Reasons Why My GMB is Suspended
Google My Business is an incredible tool for organizations looking to better their online presence across Google. That being said, logging on just to realize that your account has been suspended can be very frustrating, especially considering that with the high volume of suspended listings, Google is taking up to two-to-three weeks to process an appeal. Whether you have recently logged on to find that your account was suspended, or you’re looking to ensure you are compliant, here are the most common reasons why your Google My Business account might get suspended.
Co-Working Location, PO Box, or Virtual Address
An increasing issue for some businesses is if the business is in a space deemed a “virtual” or “executive” office. Google is very clear in its eligibility requirements that your business location must not be within an office space run by a coworking or shared office space company. Additionally, your location must be a physical address with signage for your business, not a PO Box.
Keyword Stuffing in GMB Name (Spammy GMB Listings)
Ranking a business in the local three-pack is a tough feat, especially in competitive geographies. In the past, many businesses would spam their Google My Business name with keywords in an attempt to rank in the local three-pack. While this may have been a viable strategy in the past, Google has updated its algorithm to understand keyword stuffing and is making a concerted effort to rid the internet of those who cut corners with spammy GMB listings. Local guides also play a big role in reducing the number of spam listings on Google.
Changing Address or Contact Information
The information pertaining to your site on Google My Business is the most important part of your profile, and for that reason, Google pays a lot of attention to it. If you have any mistakes in the information in your listing, you risk suspension. Fields such as your business name, location, phone number, website URL, and service type are especially important and must be as accurate as possible. If the information on your website and Google My Business listing are inconsistent or are often changed, the Google Bot will view this as suspicious behavior which can lead to a suspension.
Account Level Suspensions
There are also occasions where Google will suspend your listing due to violations of their policies, such as Google Terms of Service and User Content and Conduct Policy. If Google believes that your account is partaking in suspicious activity such as leaving fake reviews or changing the addresses of different locations, there is a good chance your account will be suspended.
When the Website or Phone Number Forwards to a Different Site/Phone
When listing your phone number and website on your Google My Business, you want to provide information that will connect the user as directly as possible to the individual business location. It is advised to use local phone numbers as often as possible, and avoid using central call center numbers. Stay away from using phone numbers or URLs that are not directly associated with your business, as this is a red flag for Google. Providing misleading information will almost always get your account suspended.
What if Your Google My Business Listing has been Suspended but is Compliant?
Sometimes there is nothing wrong with your Google My Business listing. Perhaps you find yourself in an industry that is spammy. Google does its best to immediately suspend listings that they believe to be illegitimate by updating their algorithm to look for specific violations. Sometimes these mechanical suspensions will accidentally flag and suspend a legitimate business. Even the slightest inaccuracy in your listing can make you appear suspicious to Google, and it is important to remember to keep everything nice and clean. If you believe that your Google My Business listing was incorrectly suspended, you can appeal the suspension here.