If you are an entrepreneur and handling your business website yourself, you must be aware of the Google my business listing. Then, you being the business owner, can decide if you want to close the business or end it temporarily.
In both cases, you need to update the business status in Google My Business listing. You can either permanently close or simply delete the business from Google Map (meaning a temporary shutdown). And this is one of the most asked or discussed questions nowadays.
People who switched between businesses but still have all businesses listed on Google Maps are confused about managing their business listing of Google. It is tricky but once you understand the concept of Listing, managing your listings will not be a problem anymore for you.
It is said that 49% of businesses from the United States have received 1k views on Search per month. That’s huge.
Different industries have different search-per-month impact factors. But everyone is happy with their identification on Google Listings.
This growth is then reflected to be a 5% increase in website clicks. In a time of 1 year, i.e., Q4 2017 and Q4 2018, 38% of business searches grew with the help of Google Listings. In addition, 29% of website accessibility increased due to Google Listings.
All these statistics are super existing, but the real question is, should you display your business even when you have shut it down (either temporarily or permanently).
The second question you should be very careful of is, what if a wrong business listing is done as if someone is pretending to you and illegally reflecting your business? What to do in this case.
To avoid any suffering in your business, you need to be very careful with your Google My Business listing, and this is what we will be discussing today in this article.
Let’s dig in and understand how to erase or edit a business listing on Google.
You can use multiple scenarios, and we will be discussing many of them with examples. First, however, there are three main categories in which you can change your business listings on Google maps. Following are the details:
- You have the authority to verify an Unverified Listing in your account to control its activities.
- You can un-verify a previously verified business listing in your account, which doesn’t need to reflect any activities.
- And then comes the listings which you are interested in controlling but can’t as other people are controlling these.
These are the three main types of actions you can do with Business Listings in Google Maps. But these actions are not just limited to these three action types. These can be further split down into 5 more categories.
But, first, let’s try to understand these three main activities.
Verify the unverified Listing
It means that you are interested in controlling an unwanted listing as it is marked unverified in Google Maps. You can easily do that by following Google’s instructions for verifying a listing. However, to successfully verify this Listing, you need to ensure a couple of things:
- You don’t change anything related to the Listing (name, address, or business type) until Google sends you the verification postcard.
- Be patient with getting a code for verification. Don’t reapply.
Once you have received the postcard and the Listing has been verified, you can now enjoy the liberty of managing the Listing as per your requirement.
Unverified the previously verified business listing
Why would you be doing that? First, you need to understand that any non-operational business should be immediately unverified from your Google Map listing.
This doesn’t mean that you will be deleting your whole account. It only means that you are removing a business from Google Maps.
Why is it important? It is important to let your customers know that your business is not operational anymore to avoid any hassle.
This would also mean that you now no longer want to control that Listing in your Google business account. You can do that by simply going to your info tab in the GMB dashboard and click remove the Listing, select the Listing, click the checkbox, and hit delete account.
Once this is done, please note that now this Listing can be verified by anyone else and is available to be owned and controlled by anyone.
Listing which you are interested in owning but are already verified and controlled by others
The process of owning a verified listing that is already in control of someone else is not as complex as it sounds. It’sa rather very simple procedure consisting of a Google-defined procedure. All you need to do is to follow Google’s guide for requesting the ownership of a Business. And click request ownership.
Google will contact the owner, and if no response is received, Google will let you verify the Listing. Thus you will be the owner of that unwanted Listing verified in your name.
Let’s talk about some of the other possibilities through which you can get benefit from owning or disowning a listing on Google Maps.
Duplicate Business listing
The address is one of the most common factors in listings. And as it is directly affecting Google Maps, you need to be very clear about that. But this doesn’t mean that you can’t have more than one business outlet. They can be at two or three different places across the city.
This leads to the discussion of having a duplicate listing of your business. Of course, not every business will require a duplicate listing. But restaurants, bakeries, hospitals, and retailer-based businesses are more likely to use duplicate Listing.
Another factor in duplicate Listing is that industry that provides you services at your customers’ doorstep. Follow Google’s guide to having a service area listing in this situation.
Unwanted Listing for a Multi-Practitioner Business
Let’s assume that you are a law firm, which means you will have multiple lawyers working in your firm, and every one of them has listed them on Google Maps along with you listing your organization. Now, this is all a duplication scenario all over again.
In this scenario, what you can do is ask your employee to let you control his Listing. In case he has moved to another office or another location, then you can change the information yourself. But if in case the employee is deceased, then regretfully inform Google of the obituary and get control of that Listing.
When a Business Moves
In case you have decided to shift to a new location, just update this information on your website along with clear driving directions. Also, update your listing address in the GMB dashboard. Please avoid creating a new listing. It will only make your customer confused and will not help you in any way.
In case your business listing is marked as permanently closed, then it is advised to please unverify the Listing from Google Maps.
Fraud or Spam listing
You should always be on the lookout for fraud or spam listings. You can identify this by observing the tactics and business shifts in between your competitors. Once you have the evidence that a fraud or spam listing is affecting your business, then do the following:
- Search for this Listing on Google Maps
- And then, you have to Click the “suggest an edit” optional link
- Select and Click on “yes.”
- Scroll down and select the radio button “spam” and hit enter
- If Google finds this a fraudulent listing, you will be notified via email
Being in control of a listing or un-verifying your listed business holds the key importance for your business. Your Google business listing needs to be updated at all times to keep your customers updated with your contact details.
In case you are moving or merging or expanding or may be temporarily or permanently closing your business, your Google Listing helps you keep your customers updated. If it is updated, it will help you in growing your business rather than affecting it.
This article discussed three core listing options and a couple of other subcategories, which you can also further split into many more. But this is the baseline for optimizing local seo your small business.
Are you still confused about Google My Business Listings?
What makes you believe that outdated Listing on Google Maps will help you grow your business? It is very hard for me to believe that you are still not convinced to update your Google My Business Listing information.
But amuse me as I am interested in knowing your reason for not using Google Listing in your favor, even after reading this article.