The Proper Way To Deal with Duplicates in Google My Business [2018 Edition]

The Proper Way To Deal with Duplicates in Google My Business

There are so many different scenarios that could exist in the Google My Business (GMB) world when it comes to duplicate listings.

Why Should You Care About Duplicate Listings?

Contrary to what you might have heard, duplicate listings are no longer “ranking killers”.  They used to have a negative impact on ranking when I first started in this industry over a decade ago but currently they are mostly an issue because duplicate listings filter each other due to the Possum update so having multiple listings means that they are competing for the same spot and Google might choose the one you want to show to the user.

The most common use case I see for why duplicate listings are problematic is when Google is ranking one listing that is pretty blank and has no reviews and is filtering out the listing that has tons of reviews and other Knowledge Panel features.  Although you’d still rank, the loss of reviews on the listing could have a negative impact on how many potential customers actually call you.

Before doing anything listed below, always make sure you check both listings to see if there are reviews that need to be moved.

 

Listings for Businesses at Physical Locations (Have Storefronts):

2 Listings for the same business at the same address:

  • If they are both verified, and you are the owner of both, you need to unverify the listing you want to merge.  Google My Business cannot merge 2 verified listings.
  • If they are both verified and you only have ownership of one, you will first need to get ownership of both before they can be merged. To start this process, try and claim the listing you do not have control over and it will prompt you on how you can get control from the existing owner.
  • If only one is verified, go into Google Maps and get the URL for both the verified and the unverified one and write them down (save this somewhere). Reach out to Google My Business and ask them to merge the 2.

2 Listings for the same business at different addresses:

  • If the incorrect address is an old address of the business (they were there at some point in time):
    • Contact Google My Business through Twitter Support (@googlemybiz) and ask them to mark the old listing as moved.
  • If the incorrect address is one that the business has never existed at:
    • Go into Google Maps, select “Suggest an Edit”, switch the toggle beside “Place is permanently closed” to “yes”, select “Never Existed” as the reason, and press submit.  *Note: if there are reviews on the listing, you should get them transferred before doing this.

 

Listings for Service Area Businesses (SAB)s Without Storefronts:

2 Listings for the same business at the same address or different addresses

  • If they are both verified, you will first need to contact Google My Business (GMB) to get ownership of both before they can be merged. The GMB team will have to merge the 2 for you.
  • If only one is verified, go into Google Maps and pull up the unverified listing.  Select “Suggest an Edit”, switch the toggle beside “Place is permanently closed” to “yes”, select “Private” as the reason, and press submit. *Note: if there are reviews on the listing, you should get them transferred before doing this
  • *Important Note: Unverified listings for SABs should never be marked closed, they should always be removed since they are for private addresses (home addresses) which are not allowed on the map unless they are verified through Google My Business

Listings for Professionals/Practitioners

  • Public-Facing professionals (doctors, lawyers, dentists, realtors etc) are allowed their own listings separate from the office they work for unless they are the only public-facing professional at that office. In that case, there should only be one listing formatted as “Business Name: Professional Name”
  • If you find an unverified listing for a public-facing professional who no longer works at your location but did at some point, you need to contact GMB to get the listing updated if the person now works elsewhere.  For professional/practitioner listings, the real owner of the listing is the individual, not the company they work for.  Therefore, you cannot transfer reviews or other information from a practitioner listing to the practice listing.
  • If a listing exists for an employee who is not public-facing (ex: a hygienist, nurse, or paralegal) or someone who never worked at that address, you should go into Google Maps, select “Suggest an Edit”, switch the toggle beside “Place is permanently closed” to “yes”, and select “Never Existed”.

What’s the Difference Between a Merge and a Move?

A merge is when Google takes 2 listings and mashes them together.  They usually default to this when the addresses & names on the listings are the same.

A move is when Google takes a listing and points it to another listing, like a 302 redirect.  Doing this causes the first listing to vanish from the search results.

If you’re looking for more information about how to find and report duplicate listings, my advanced Local SEO training currently has 22 pages on this topic.  If you want to get a sneak peek at what type of content is in the guide, you can download a free sample here.

Did I miss any scenarios you have come across? Tell me about it in the comments.

 

132 replies on "The Proper Way To Deal with Duplicates in Google My Business"

    1. The ironic thing is that calling GMB is actually my last resort. I only listed it as the preferred method for instances where both listings are verified OR if you’re dealing with 1 verified listing + an unverified closed listing (in which case GMB’s method is better for ranking than MapMaker’s method).

      Personally, I’ve found dealing with duplicates within MapMaker as the best option for most cases.

      1. Hi Joy

        Please could you help me? My name is David I own Home2sell Estate agents in belper derby DE56 1FZ in the Uk. On the 22nd of August 2017 we disappeared from google maps. When you type in “estate agents Belper” we no longer exist. When you go into google maps and scroll down we then appear. But this is now costing me alot business. We have been in business 15 years and always appeared before. Please could you help?

        1. Hey David,

          I’d suggest hiring a Local SEO company in the UK to do an audit/analysis to see what happened. I only do consultations for businesses in the US & Canada, unfortunately. I would recommend Tim Capper who is another Google My Business Top Contributor (and he’s in the UK). His website is here: onlineownership.com

  1. I had problems because Google did not recognise that a company with Pty Ltd or P/L ending were the same company not 2 companies. My new address was still being listed in my old address on Google Maps. That was fixed by calling Google. Also Google wanted to delete Google+ personal account of myself where I said I worked for my own business andkeep only the business listing not my personal listing on Google+ which I blocked. I am still waiting to see if I can add a category to my business without having to close my Google+ account for myself. This is extreme for 1 person companies like mine.

  2. run a therapy business from two different locations, based from rooms I rent at private clinics. The clinics both have several therapists working from that address. I myself have several ‘brands, so to speak, offering different services to clients with different needs, for example a stop smoking service, a weight loss service, etc… all from the same address. I have created a Google+ Brand page for each of these, and Google+ Location page for each. The reason I want them separate is that the therapies and approaches are not related. They are different techniques that are not necessarily related, and are marketed differently to different audiences. I would like to make sure that I will not be penalised for having several ‘businesses’ running form the same address details. Can someone please advise or point me in the right direction for policy? Many thanks

    1. John,
      That’s tricky because from the sounds of it you are not eligible for separate pages. If you really wanted to separate it you could set up professional listings for each of the therapists but this is not generally a good practice if you want to rank well in the 3-pack (more listings is rarely better). I would defer to the quality guidelines: https://support.google.com/business/answer/3038177?hl=en.

  3. This has been helpful. Thanks Joy. How would you recommend proceeding if:
    If there are to GMB accounts for a business with a physical location, but only 1 is verified, and only 1 listing shows up in Map Maker?

    Is it safe to ignore this…?

    1. Hey Reid,
      I’m not really sure what you’re describing is possible unless one is a Brand page or you have your address hidden. Would you be able to list the 2 pages?

  4. Thanks for the post Joy.
    Here’s my issue – I’ve got a Google Business page (call it PageA) that is verified, has about 100 followers and connected to my youtube channel. However it doesn’t show in the map results.
    Another Google Business page for my company (call it PageB) shows up very high in the map results – and I’ve just claimed ownership and awaiting the verification card. However this page has no followers and is not connected to my youtube channel.

    Once verified do I:
    a) keep both pages
    b) Make PageA a duplicate, remove it, lose followers and connect my youtube channel to PageB
    c) Make PageB (the one that is good in the map results) a duplicate, remove it – and hope PageA starts showing well in the map results.

    If you have any advice on this would be appreciated.

  5. google has made this easier now. create a store code for each within the google my business center. no need to call anymore

  6. Hi Joy, can you share how to handle if you do in fact have multiple businesses at the same address?

    1. Robert,

      It’s okay for there to be multiple businesses at the same address. You often find Starbucks inside Target, for example. When it becomes very problematic is when they are a similar type of business. You wouldn’t want the business categories they are using to be related at all.

  7. Awesome article but question. My competitor who runs a face painting business as a service she doesn’t have a brick and motor. The catch is she currently created multiple business pages on Google. She used her 3 friends addresses 1) doctor office, 2. Amusement office, 3) friend location.

    Her pages has the same number on all of them, but hides the address and changed her business name on each page. Nky and Cincinnati face painting , balloons and face painting Cincinnati, fabulous faces, henna art Cincinnati.

    Is it against Google guidelines to do this? Even her links are different on the Google page but redirects to her main page.

    Thanks

    1. Yes this is definitely against Google’s guidelines. She is only 1 business and is only allowed 1 page.

  8. Hi Joy!

    I’m a little bit confused with the practitioner profiles. I have an active listing for the business, then i found a practitioner profile for the business owner (not verified).

    He’s not the only lawyer at the firm, so i’m assuming GMB team won’t merge or remove the practitioner profile for me.

    Talking about ranking, will this be an issue?

    1. Erkan,

      Yes, the GMB forum is another awesome way to get help. Part of why I’m a Top Contributor over there 🙂

  9. This is a very thorough and informative article. We have contacted google today and hope that our google maps nightmare will now come to an end. Thank you so much for this updated article. There are so many dated article that really offer no help at all. It’s amazing how google does not give more credibility to articles written more recently.

  10. Thanks for the update Joy, but I recently tried to get a retired dentist listing moved to the new practice that took over but googlemybiz twitter support refused, saying that if he doesn’t work there, they won’t move it.

    I’m guessing twitter support is now run by the former phone support “specialists” 🙂

    1. Tony,

      Can you clarify what you mean by the “new practice”. In the examples I’ve done, it was a retired practitioner and we moved it to the practice that he worked for before he retired (and no longer did).

  11. The “new practice” bought the old one and kept same phone#/address, but changed the name. Even had the old domain forward to the new one. When you search the old name, the new practice shows in the knowledge panel.

    But when you search the old dr + city, the knowledge panel shows “old practice:old dr” listing. That’s the listing I was trying to get moved, which Google refused.

    In this case, I don’t think it’s hurting his ranking (which is lousy, but for other reasons), so I don’t know that it’s a big deal. They’re just hoping to catch old patients that may want to reconnect. I believe he retired 3 years ago, but if it were more recent I might be worried.

    So I guess this doesn’t exactly fit the scenarios you talked about. I was just surprised they wouldn’t mark it as moved. I suppose the “exception” they made in your example is easier to justify than the “exception” I was hoping for.

    1. That one is tricky! Did the old practice have its own listing or did you claim it and update it to have the new practice info?

    1. Duplicates don’t get deleted, they get merged. You can get it accomplished faster by calling GMB. Reporting via MapMaker generally means you are waiting 4-10 weeks.

  12. Hello I manage more than one rental apartment in the same building. My competitors also have rental apartments in the same building. Mine are owned by different people and are very different (a 12-person luxury penthouse, and a small 4-person box). Google won’t publish the penthouse as the box is already live, and it tells me that they are duplicates. I have a total of 60 properties to rent in the same village and they are all in different locations apart from these two. Is there any way I can get the second one to show up? If I can only have one, I would rather it was the penthouse so how do i switch them? Thanks!

  13. Hi Joy, I had a duplicate listing. Deleted the oldest one and got the newest one published. Now the older listing is still popping up (1 week after deletion) and the new one with status Published is not showing. Any ideas how come?

  14. What about a service provider who changed their name and now has 2 listings. One old name, and second is correct name with formally known as?

  15. Hey Joy, I used this article as a standard for helping remove duplicate GMB’s for my clients. Since MapMaker has been removed in December, do you have any intentions of updating the post? Sharing what works now?

    1. Hey Joseph,

      Yes, I definitely am! I’ve been holding off until I see what features Google ends up adding to Google Maps. I figure they must be pushing some updates at some point in the next few weeks since MapMaker is toast in March. Once I see how that impacts things (if it does), I’ll update this post.

  16. Hi Joy,

    I’ve got a new SAB client with three claimed locations. An actual office, a mailing address nearby (with two 5 star reviews, his only ones) and a UPS box on the other side of the city (more spam!). Should I just ask GMB support to merge all three?

    1. Google cannot merge claimed listings so you’ll have to unverify 2 of them. I would unverify the mailing address and ask them to merge that one since it has reviews. For the one across town at a UPS box you can just remove it via Maps as “Doesn’t Exist”. If you want to email me the edit once you make it, I can review it.

  17. I’ve twice called Google to merge duplicate listings that were claimed and they were able to do it. However, after they were merged, in both instances, they have all but vanished from map results. Both instances were dentists where the first listing was for their actual practice and the second was for the individual doctor’s listing. Now Google states it’s okay to have separate listings for individual practitioners if more than one practitioner practices at the location, but they also state that you can merge the practitioner listing if they are the only practitioner. In both circumstances where we merged them, both were the sole practitioner and only doctor listed on the website… Curious if anyone has ever seen GMB listings basically drop out of top 5 and vanish from results completely with the above scenario?!?!

      1. Hi Joy,

        Thanks so much for the reply! The reviews moved over just fine, which was the main concern in merging the accounts. For both clients, they had reviews for the individual practitioner as well as the practice. So we wanted to just close out the practitioner and merge all of the reviews over to the office itself. That portion worked fine.

        However, once this part was complete, their listings (that used to show in top 5-10 results) disappeared for the main target keyword terms.

        Categories haven’t changed. And for one of the clients, I’ve actually narrowed his categories down to 2 from the 5 categories that were listed after the merge. I did this because he’s actually a specialty dental office that focuses only on dental implants and dentures (“dental implants – periodontist” and “denture care center” in GMB categories).

        You can take a look for yourself actually. The main target kw is “Beverly Hills Dental Implants” and the client is Secure Smiles. He was always top5 in local until the merge. Now you have to zoom in on the map in order to find his listing.

        1. So currently the listing is filtered thanks to Possum. There are a lot of dentists in that building and SO many competitors are keyword stuffing (I would suggest cleaning that up). Before you did this, which listing was ranking – the practice or the practitioner?

          1. The practice. But I believe both results were still first page. So we were going on the assumption that combining them and the reviews onto the practice would only help not hurt… Possum also would have hit before we merged these, as we started working with the client in December 2016/January 2017

        2. Did you happen to record the CID numbers for both the listings before you requested the merge?

          1. I was just going to try see if the 2 were merged properly. If you want to shoot me an email (my email is at the top of the page) with the details of the business & what keywords you noticed the drop in etc. I can take a look. I’ve never seen this before so I’m really intrigued.

  18. Hi Joy,

    My old business location was listed but not verified for a while (due to it being placed on google without me doing so) we recently moved locations (near by) and listed our new location on GMB. Logging onto my GMB account, I see 3 listings.
    1) old unverified location.
    2) new unverified location.
    3) duplicate new unverified location.

    I have reviews on the old and the new locations. I have to option to verify by phone for the old location and verify by mail on the two duplicate listing. On Google maps, It only shows two listings. Old & New location. What should I do to merge all three listing, keep my reviews and verify?

    1. I would reach out to Google My Business and ask them to mark the old unverified location as moved to the new verified one. Don’t worry about the 3rd – just delete it from your dashboard if it’s not tied to a listing on Google Maps. Also ask GMB support to move the reviews over for you.

  19. We need a street created in Google maps. Very important bc its dealing with doctors. I requested the street be created in Maps as its the only way to do so correct? And if so, how long is this going to take. I tried talking to Google support and they basically told me its not their issue.

    1. Hey BT, Sorry for the delayed response. I would suggest posting on the Google Maps forum to see if it can be escalated.

  20. We have 2 (related) businesses at the same physical address.

    I can’t seem to verify either of the businesses (postcards never arrive, even after 3 attempts). Is it because they’re listed as duplicates?

  21. Hi Joy – My client has two verified listings, same name, same address, same phone number, etc. The older one has 60+ reviews, the newer one has 2 reviews. The older one has a Google+ and YouTube page attached, and the newer one doesn’t. First choice is to somehow merge them, and keep the older one’s assets. Is this possible? If not, we just want to keep the older one. Thanks

    1. They definitely should be able to merge them. What you would want to do is contact Google My Business but be clear that you want to keep the page that is attached to YouTube. That way they can merge the newer one into the older one and not vice versa.

  22. hi you,

    I have a problem. I have 5 sales addresses wanting to confirm business display information. I have verified these addresses with google map. So how do they get together when someone searches for my brand?

    I sincerely thank you

    1. Usually when someone does a brand search, Google shows the location closest to the user that is searching. There are other things that can come into play though. If one listing has a much stronger presence online it can overpower a closer location.

  23. Hi Joy,

    Working for a doctor who started his own practice and wants to get himself listed. Been struggling because he operates out of the same building as another practice called “South Shore Surgical Specialist”, whereas his practice is “South Shore Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery”. They also use the same phone number, which goes to a receptionists desk which directs the calls. His part of the office is a different “Suite”, so tried listing it under the Suite, and adding his name to the name of the business, but no dice. Talked to GMB customer service, they had us send photos of the building indicating that we’re located in a separate suite, but still we don’t seem to meet the eligibility guidelines. Any tips? Would deleting the duplicate listing and then re-listing as a public-facing practitioner with the separate suite number help?

    Thanks so much

    1. Using the same phone number as another business is a sure way to make Google think you are the same business. I’d strongly recommend he get his own phone number if it is a separate business. Adding a suite number won’t do any good. If it’s a solo-practioner, I would suggest setting the listing up under his name. This way at least if Google thinks it is the same business, they’ll still allow it because practitioners are always allowed their own listing. Keep in mind that if they share the same categories as the other practice there is a strong chance they will get filtered in the local results, even if you get the listing up and running. More on that here: http://searchengineland.com/everything-need-know-googles-possum-algorithm-update-258900

  24. Joy this was really helpful. I could not actually find this information so clearly described anywhere else 🙂

  25. Hi Joy,

    I hope you can help me. I am working for an agency. This is with regards to my client’s GMB. To cut the story short, the ownership has been transferred to me because I unintentionally requested it. Then, gave the primary owner access back to client.

    Problem is, we cannot see her replies to the 84 reviews. Is there a way we can retrieve it? 🙁

    There is also a duplicate location seen in her account. One published and the other is not. Same address and company name. The photos, posts which she uploaded as an owner is in the unpublished duplicated location. Now the verified listing does not even have her profile pic.

    Can we combine both duplicated locations with all reviews, replies, photos, posts intact.

    Thank you!

    1. Hey Ninay,

      I would definitely reach out to Google on Twitter (@googlemybiz) and they should hopefully be able to square this away for you.

  26. Hi Joy,
    Any advice if I did not read this until AFTER I deleted the duplicate listings and did not unverified them or merge them? The one listing that had all the correct information the showed as a dup listing, still shows as the duplicate even though it is now the only listing I see. It’s only been 2 days. Do I need to wait longer before it is recognized or will I need to do something that will change it from a duplicate listing to the primary one? Thanks.

  27. Hi Joy, I created a GMB account and got the company I work at verified to the respective address with, lets say tag (A) – we call this listing 1.

    However, The search results show show my company already existing on google with a different tag (B) and I decided to claim this as my business and had it verified too. We call this listing 2. So basically under my locations, I had the same company verfied twice at the same address, website etc. So I went on and removed listing 1 with tag (A) (which I created) from my locations in GMB and decided to work with listing 2 with tag (B) the one that I claimed.

    The problem is – listing (1) shows up on search results and maps even after deleting it from my GMB list and, listing (2) shows up only when I zoom in or out of google maps (its really weird). It would be great if I could get some advise on how I can rectify this. The bottom line is I do not want Listing (1) with tag (A) showing up ever. Since I am working already with listing 2. I could also send you a screen shot of my problem and any help at this point would be great.

  28. You missed one! Two listings of two different businesses (with a similar but not identical name) on a different adress (in the same street but not identical numbers) with different phone numbers/websites/etc.. I have two of these and Google just refuses to accept they are different businesses..

    1. It makes sense that Google wouldn’t consider them to be duplicates if that much information is different.

      1. That much info is different, but they’re still marked as dupicates. Google does not respond to anything i try to send them to set this right.. How about they just add a button “this is not a duplicate”, it would make life a lot easier.

        1. If they’ve marked it as a duplicate in that scenario it’s usually because they have decided your business isn’t eligible for 2 listings.

          1. Yeah and i don’t really care what they think cause they’re wrong. But if i’ve come to lean anything about Google the last few years it’s that they don’t like to be reminded of the fact that they can be wrong. It’s clearly two different businesses, and i want them to accept this. if you’ve got any lead to get them to listen to me, i’m all ears.

  29. Hi, so if we have multiple doctors at different locations and they move around to all of the offices, can we merge them all together, or does each location have to have their own google listing? I would like them all under one listing.

    1. If a listing already exists, there isn’t a way to merge them. Google won’t merge listings that have different addresses.

  30. Not sure what to do but we have a competitor a few doors away from us who has a duplicate listing and also duplicate reviews. A review will appear on one listing and then will appear on the second listing.

    The second listing is also spamming as follows

    ‘best iPad iPhone mobile phone trusted Samsung repair shop in (town) (county) etc. As a local guide, I keep suggesting an edit and also providing feedback but it never gets resolved
    Also, I suspect that the reviews are fake as reviews have only left two reviews and both of them are on both of there listings

    What can I do please?

  31. I work for a dental office that has two physical locations with three practicing dentists. Somehow over the years they have collected 8 different Google listings. Should I try to merge all into one listing or one listing per location? Keep separate listings for the separate doctors?

    1. You won’t be able to merge the practitioner listings with the practice listing since it’s a multi-practitioner office. Google only does this for solo practitioners.

  32. A display site is our business address in a garden centre. We rent the land where we run our business and we erect various garden buildings for customers to come along an view. Our permanent office is also there. We intend to open within another garden centre where we our another permanent office and a display of garden buildings.

    1. You would only be allowed 2 listings if there were 2 offices. Buildings without people in them can be added to Google Maps but cannot use Google My Business.

  33. Hi there,
    I have a problem that has not been addressed here and not sure how to handle it properly to be successful and not being punished by Google. The company i work for owns 5 businesses. Someone created a Google listing and in name put names of 3 of them. It is not verified. It has some reviews but they are all mixed for different businesses so I would just want to completely delete this listing and set up three new ones. I was thinking of marking it as “private” and then create 3 new business listings. Will it work, or you have a different suggestions to handle it? Thanks! 🙂

    1. I would try to contact Google My Business to see if they can move the reviews over to the appropriate businesses so you don’t lose them. They should also be able to remove the listing for you.

  34. Hi Joy, thanks for a reply. To be honest there are only few and I don’t worry about them and I can’t tell which review is for which business, so I’d rather delete it, start with a blank page and organise everything in a proper way. So what do you think should I do to make them delete the listing. Report it as private or just contact them? Thanks!

    1. It’s hard to say without knowing the specifics. Google might choose just to “fix it” instead of removing it. They often don’t like deleting data. You can report it as private if it’s an unverified listing that is using a residential address.

  35. “You would only be allowed 2 listings if there were 2 offices. Buildings without people in them can be added to Google Maps but cannot use Google My Business.”
    Hi Joy, we will have an office at both locations (our existing one and the one we are opening in early September) with full time employees so should be fine.

  36. Hi Joy,
    We have two listings for a veterinary office. One for the practice owner/primary vet and another for the hospital. We just claimed the one for the primary vet and want to merge them. We do have a relief doctor that works 1-2 days per week listed on our website, but she also has a business as a vet at another hospital that is her primary hospital. I called GMB and they said they wouldn’t merge because “each practitioner has the right to have their own listing” and it is created “organically” which they have no control over. I explained it was the practice owner that wanted her business listing with own name removed and just to merge with business, but it was to no avail. They said since we have other vets listed on our website they wouldnt do it per their policies. How can we merge these listings?

    1. Hey Aaron,

      In my experience, you can’t. Google will only merge practitioner listings if it’s a solo-practitioner.

    2. This is late, but may be helpful for others – why not temporarily remove the other vet from the website, then ask GMB to merge the two listings? Afterwards, add the other vet back.

  37. Hi Joy,

    I offer Permanent-Make-up in 2 different cities in order to get more schedule complete.
    So I have 2 stores / location in which I practice, both running under the same name. I don’t have any collaborateurs.
    Both locations are verified.
    For one location I already have many reviews in Google Maps. The other one is still empty.
    Would you suggest reaching out to GMB team in order to have them join them? I’m hoping that both address will then be listed in my single / merged business in Google Maps and that it will have all reviews from location A. Would that be possible?

    1. Hey Tom,

      Google won’t merge listings with 2 different addresses. If your customers come to those locations, you should keep both. If customers don’t show up there (you come to them), you should be able to get Google to delete one.

  38. Don’t you agree that this isn’t done very intelligently by Google?
    It’s me who treats clients on both locations, so I think it would only be natural to have the reviews merged.

  39. Google Maps is designed to map out every physical place that exists that customers would come to so Google isn’t going to want to remove a listing for a location that fits that description.

  40. Hi Joy,

    I just created a GMB and I have a painting company that I am trying to list on there. I went ahead and listed my address (which is a UPS store with my box number) and other info. I then clicked on the verify button and it then showed that there were two businesses listed at that address ( one was another painting company but with a different box number). It asked me if one of them are mine, I said no and proceeded to the next page and clicked on mail verification. After that, it said my listing was suspended, “Your listing has been suspended due to quality issues.”

    Not sure what to do here, am i not allowed to list my business address as the ups store with the box number? A lot of other companies do this I’ve seen, especially painting, carpentry, plumbing companies. Not sure why it won’t work for me. Any help would be much appreciated, thank you in advance!

    1. Hey John,

      Using a UPS store is against the guidelines. You should use your home address instead. If you don’t want it to be visible to the public, you can clear the address once you verify the listing.

  41. Thank you Joy for responding, much appreciated. I live 45 minutes from the county that I am targeting for my business so I don’t want to lose potential clients because of this, and don’t want to attract potential clients in the county I live in. After I hide my home address and list the service areas that I service to, will Imy company name pop up for that particular service area. For instance, if someone searches for “painting in Scarsdale NY” (which i label as a service area, but my address is 1 hour away) will I be listed right there?

    Thank you!

    1. Unfortunate not. You’ll rank based on where your address is. We’re hoping with some of the updates Google has been launching lately for service area businesses this might change but as of right now, the service area you select has no impact on ranking.

  42. Hi Joy,
    I have verified ownership of 2 listings. One which I had created, and another created by someone else. Both my listings are ranking well for different sets of keywords. Both listings have good reviews on them. Personally, I would prefer to have a single strong listing. But then, will I still rank for all the keywords of both listings?

    Thanks,
    Niki

    1. Hey Niki,

      The fact that they both rank for different terms makes it sound like possibly the categories are different on them or they have a different primary category. It’s hard to say without knowing the specifics. If you want to post your example with the links to both listings on http://www.localsearchforum.com, I’d be happy to take a look.

  43. Hi Joy,
    So are you still of the opinion that only 1, not 2 listings are advised if you want to rank in the map 3 pack? I have an older listing that was overlooked when we set up the new, at the correct location. The other is an old address … and may actually be unverified. The newer more built out with a review too is verified – is the way you tell with the little shield that has a check mark in it? When I was trying to delete the older, Google asks if the newer is a duplicate. I don’t want them to eliminate that one in favor of the other that only has an outside picture. I considered changing the phone number, (delete the address? or select the business not done here) and then maybe even build that one out. Any comments would be appreciated. Thanks.

    1. Hi Diane,

      If you want to post the example over at the Local Search Forum someone can look into this for you. In 99% of scenarios it is ideal to merge duplicate listings. The little shield with the check mark used to be a good way to confirm if a listing is verified but that has gone away with the separation of GMB and G+.

  44. Hello Joy, this is jasmin from India(jamngar) i have 2 different business in 1 business building. and both have reviews. both having different names. suddenly 1 was suspended while trying to merge with a duplicate of same name. and now after numerous complains and request google verifies duplicate and suspends original (with reviews and ratings) and while trying to claim from another account it gets suspended once it is verified. tried mail verification, email verification, phone verification and even offered to upload property documents. but they say that can not be done.

    please guide. what we have done wrong.

    the place is same as the name of email.

  45. Thanks Joy,

    Thanks for the advice. i am creating a thread where you suggested. But it seems you could not understand my problem. i hoped you may ask some clarificationa and advice some steps to be taken to sort out the matter.

    thanks.

  46. What if there is a forward facing individual that has their own page in the name of the company but they give permission and WANT it to be merged into one page with the company?

    1. Hey Laura. Google will only merge it if there is only one practitioner that works for the company.

  47. Thank you, Joy. So, the problem we are having is that people are posting reviews on the wrong person’s page, but since it is the right COMPANY, it looks like I won’t be able to move them?

    1. If the review specifically mentions the person and you want it moved to the practitioner page, that should be achievable. If it mentions the practice name and no mention of the practitioner, you might also be able to get it moved to the practice page.

  48. Hey, One of business listing is verified but other one is still pending for verification. I am trying to merge the both but i am not getting how to do. any suggestion

    1. Is the one pending verification live on Google? If it’s live and unverified, you can ask Google to merge it without verifying it. If it’s verified by someone else, you have to wait to get the postcard. If there is no live listing on Google (you created the listing), you can simply delete it from your Google My Business dashboard.

  49. We are leading bank in India and has arounf 4100 locations across nation.We added all our locations and got them verified in GMB.But we are facing issues from duplicate listings added by unknown third parties in Google they are verified as well.They are sometimes having correct addresses, sometimes not,but problem is they trick people into giving off sensitive data over phone and cheat them.How to get this removed.?as it is huge data we dont have a list of duplicates also!we contacted google who told we cannot help!!now please tell if any SEO can help us??They use our Banks name and its actually illegal!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Send this to a friend