The fact that Google is one of the most popular search engines in the world makes it essential for both your website and online listings to be simple for potential customers to find. To do that the basic tool that you should use is Google Business Profile (previously known as Google My Business). It is a fantastic tool for increasing your company’s local visibility. It is also completely free to use and displays your profile on Google Search, Google Shopping, and Google Maps, making your company much more visible to potential customers.
If a business has a complete Google Business Profile, approximately 70% more people are likely to visit it. It only makes sense that so many companies decide to create GBP accounts. However, things might not always go according to schedule. Keep on reading our article to learn the most frequent problems and solutions if, despite setting up a GBP account, you are still having trouble appearing in Google search results for your services.
Is your business verified on Google?
This is the number one reason for your business not to show up on Google. You must first verify your business before you can update your business name and other information on Google. Check that your information is correct and that you are the only one who can edit it when you verify your business.
To determine whether your company listing has been verified, simply use Google Search to look up your company. Make sure to include the name and location of your company. Even if you have not verified it, it will appear on the right side. Now take these actions: On Google, click on your profile and select “Suggest an Edit.” Look for the “Own this business?” option. If you see this, Google has not yet verified your company. Or you can also check if your business is verified or not by using Google’s “Check your verification status” page as well. If you are verifying for the first time here are the steps that you should take:
- First, add or claim your GBP. If you have done this start from the second step.
- You can use the phone, text, email, or video verification options after adding or claiming your profile. You might need to use more than one method to verify which depend on factors such as business category, public information, region, support hours, and volumes. If you do not verify through email Google will send you a postcard. This process can take up to 14 days.
- When you are verified, you get a notification. Return to your Google Business Profile account after receiving the email or postcard.
- Click on “Enter verification code” and enter the five-digit code that is found in the notification or on the postcard.
- Lastly click on the “Verify” option after entering the code.
You might have to wait a few minutes for your verification to complete. By not changing your company’s address, name, category, or requesting another code, you can avoid verification delays. If you have not received your postcard within 14 days, remember to contact support.google.com/business.
After we have addressed the most common reason you do not see your business on Google, let’s look at some more specific reasons.
Does your business show on Google Maps?
Verifying your GBP listing is only the first step. Depending on where you are, you may need to establish a stronger location authority for your listing for it to show in Google Maps. Your business listing must be accurate and consistent with the information posted online in order to gain stronger location authority. This is crucial if your company has moved and the addresses on GBP listing have not been updated. Customers and internet users are often quite proactive; if they find an error with your business’s address, hours, or contact details, they may report it. In addition to misleading and alienating potential customers, having the incorrect location could lead to Google completely removing your listing from Google Maps and the search engine. That is why, it is important to be timely in updating any changes to your basic information on GBP, such as your business name, address, phone number, website URL, and hours of operation. You may also need to re-verify your business on Google if your address or business name changes.
Also, do not forget that if your company’s physical address falls outside of the area that Google considers the local market, your company will not appear in Google Maps when people search in that area. The further away your company is from the user’s current location, the less likely it is that it will show up in Google Maps.
Do you have a complete Google Business Profile?
It is pretty simple, really. Google will do a better job of connecting you with potential customers if you give it more details about your business. It is not advised to leave your Google Business Profile blank. That is one of the major factors in why user search intent cannot be matched to your business pages. Make sure you give Google as much information as you can to improve your chances of appearing in the top three Google Maps results. It will be simpler for users to find you online when they are looking for your goods or services.
Is your company utilizing Google Business Profile categories?
Google uses category tags to increase the visibility of your company on Google Maps. These labels can be used to help identify the type of business you have. You can decide on a main category that describes the range of your enterprise. Additionally, you can add particular tags that highlight particular services you provide. Your listing might be hidden if you do not use these tags.
Also, although you may have chosen them, the categories may be incorrect. You can add up to ten business categories related to your business by default. However, bear in mind that selecting ones that are completely unrelated may reduce your online visibility. Choose a second category only if it makes sense and fits your business, as the first one should best describe it. You do not want to add a second one just to have two because it will hurt you in the long run.
Is your website optimized?
Your website may affect how easily customers can find your company on Google Maps and Search. Your website’s content will inform Google of who you are, what services you offer, and how you can rise to prominence in your niche. Your chances of ranking could be hampered if your website is not Google-optimized.
Google may be less likely to show your GBP listing in the Map Pack if your website is not well-designed. Spam-filled, inefficiently coded, and non-mobile-friendly websites are not liked by Google’s algorithm. Additionally, it dislikes websites that load slowly and websites that have been hacked. You need to have a properly optimized, quickly loading website if you want to rank in Google Maps.
Is your GBP listing suspended?
Your listing will not show up on Google Maps if Google has suspended it due to quality problems. Numerous things could cause this, and regrettably Google does not specify why your listing might have been suspended. Your listing might be suspended if Google questions the location of your business and requests photographic evidence, or if you have updated your address and are waiting for verification. If Google finds that you have stuffed keywords into your GBP title, you might also run into issues.
To avoid having your local listing suspended, make sure:
- Not to stuff too many keywords in the field for the business name.
- Not to verify multiple listings for the same business.
- And not to use a forwarding URL.
Hard suspensions and soft suspensions are the two main types of suspension. The most common and usually temporary suspension is a soft suspension. It indicates that your profile has been deactivated until any issues are resolved, and that reverifying your account will resolve the issue. Assuming you have resolved whatever was causing the suspension in the first place. During the suspension, your business will not appear on Google Maps, but once you have verified your account, everything will return to normal, with no impact on your rankings.
Hard suspensions are usually bad news, and they are frequently the result of serious violations of Google’s policies. Hard suspensions can also occur when Google deems a business to be unsuitable. A hard suspension removes all details associated with your account, including all reviews and images. Such suspensions are sometimes lifted on appeal, but they are usually permanent. The best way to deal with suspensions is to avoid them in the first place. This includes adhering to Google’s guidelines when creating the account and reviewing it on a regular basis to ensure it remains compliant.
Is your website domain new?
Patience is essential if your website domain or GBP listing are relatively new (less than a year old). You are up against much more seasoned competitors who most likely have a strong Google Maps location authority, a good number of favourable reviews, and citations from numerous listings, apps, and relevant websites.
Begin by requesting feedback from as many satisfied customers as possible. The quantity and quality of online reviews for your business have a significant impact on how Google ranks you. Although it will take some time, the results will be worthwhile. It is a certain way to compete with established businesses in your area. However, do not expect Google to display your GBP listing in Google Maps if you have a lot of fake 5-Star Google Reviews. Encourage genuine customers to leave you genuine Google reviews. One genuine review from a satisfied customer is preferable to ten fake reviews from people who live outside of your area. Google can detect a forgery a mile away and keep your listing far from where it should be.
Also do not forget to continually add new content to your website and GBP account. Since your domain is new, to keep your GBP listing fresh will be even easier. Doing these will help your business gain traction and eventually compete with other listings.
Do you have a sufficient number of NAP citations?
NAP is an abbreviation for Name, Address, and Phone Number. NAP citations serve as online references to your company’s information. Simply put, if your company is mentioned elsewhere on the internet, Google is more likely to trust it. This assists Google in ranking you higher. Businesses can benefit from NAP citations by becoming listed in high-quality online directories.
In addition to Google Maps, you should also look at Yelp, Facebook, Apple Maps, Yahoo, Bing, and other listings. With so many listings and directories available, it can be time-consuming to check and update them for accuracy on a regular basis, but it is worthwhile nevertheless.
Are you using an unrelated search query?
If your listing is not appearing, there is a chance your search term is not closely enough related to your company. If it is relevant, you might think about including more keywords in the section of your business description. However, you must be careful not to stuff your description with keywords and ensure that the descriptions read naturally. You can use free tools like Google’s Keyword Planner to help you decide which keywords to use for optimization on your profile. It is best to target keywords with a high search volume but low to medium competition.
That’s about it! Remember that your GBP listing is completely free. So, just claim your listing and fill out as much information about your company as possible. To stand out from the crowd, conduct keyword research, follow Google’s rules, and rely on Google reviews. If you that, your listing will be more likely to appear on Google. Do not forget to frequently update your listing with new images and status updates, and to always provide a positive user experience.