Western Union Dealing In Baked Goods Now?

Western Union As Local Data Provider

Well, now I knew Western Union sends money around the world, but what do you think of them being a local source for Mexican baked goods?

Martijn Beijk and I are collaborating on a project (soon to be published here on the SEOigloo Blog) and while doing research for this, I came across the above results. I had never seen Western Union as a data source before, and unlike instances in which something like a specific Yelp URL is being cited as home base for a business that doesn’t have a website, the links in the 10-pack go right to the Western Union homepage. There are, needless to say, no mentions of bakeries on that page.

I’m not seeing this as a very meaningful addition to the usefulness of the user experience with the 10-pack. I’d be interested to know:

1) If you’ve come across Western Union as a data source for Google Maps before, and if so, where these citations are actually coming from.

2) If you think the inclusion of URLs in the 10-pack layout improves the user experience, and if so, how.

Cre8asite Forums’ Mod, Donna Swain, has just sent me this Panaderia-related screenshot from this Google Maps search:

Local Bakery

Look at the food inspections of this bakery acting as citations for this business! Has Donna discovered a reason, at last, for food service workers to cheer when the health inspector comes calling?

The plus side here is what I am assuming Google considers a very authoritative citation of this business from the Environmental Health Division.

The not-so-plus side is the fact that…well…this is a health inspection being given all the prominence of a shiny user review. The business in question had 2 (albeit minor) violations. We may just have entered a new era in reputation management. Thanks for the tip, Donna, and I’m interested in hearing any and all thoughts on the various topics in this post!

4 Responses to “Western Union Dealing In Baked Goods Now?”

  1. on 10 Feb 2009 at 12:14 pm Mike Blumenthal

    Hi Miriam

    I am a little behind on my reading so I am late on this one…but better late than never…

    Google assigns URL whenever it is has some confidence, the question is what gives them the confidence.

    This search on Google: “Panaderia Michoacan 2″ Western Union turned up a couple of possibilities….

    One of the most likely is the Yellow Bot Page that has a very large tag of “Wester Union” associated with the Panaderia Michoacan.


  2. on 10 Feb 2009 at 2:56 pm admin

    Oh, good find, Mike! Looks, indeed, like that may be it.

    I had a fellow from Yellowbot stop by here a couple of weeks ago in relation to the Maya Palenque problem, and Yellowbot had the wrong URL for the business (as did Google). This information seems to be creating a strong case for Google’s reliance on Yellowbot. I need to learn more about them…I really haven’t paid attention to Yellowbot.

    Thanks for the research and the findings.


  3. on 11 Feb 2009 at 3:15 pm emad

    Hi Miriam,

    You (and anyone else here) are welcome to contact me about YellowBot (or stop by our offices if you’re in Los Angeles) if you’re interested. An open invitation to all :-)

    emad – at – fano – dot – us


  4. on 11 Feb 2009 at 3:57 pm admin

    Thank you for the invitation, Emad. Very kind of you. I would like to learn more about Yellowbot. I don’t have any specific questions right now, but I will surely take you up on your offer if I think of something. Thanks!


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