Monday, June 28, 2010

My Beef With Google ... (Updated 07/11/10) ...

Update: Google has meanwhile fixed the problem, which is why below map does not display the problem anymore.

Google is omnipresent in my internet life. My browser home page is Google, this blog site is owned by Google, I use Google Docs, and various other nifty applications Google offers, for free. I love Google, and I think it's the best thing that happened to the internet world since the start of the World Wide Web.

However, right now I have a problem with Google: It is losing us money!

The problem is that Google Maps is a widely used application to locate places and get directions (I use it all the time), but it has our location wrong, by a whopping four miles!!! Here is a map of where Gunk Haus is (marker A) and where Google thinks it is (marker B).

This is a big deal to us! I have heard from several people already that they couldn't find us, because they looked us up on Google Maps, but you can assume the number of people who don't tell us is substantially larger.

Of course Google allows you to notify them of a problem, and I did so twice already, and I was told twice that I am right, but being right doesn't bring guests to our restaurant.

The next complaint I have is with Facebook, which I also use extensively. Initially I had posted our address there, but then I found out that they turn the address into, wait for it, a Google Maps link.

I can assure you, we are pretty upset about this, and the thought of legal action has crossed my mind, just to get someone's attention (Google doesn't have live customer service, because it costs money; gee, tell me about it, I have wait staff taking orders and delivering food, being there for our guests if things aren't right).



Andrew said...

Dirk, on the left side of Facebook, under the Information section, can you add a link to the correct directions in Mapquest instead?

Anonymous said...

What if you use Clintondale instead of Highland. When I googled your address using Clintondale, Google got it right.

Rick Ness said...

I just googled "gunk haus near 12515" and it was correct. Also "gunk haus near highland, ny" results were correct also, however there are two "pins" on the map, A and B and both on top of each other at the right spot, like you have two entries in Google's index now. Also, in the search results for "gunk haus near highland, ny" was a link to a restaurant review website. Their address listing says "387 South St, Highland, NY 12528" and the resulting Google map on their page is wrong. And of course, if someone searches that specific address it will come up at Milton Turnpike because that's where that (incorrect) Highland address is.

Gunk Haus said...

Rick, I managed to trick Google, at least partly, by manually placing markers at our correct address. So, if you search for just "Gunk Haus" on Google Maps, you will find the correct location, but the actual address of "387 South St", which is what most people use, will send you into the woods.

Rick Ness said...

That is a strange mix of results. Is your address really Highland, NY per the post office? If you search 387 South St Highland, yes it does send you to Milton Tpke. If you search 387 South St, Clintondale, Ny, it gives ANOTHER wrong location, though it's closer to you between 44-55 and Mill st. Then searching for "gunk haus near clintondale, ny (or highland)" which is how I would search if I didn't know where something is gives the Highland address but the correct location! What a mess! Using instead of Google, searching the Highland address gives the right location. UGH.

Anonymous said...

So what is your actual address then? So people can get it right.

Gunk Haus said...

Anonymous, our address is

387 South St
Highland, NY 12528

as is shown at the Contact menu page above.

Anonymous said...

Maybe go to the wrong location that Google Maps sends you to and put up a sign there that says "LOOKING FOR GUNK HAUS?" and has directions to your restaurant :-)