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The Business Categories Available Do not Suit My Business

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# 1
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I have a financial advising firm. We provide pension and investment advice.


I recently built our google my business page. Financial planner is a business category but financial advisor, pension advisor, investment advisor etc. are not and I was therefore unable to pick them as business categories.


When I type financial advisor, pension advisor, investment advisor for my local area into Google, my business doesn't appear within the google maps section of the search results (it does appear in the main results section).


Other companies i compete with do show in the google maps section of the search results, presumably because they set their google my business pages up when categories could be customised (financial advisor, pension advisor, investment advisor etc.). As a result, they have a massive competitive advantage over me and Google isn’t working efficiently because my company isn’t showing under the business categories we operate in within the google maps section.


Is there any way I can ask google to add categories to their database, so my company can show under google maps where it should?


I phoned Google but the person i spoke to wasn't very helpful.

2 Expert replyverified_user

Re: The Business Categories Available Do not Suit My Business

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor
nobody can be much helpful in your situation.

There is unfortunately no option to request any custom categories.
This isn't affecting you but many other buisness owners.
You are supposed to select the closest possible category fro their list of default categories
Helmut Geissler, Google My Business Top Contributor   |  my G+ profile
Marked as Best Answer.
Accepted by Linda Buquet (Top Contributor)
February 2016

Re: The Business Categories Available Do not Suit My Business

Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor

It's actually possible to see the full list of categories that a competitor is using, but it can be a little cumbersome to get there. If you have a few competitors you're curious about, I'd be happy to tell you what they're using. I think you're jumping to conclusions though... as far as category selection goes, the playing field is level. Everyone's going with the same constraints that you are, and if they weren't, Google's a whole lot more sophisticated than you might think. Having proper categories is important, don't get me wrong (and I think it's a great idea to see what successful, similar companies in highly competitive cities use) but jumping to conclusions might keep you from learning what you need to do to succeed. So when you say you aren't showing in the map section for your city in your business area, do you mean you're not in those top 3 results below the map? Or do you mean that if you click 'more places' you're not anywhere on the list at all? If you're on the list and just showing poorly, you've probably got a lot more work cut out for you than just changing categories, especially if your industry is competitive. Either way, @Helmut Geissler is absolutely right, it's really unlikely that your competition is using descriptors you don't have access to. 

Without your actual business information I can't say much more, but if you're curious about some of the things Google pays attention to, here's a relatively trustworthy overview:

There's a ton of resources to help business owners get most of the way up to speed at least, but here's one at least you can noodle around in for half an hour and get the idea.

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Re: The Business Categories Available Do not Suit My Business

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
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Hi James,

Thank you for your response. Much appreciated.

We are not showing at all under the maps. For example we provide pension advice in Bristol (UK) but if you type in Pension Advice Bristol or Pension Advisor in Bristol we don’t show on the maps.

My company is called Churchill Wealth Management (

If it’s ok can you let me know what categories Nicholls Stevens Financial Services are using ( They seem to come up top for everything to do with our industry in Bristol on Google Maps.

Thank you for sending the overview I've read it and its very helpful.

Also one last question if that’s on. Do you know if google maps/ Google punishes a company for having to firms at the same address?

Thanks again,


Re: The Business Categories Available Do not Suit My Business

Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor

For sure @Mathew B, happy to help. 

I looked up Nicholls Stevens, it looks like the only category they're using is Financial Planner. It's interesting too that Google suggests to choose the minimum number of categories that fully describes your business, so a lot of businesses set up 'right' will only have one or two categories anyway. If you want to read more about Google's recommendations on Categories, go here and scroll down to "Categories". 

I'll have to double check on best practices for UK phone numbers... it jumped out at me that your business isn't mentioned with the country code anywhere, but it is on your Google my Business listing (and only there) but that's what your competition is doing too, so that might be fine. Someone more knowledgeable than me will have to chime in. 

There IS a huge issue though that I found... check out these two profiles:

So a few interesting things. In both of those searches you sent me where you're not showing up, that second listing IS showing up, and it's showing up fairly well at that. It's listed with a different address (32 Ellacombe Rd Longwell Green) and a different website ( though that website just redirects to Having a redirect URL in your Google my Business profile can get the account penalized, or even shut down, so even that by itself is a problem for the 32 Ellacombe location. 

The bigger problem though, is those two listings have the same phone number. So... did you all move? Do you have two locations? Both of those profiles are claimed, so I assume it's not an accident. Either way though, those two listings should definitely not have the same phone number, and that second listing (if it's a valid listing at all and you want to keep it) shouldn't have a redirect to another website in it's website field. My guess is that Google's got your profile you're not seeing anywhere flagged as a duplicate. Get that cleaned up and see where that gets you... what you need to do to clean it up though kind of depends on the circumstances. 

As far as whether or not a business can be penalized for being at the same location as another business, As long as the other guidelines are met, it's fine. Makes sense when you think about it, Google's just out there to catch spam, and there's a ton of valid reasons why two businesses would be sharing a single address. Sharing a phone number (especially while sharing a website and having a really similar name) is a much bigger issue, so start there. 

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Re: The Business Categories Available Do not Suit My Business

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# 6
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I sell credit card processing services. There is no such category available. The closest I can find is "Credit Counselling,"'which is not really close at all. I called and spoke with a representative who was no help. I am getting quite a few hits, but they are for the wrong service.