It’s become such an important part of the digital search landscape that these days we rather take it for granted, but Google My Business can be a hugely irritating distraction if your business is not ‘normal’.
As an Agency we get asked to verify customer listings all the time and sadly, the current GMB system isn’t quite set up to allow this to happen smoothly.
As an example, we’ve been trying to verify a single listing for one of our franchise operations for over three months and still we can’t get it sorted.
The mistake was, in the first place, using the ‘bulk upload’ feature as one of the listings clearly has an issue with it. Sadly, we can’t see what. Apparently, we’ve had an email from Google saying what the problem is but….we didn’t get it. Nor did the customer. And because we can’t access this email we can’t fix the problem which means we get stuck in an infinite loop.
No matter what you click on, you always end up with the standard helpful ‘how to’ articles which don’t solve the problem.
Ironically, this entire process used to exist before Google was even thought of. It was called the Business Free Line Entry and was admirably administered by British Telecom.
Every business that had a business telephone line installed was eligible for a ‘discretionary free line entry’ in the classification of their choice in their local Yellow Pages. So far, so good. The lovely ladies (and gents) at BT used to ring up every new business, offer the entry and from there they would automatically appear.
If by any chance the entry was wrong, you could phone up and someone would correct it for you.
Sadly, progress hasn’t helped here as although we can now ‘self serve’ via the internet, there is no human available to sort out problems like this one. And because no one is around to listen then Google is unaware of the issues this is causing.
We’ve currently losing man hours every week trying to sort this problem out and our customers are getting a little irate. After all, how hard could it be….
Without being overly simplistic, there needs to be a massive ’HELP’ button somewhere which you can press after everything else is exhausted. Because at this moment in time the only thing exhausted is all our patience.