Facebook Places – Where are they?

What do a popular Anaheim florist, a prominent law office in a large urban area, a rural web development firm and a large retail bank/atm location all have in common?

They all are in the Localeze index and yet Facebook Places does not know about their existence. Why this occurs and how many businesses are missing from FB Places isn’t totally clear. Given my experience, the phenomena is fairly widespread and affects some significant number of businesses in the U.S. in both rural and urban environments.

Indications are that Localeze has provided Facebook with a full data set of their index so they seem to be off the hook. Either Facebook has chosen to surface some businesses and not others or more likely, they are still struggling with the technology to match a mobile user with the many Places that are in a mobile user’s immediate vicinity.

Regardless it means that every business needs to get their hands on a mobile phone and verify whether Facebook finds your Place and if not struggle through the mobile interface to add your Facebook Place page.

I am trying to understand why this is happening so if you have insight into either Facebook’s technology, their policies, or  the limits and difficulties of coding for check-ins and can shed light on this phenomena, I would love to hear from you.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Facebook Places - Where are they? by

13 thoughts on “Facebook Places – Where are they?”

  1. Very interesting phenomenon, with the Facebook following being so huge, it’s important that businesses have a presence in it. I too am very curious to know what/how Facebook makes their decisions on this.

  2. Thanks for the info. Just looked and had to add my place.

    Just go to Places in Facebook (I did it on my phone) and click on your name to find out where you are located. If your business isn’t listed then you can type it in a search box. If it says it doesn’t have it there is an ‘add’ button to the left of the search box.

  3. dunno either Mike…am still checking clients but it looks like only 3 outta 6 are “in” FB Places….

    I wonder what criteria FB used…and even more on how we can find that out…sigh….

    ???

    Jim

  4. Sorry to be off topic, but I’ve noticed some interesting things going on in Google Places today that I thought I’d share. Looks like there is now an edit source for listings with edits that have or have not been verified. Here’s a few examples I’ve found in the wild (does anyone have a clue what these mean?)

    Added on Aug 23, 2010 2:55pm
    Edit Source : Bot, Sesame, Trusted

    Tag removed on Sep 1, 2010 6:08pm by Google Moderator Anderson
    phoneedit

  5. None of my company’s 13 locations were listed on FB places even though they are all listed in Localeze. No clue as to why though, sorry.

  6. @Nick
    I am not yet sure that it is a decision or a technical flaw…hoping to find that out.

    @Kelly
    Yes adding it is not difficult IF you have a cell phone :)

    @Jim

    I think it more likely a technical limitation than a policy but I am not yet positive.

    @Matt
    Could you be a bit more specific what you are seeing where?

    @Micaheath
    The problem is widespread. It is not clear how deeply it goes. IE It is not yet clear what % of Localeze listings didn’t make it in.

  7. @GreG
    Actually you can log into FB Places from a desktop at touch.facebook.com, there is some limited functionality though…

  8. The issue may in deed, at least in part reside with Localeze. I first noticed incorrect data on specific publishers which whom they partner more than a year ago. At that point I began a more precise test and review and I have found two major issues. One, modifications either don’t override existing data or two, complete records fail to activate within their distribution network. Now, in all fairness, maybe a publisher uses more than one source and where they might require multiple sources for reaffirmation. But I think it’s up to Localeze to come forth and address the issue. In the meantime, I have simply stopped using them as a vendor.

  9. FB’s process to claim your business place is more stringent than any I’ve encountered so far. They require some sort of official document proving that the business is legit.

  10. @James

    It is definitely the most stringent I have come across as well, but I actually like this quite a bit. It will help keep the spam and fake businesses out. Thus making FB Places a very reliable source for users of business information, this will definitely give them a leg up over Google.

  11. @jennifer

    Could be a number of reasons. People do it in Google places to service and show up in areas that they are not actually located, national business’s trying to create a local presence, whatever intention these spammers have, it’s nice to see FB putting things in place to try and keep it from happening!

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