Google My Business (GMB) is essential for many businesses who want to be found online. According to a recent Moz report, your BMG page is the biggest factor for local rankings. It also functions as a website now, with customer reviews, visuals and content that make it possible for people to learn about you without having to head over to your website.
At the same time, Google My Business is not perfect. It can often struggle with businesses that fail to fall into the two most common categories which are:
- Storefronts where customers come to a permanent business location
- Service area businesses, where the business comes to the customer
Issues that prevent Google from providing an accurate GMB Listing
The first is related to claiming the listing. For many businesses, Google must send the business a postcard with a pin number that will verify the businesses existence at a location. However, pop-up stores will usually lack a permanent location for Google to send the cards. The business may be at the location for less than a week, which doesn’t give the postcard enough time to reach the temporary address.
Secondly, verification is an issue, particularly to how pop-up stores manage their listings. For example, what happens if you create a GMB listing, then move from location to location? Will the old location get marked as permanently closed? If so, the classification can imply you are no longer in business. The verification postcard causes trouble again here.
No winners today
Due to this quirk in Google’s approach, pop-up stores are often beyond the reach of GMB. Their customers must rely on word of mouth or social media in order to find them. But this could mean a loss for many people. The store could lose potential customers, Google loses traffic to social media and customers may lose as it will be harder to find the store. As Google Maps and Waze pull data from GMB listings, those popular apps cannot offer accurate directions to these types of stores.
Google has good reason to verify businesses the way it does. Service area businesses need considerate vetting, and it is important for Google to ensure that the company can be contacted, reviewed and verified. There are many checkpoints to tick off in order to do this, but it can mean that certain businesses may slip through the cracks.
Luckily, Google has been working hard to find a solution to this issue. Though we may have not yet resolved the problem, we can see that Google is flexible and willing to evolve to meet the needs of its users. As more companies adopt business models instead of permanent solutions, we are waiting for Google to adapt.
Ready for anything with Search and More
Keeping up with Google trends and changes can be challenging, especially for smaller businesses that don’t have an SEO team. This is where Search and More comes in. We’re here to assist with all elements that can boost your business online. Get in touch to find out more.