How to remove Google autocomplete suggestions

Nadia Munno | April 1, 2013

Google’s Autocomplete suggestions is a fantastic tool for find what you want and even giving you new ideas for things you may not have thought of looking for. But but in terms of defamation and online reputation, Google autocomplete can also become your worst enemy.

google autosuggest

In the example above you can see a search for the UK bank, Halifax. At the bottom of the Google autocomplete you have ‘halifax bank scam’, which is a pretty big hit on the brand, considering autocomplete works as a suggestion.

However, if you select this link you will see that Halifax has done a great job at filling this search result with information relating to phishing scams and security suggestions for their customers.

How does Google Autocomplete work?

Google’s suggestions are built into their algorithm. It is not an SEO point, nor is it something you can outrank. The suggestions you are given are tabulated and shown based on frequency of search by other people around the world.

How to remove auto complete suggestions

Though you may have come here hoping for a solution you could do yourself from your workstation, unfortunately this is a very technical procedure. Removing Google’s autocomplete suggestions requires multiple online reputation management tools going into play at one time. This include:

  • Altering the demand for specific searches around your company/name/brand/keyword.
  • Filling the demand with new searches
  • Cleaning up results which have kept any negative autocompletes alive.

Taking Legal Action against Google

If you feel you or your company are being defamed through autocomplete itself, you can take legal action against Google (civilized legal) and get it removed. There are several cases from around the world which may give precedence to your case.

For more information on these cases, visit the Google autocomplete page at SEO Land.

Co-founder & President
Nadia is the President and co-founder of Massive Alliance. She is an international figure in reputation management and is best known for her rolodex of media influencers.