There has been a lot of talk recently about what Google planned to do about dormant Google My Business listings that are showing up for local searches on Google. While it seemed Google was removing some, it turned out they were merely removing some listings that were compiled with third-party resources but were never claimed by the business.
Now it looks like Google is planning to step up their game to ensure local businesses keep their business listings up to date with the most accurate information. Google is planning to email business owners who haven’t logged into their Google My Business account for at least a year, and asking them to sign in and confirm their business information is still correct, or make any changes that are needed.
What about those businesses that don’t login? According to Google, if the accounts remain inactive, they “run the risk of being de-verified, or in rare cases, removed from Google Maps.”
While Google is only emailing those who have gone at least year without logging in, Google recommends that all Google My Business users check and update their local listings at least once every six months.
This is a good move by Google. I have come across outdated listing information in Google’s local results, and it not only impacts the business in question, but also in the quality of Google’s search results. If Google’s local results are serving up incorrect information, it might mean that some of those searchers will end up switching search engines.
But when companies don’t keep their online information up to date, it can create an unpleasant experience for people searching the web for information like if a customer arrives at a local business only to find that the address or operating hours have changed.
No word on exactly when the emails will start to go out, other than “soon”.
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