When your Google My Business listing becomes suspended, you as the listing owner can no longer interact with the listing. If your dashboard says your listing is suspended but you can see your listing in Google Maps, this is known as a Soft Suspension. While it might not be obvious that your listing is soft suspended to the rest of the world, people can make suggested edits and you have no way of approving or denying them.
If your dashboard says your listing is suspended but you can not see your listing in Google Maps, this is known as a Hard Suspension. This is the worst-case scenario because every day you work with Google to restore your listing, is another day you have zero traffic coming in from that listing.
Google will never tell you why you got suspended. It is up to you as the listing owner to read the rules and regulations and correct what could be wrong. Our main focus today will be covering the common reasons why a listing is suspended.
1: Your website contains a forwarding url.
As per the Google Guidelines “Do not provide phone numbers or URLs that redirect or "refer" users to landing pages or phone numbers other than those of the actual business, including pages created on social media sites.”
The result is often a Soft Suspension.
2: You are adding extra keywords to your business name.
As per the guidelines, adding unnecessary information to your name (e.g., “Google Inc. – Mountain View Corporate Headquarters” instead of “Google”) by including marketing taglines, store codes, special characters, hours or closed/open status, phone numbers, website URLs, service/product information, location/address or directions, or containment information (e.g., “Chase ATM in Duane Reade”) is not permitted.
Doing so will normally cause a soft suspension.
3: You are a service area business that didn’t hide your address
According to Google’s guidelines, you should only show your address if customers show up to your location. Breaking this rule normally results in a hard suspension.
4: You have multiple verified listings for the same business
The Google Guidelines state “Do not create more than one page for each location of your business, either in a single account or multiple accounts.” Google will suspend all listings including the real listing. The real listing will usually become soft suspended and the rest will usually become hard suspended.
5: Your business is not allowed on Google.
Some businesses might not be allowed on Google Maps. This is dictated by the state or federal laws in place. An example would be gun shops.
According to the Google Plus guidelines, http://www.google.com/intl/en/+/policy/content.html regulated goods are allowed if they set a geographic and age restriction.
6: Your GMB listing was created with a virtual office or a p.o. Box.
Google states If your business rents a temporary, “virtual” office at a different address from your primary business, do not create a page for that location unless it is staffed during your normal business hours. Businesses try to make more than one listing because they are trying to rank in multiple towns. This will cause the listings in question to likely be hard suspended.
7: You created a listing for an online business without a physical storefront
To qualify for a Google My Business profile, you must make in-person contact with customers. Since online businesses don’t make contact with customers, they do not qualify for a Google My Business profile.
8: You run a service or class that operates in a building that you don’t own.
An example are AA meetings that meet weekly at a local church. The AA meeting is not eligible for a listing on Google Maps. According to the guidelines, “Ineligible businesses include an ongoing service, class, or meeting at a location that you don’t own or have the authority to represent.”
9: You didn’t do anything wrong but the industry you are in has a lot of spam.
Industries like locksmith or plumber are notorious for spam listings. The spam filters are set to be very sensitive which can cause legitimate businesses to be removed as well. If you know you did nothing wrong, contact Google Support and they will restore your listing.
If your listing is ever suspended, It's recommended you analyze the last few changes you made or last bit of content you added. If you truly did nothing wrong, Google might still ask for business paperwork to prove your real. Assuming there are no other issues, your listing could be restored in about 3 days. After the listing is restored, it will take up to two weeks for your ranks to return to normal.
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