Optimizing your listings on Google Places has the power to seriously boost your businesses rankings and get you to the top of the local search results.

But there are some elements, if implemented incorrectly, which could do more harm than good for your business when it comes to Google Places. Here are just a few Google Places listing tactics that might actually hurt your local rankings instead of help them, and what you should be doing instead:

Having Multiple Locations on a Single Google Places Page

Providing information for more than one of your locations can cause confusion for customers and for Google crawlers. Multiple locations should be listed, not on the same page, but on individual landing pages created for each specific location or city.

Also keep in mind that each of these pages should have a specific business title to go with it to avoid confusion and help Google share the right location in the relevant local results.

Having No Locations on a Google Places Page

This is a big “Don’t.” As a local business, one of the most important things you can do to enhance your Local SEO is have your information where customers, and crawlers, can see it—both on your site, and on your Google Places listings. Don’t hurt your rankings, and lose business, by putting a PO Box instead of a concrete address, by hiding your address, or by failing to put a location at all.

Providing Only (800) Phone Numbers

An 800 number isn’t necessarily going to affect your rankings, but it’s better safe than sorry to avoid using numbers like this when you’re looking to top the local rankings. Instead, Google suggests putting a local phone number on your listings when at all possible.

Having Numerous Negative Reviews

Being the victim of a number of negative reviews can do more than just hurt your rankings. It can also cause a decrease in your click-through rate and cause concern even amongst current customers. For some industries, especially those like restaurants and hotels, negative reviews are even more influential.

In order to turn things around and boost your rankings, try drowning out negative content and promoting positive reviews by making it easy for happy customers to share their experiences on review platforms all over the web.

Adding Local Keywords to your Google Places Categories

When you submit your listing to Google Places, your business is able to specify categories to help searchers and Google categorize your business. Adding location-specific keywords to your categories however, (Think: “Hair Salon Seattle” or “Auto Repairman Detroit”), isn’t allowed under Google’s guidelines. Tactics like this can run a high risk of being penalized by Google and can lead to a serious drop in your rankings.