, I would have fussed a lot more, but really all I did was wait it out; it was fixed by 6 months later.
posted by aimedwander at 10:29 AM on October 30, 2014

The other thing that you can do is edit OpenStreetMap with the correct information. It requires more technical dexterity, but you can do it yourself without relying on a Google person to do it for you. Google uses OSM as one of its many sources, so they sometimes fix things based on that without any external spur. Do the "Report a problem" thing, too. And have other people do it. Multiple reports, multiple sources, they all help.
posted by wnissen at 11:02 AM on October 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

I have found that going through this process can be very arduous, especially if there is no mailbox/phone line at the location. To claim the property and make adjustments to the marker, you need to either have google call you with a code or mail it to THAT ADDRESS, not a new address.

That was at a previous company, and no amount of persuading could remedy the situation, until I left the company and it's still not completely fixed.
posted by bbqturtle at 1:46 PM on October 30, 2014

This is really an issue with the company - they need to engage a web marketing firm to "update their local citations" so they show up correctly on Google Maps and so on.

There are a couple of ways you can change what shows up on Google Maps, though. You can login to Google Mapmaker and fix the map yourself, leaving a lengthy explanation. And you can keep doing this until someone at Google clues in. I have gotten changes to Google Maps in 48 hours using this method.

There is also a back door way of actually phone up the Google Maps (actually G+ for Business) team, and they can fix things on the spot. If you are interested MeMail me and I'll tell you how (bit of a trade secret).
posted by Nevin at 3:29 PM on October 30, 2014

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