Unverified Google+ Local Pages Killed Off

Google have recently circulated an email in forums and online communities (an excerpt of which is below) stating that Google My Business pages that haven’t been verified will be unduly closed down on 28th July 2015.  Here’s what they said:

In the past few months, you may have seen some changes in the look of Google+ pages that have been associated with Google My Business (GMB) accounts. These changes, including how we treat business pages without owners, are part of Google’s ongoing effort to simplify people’s experience with our tools. We are constantly working to provide only valuable and rich content to our users.

On July 28, Google will begin shutting down those GMB-associated Google+ pages that have not been associated with user accounts and are also not verified. You may find that some of your Business View tours also sit on such pages, but note that after this removal of unverified Google+ pages, the Business View tours will still remain available on Google Maps and Google Search.

For many small business owners the process of claiming and verifying their Google My Business or Google+ Local pages as they’re also called doesn’t always run smoothly.  First you have to have a Google user account, then claim your listing and wait for your postcard to arrive with the verification code to verify the listing.   Many people quite frankly don’t even know if their listing is verified, and many more end up with duplicate pages.

What IS a GMB page even??  If you’re a local business (eg a plumber or tree surgeon) your Google My Business page certainly has some SEO benefits.  When  you claim your page and your map listing you have the chance to rank locally in the map listing results on Google even if your website is nowhere to be found so that’s a definite advantage.  So if you haven’t already claimed your listing you should do so.

What if you’re page is one of those that’s been affected?  You can simply create a new Google+ page and follow their process to verify it fully to get you back in the game.  Even if you’re not a purely local business you should do this – a fully completed and SEO optimised Google+ Business Page can still help your website’s ranking as a link from here to your website still carries weight.

To get your business on to Google My Business visit this page.

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