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Retail Departments in Google My Business

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

I'm looking for expert advise please.  We have a proposal from a vendor who suggests that they will create community awareness by associating their business with our participating locations.  That searchers seeking specific service from one of our departments, provided by the vendor, will see search results for this collaboration in search results.  The vendor indicates that they will execute all administrative actions to set up the association with Google My Business and the only activity for us is to return the postcards mailed to the stores.

 

 

We have multiple locations (approx 200) all bulk verified.  My understanding is that Google My Business is for individual locations with one address.  The department that the vendor wishes to work with is not at a separate address.  I am not aware that a department, unless it has a separate physical address, can be submitted to Google My Business.  Perhaps I don't have all of the information and maybe the guidelines have changed.  I would appreciate any insight from the experts here at GMB Forum so that I can go into this meeting with accurate and up to date information.

2 Expert replyverified_user
1 ACCEPTED SOLUTION

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Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Carolyn H
January

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Sounds to me like they are trying to use your addresses to create a bunch of ineligible listings.  I would stay far away from stuff like this. 


Joy Hawkins, Google My Business Top Contributor
Was my response helpful? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Owner of Sterling Sky
Read My Column on Search Engine Land
MyAdvanced Local SEO Training Manual

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Retail Departments in Google My Business

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

My advice:  be very doubtfull and don't sign any kind of contract before they told you very clear what they offering and to what conditions.

 

Perhaps  @JoyHawkins or other TCs  can share her/their thoughts also?

_________________________________________________________________________
Helmut Geissler, Google My Business Top Contributor   |  my G+ profile

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

Thank you Helmut, your guidance is always appreciated.  I hope to hear from @JoyHawkins and other TCs on this.  Have a pleasant day.

Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Carolyn H
January

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Sounds to me like they are trying to use your addresses to create a bunch of ineligible listings.  I would stay far away from stuff like this. 


Joy Hawkins, Google My Business Top Contributor
Was my response helpful? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Owner of Sterling Sky
Read My Column on Search Engine Land
MyAdvanced Local SEO Training Manual

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

Yes that is my first inclination @JoyHawkins but wanted to first make sure I didn't miss a significant change in GMB.  I always appreciate your assistance.  Have a great day.

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

@JoyHawkins @Helmut Geissler I just had a great learning conversation with the vendor.  They run a virtual (web based) business, they have claimed by Service Area which I am unfamiliar with as we have brick/mortar locations.  After understanding their approach, and researching Service Area GMB guidelines, it seems to me that neither we or they would be at risk of penalty or non compliance with Google Guidelines.  I very much appreciated your input here and just wanted to take a moment to follow up on this conversation.

 

Thanks again!

Carolyn

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Top Contributor
# 7
Top Contributor

Carolyn,

 

I strongly lean towards these listings being a violation of the guidelines but it's impossible to say for sure without knowing the business and addresses.  


Joy Hawkins, Google My Business Top Contributor
Was my response helpful? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Owner of Sterling Sky
Read My Column on Search Engine Land
MyAdvanced Local SEO Training Manual

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Top Contributor
# 8
Top Contributor

Just seconding the new response given by  @JoyHawkins to @Carolyn H

_________________________________________________________________________
Helmut Geissler, Google My Business Top Contributor   |  my G+ profile

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Top Contributor
# 9
Top Contributor

Hey Carolyn,

 

I got your email but wanted to reply to you on this thread.  I try to keep my work email specifically for my business and separate from my volunteer hours on the forum.

 

What you sent me is 100% against the guidelines. I know you said that you don't think what they're doing is intentional but I would have to disagree due to the industry they are in and previous patterns we have seen in this industry.  

 

When you emailed me you mentioned they are a virtual business that does consultations by phone and video. This makes them ineligible for any GMB listing since you must conduct in-person contact with customers (see here under eligible businesses).

 

If you ever have an issue come up where you need advice but need it privately (not on a public forum), I would suggest you get in contact with Google My Business directly on social media.  You can direct message them at @googlemybiz or message them on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/GoogleMyBusiness/.  Usually they respond in 1-5 business days.


Joy Hawkins, Google My Business Top Contributor
Was my response helpful? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Owner of Sterling Sky
Read My Column on Search Engine Land
MyAdvanced Local SEO Training Manual

Retail Departments in Google My Business

Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭
# 10
Explorer ✭ ✭ ✭

Thank you so much for your assistance.  I appreciate it greatly.  I did not think to visit the GMB Facebook for further private consultation and for that I apologize, sincerely.  I appreciate the volunteers here, I did not intend to take advantage so I also apologize sincerely for that big goof as well.