HTR recently became aware of an edge case related to the mapping of country codes to regions that was introduced along with the deployment of the Poseidon Algorithm update that we are working on a patch for that will be deployed in the next couple of days (expected go live week of 11/22).
- Impact: Minor. Impacted only select countries and select reviews. Some companies may have experienced slightly deflated region and country bonuses if they had reviews from select countries that had mapping issues when the user selected their location via the Google Places API.
- Issue: Edge case identified where certain country codes were not mapped properly to their region and/or country as it pertains to the calculation in the HT Score algorithm related to global reach bonuses.
HTR typically pulls country data from the popular Google Places API (excluding mainland China reviews); however, a select group of countries and regions were found to be “unmatched” in the lookup function causing some vendors to experience artificially deflated country counts in their HTScore indexes.
Which countries were identified to have potential mapping issues?
Below is a list of countries that had anomalous entries in the database and were updated in the lookup function. One such example is that 517 reviews in the database were classified as originating in ‘Czechia’ while the HTScore algorithm lookup function was searching for the term “Czech Republic” as defined by the Google Places API.
Please note that only a fraction of cases were impacted by these mapping issues in these countries so just because a country is listed does not mean all reviews from that country were not mapped correctly.
List of impacted regions:
- 'Virgin Islands
- 'United States of America'
- 'United Kingdom'
- 'Turks and Caicos Islands'
- 'Saint Martin (French part)'
- 'Saint Barthélemy'
- 'Russian Federation'
- 'Netherlands Antilles'
- 'Czech Republic'
- 'Congo (Kinshasa)'
- 'Brunei Darussalam'
- 'United Arab Emirates'
Who was impacted and what was the impact?
Most vendors will not notice any difference in their scores or the scores of other products in their categories. That said, vendors with reviews from the following countries MAY have been impacted; however, not necessarily as these were anomalies and in many cases the review countries were properly classified. Impacted vendors may have experienced an increase in countries and regions served which would in many cases increase HTScores from understated scores previously visible on the platform. These changes are extremely rare and likely unnoticeable but some vendors may notice a several point increase in scores as the algorithm begins detecting their accurate country and region counts once the mapping patch goes live.