Of course, a suspended listing on Google is not a very pleasant thing, cause in the end it has a negative impact on your business performance. We simply do not want to see that such an important local marketing instrument is on pause, especially if it's absolutely not the time to reduce the possible flow of customers.
In this article, RocketData explains what can be the reasons for your Google My Business listing suspension, what should you keep an eye on, and also gives you some pieces of advice on solving this issue.
Ok, let's imagine you logged in to your GMB (Google My Business) account and see your company's listing is suspended. Whom to call and what to do?
Firstly, don't panic. Secondly, find out what kind of suspension you've faced up: the soft or the hard one.
Your business is just marked because of wrong information in a listing, for example, but it still appears in search.
Reclaim your listing from a new Google account. To perform this, you will have to complete the full verification process meeting all the required guidelines.
It's serious cause you've probably violated Google's guidelines. In this situation, your listing disappears even from Google Maps and search results. So, the customers don't see your business on Google at all.
Here, the only thing you can do is to contact Google and ask what is the reason for the suspension. Then send a local business reinstatement request and be patient, cause it can take some time.
! Do not be too insistent and do not frequent with such requests. It can lead to blacklisting your company.
Identify what could be the reasons for your Google listing suspension. Forewarned is forearmed!
The thing is that Google just wants to ensure users have reliable and relevant information about companies. Actually, it is good for businesses because such results lead to better user experiences and thus improve communication between companies and customers. That's why Google has rather strict standards which may seem hard to meet.
When Google suspends a business listing, it is a kind of response to policy violations, users complaints or any suspicious or spammy activity.
Mind that Google will tell you about the suspension but won't tell you the reasons. So, here is the list of the most common issues that can lead to the suspension:
Information in your listing has been changed. What exactly?
Primary or secondary categories
Management change or ownership transfer, especially when login locations change
Changing to a service area with a hidden address (after operating with a visible one).
Your business is referred to a high-risk industry. Here, we can mention locksmiths, plumbing, HVAC and other home services.
Your company is related to regulated services: weapons, tobacco products, alcohol, medicines, fireworks. You should be very attentive to keep the information relevant, set the right region and age restrictions.
Your address violates Google policy. Make sure to have the correct P.O. Box, virtual address, FedEx/UPS Store boxes in your listings and that you have the authority to claim that the address listed belongs to your business. Do not use: forwarding URL, forwarding phone number, multiple listings for the same business/location. Also don't create a listing for your online business.
These are the basic things you should pay attention to not to have your listing flagged and suspended on Google.
How to lift your business listing out of suspension?
After you've contacted Google My Business Support on the issue, the service may require you to submit some documents and information as proof that your business is legitimate. For example:
State business license (if required by the state)
Professional licensing (if required by law)
Proof of occupancy of location (Utility bills, Rental agreements/deeds)
Photos of the business location (visible logo, street address of the building, company vehicles with logos parked at the building
Tax identification papers
Video or phone verification
Follow Google's instructions promptly and accurately, be patient and if your business is legitimate, there will hardly be any problems with listing restoration.
And what then?
Hoorah! You got out of the suspension. But GMB is a dynamic platform, so you should constantly keep an eye on your listing to show the reliable information and reflect the changes made in your company name, phone number, offerings, location, working hours, etc. Reply to the reviews left by your customers to lessen the possibility of negative actions from their side. If the data on your GMB profile and business listing is consistent and relevant it will save you from running into the same trap.
Let's sum up
Business listing suspension is not the end of the world. It happens to any business, so all you need to do is to keep calm and good spirits and thoroughly follow all of Google's instructions.
What is important:
Make sure you have all the needed documents just in case, and all the forms on GMB are filled out without inaccuracies.
Perform regular checkups and updates to your listings to lower the risk of being suspended.
In any incomprehensible situation, contact Google My Business Support and follow their protocols.
Just three simple steps will keep your business stable in local search ranking and will save you from missing the traffic to your offline locations.
Looking to time optimization and keeping your GMB listings perfectly updated? RocketData is here for your business to keep all the information under control — book a demoto find out more.
Author: Yana Smal
Local SEO Expert, RocketData.io
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