Google My Business Account suspended? Here’s what to do
Google My Business (now called Google Business Profile [GBP]) is a free platform that lets businesses manage their online presence across Google services, including Search and Maps. Your GBP can drive a lot of sales to you if you’re proactively promoting it, but it can also become a nightmare if you get suspended.
If Google suspends your account, don’t jump around like a spider monkey! There is a list of steps to get it reinstated before the wolves start howling at the moon.
Google My Business account suspended: How did this happen?
Google suspends Google My Business accounts for various reasons. The most common are spammy practices against terms of service or incorrect information on your profile. Another common cause is registering as a physical address business when you are a service area business.
Reinstating your Google My Business account depends on the type of suspension you received. A soft suspension means your Google Business Profile is still live in the search results, but you won’t be able to modify anything until Google removes your suspension. A hard suspension is when Google removed your profile from search results and the map, signaling a more serious violation.
Google does not charge for a suspension or the reinstatement process. The process can be frustrating and time consuming, so you may want to hire a third-party service to avoid the headaches. That said, you can follow the instructions below to do it yourself!
Google My Business account suspended: What steps should I take?
Here are the steps you’ll need to take to fix a suspension:
1. Review the Google Business Profile TOS
Read the Google My Business terms of service before making any changes to your account. The terms of service spell out for you what is acceptable for the various fields and functions of a Google Business Profile. If you are not familiar with the terms of service, you could have very well violated one of the rules without evening knowing it.
2. Check your suspended profile for issues
Google will not inform you as to why your account was flagged, but many factors can lead to a suspension, such as:
- Keyword stuffing the business name field
- Using a P.O. Box or virtual office for the company address
- Multiple listings exist for the same company
- Google or users detect fake reviews on your profile
- Users reported your profile as spam via the search results or maps
- Profile ownership was recently transferred
- A manager or owner account was suspended, leading to a profile suspension
Examine your profile for any of these common suspension reasons above. Note that “others are doing it,” is not a reason that will be accept by Google. It is only a matter of time before they are suspended too.
3. Fix the issues with the suspended profile
You need to ensure your profile is compliant with GBP policies before you can request reinstatement. If you see one (or more) of the common issues listed above you must take action by updating it. You want to put your best foot forward, but also avoid end less back and forth with Google support, since they will not tell you specifically what is wrong.
If you are in a high-risk industry such as escort services, marijuana, online pharmaceuticals, locksmith services, lotteries, and home services, you may have difficulty getting reinstated. We have seen time and time again that businesses in these industries will have to provide plenty of documentation in order to get reinstated after a suspension. Thank your peers 🙂
If you’re unsure what’s wrong with you Google My Business account, hire a professional to help you. Google will not walk you through the process of getting your account reinstated, but GMB Gorilla will!
4. Submit the GBP Reinstatement Form
Once you are certain you’re in compliance with Google terms of service, you will need to fill out a reinstatement form. In addition to the basic questions in the form, you will be asked to submit proof of ownership and location. If so, include one or more of the following:
- A copy of your business license
- A utility bill or phone bill with your business name and address
- Articles of incorporation
- A government-issued I.D. with your name and address
- Photos of your business and signs
- Proof you are not sharing a location with another business
These can be easily attached to your request to unsuspend your account. Remember, the more information you can provide to prove you’re a legitimate business operating at this location in real life, the sooner you will get your suspended account back.
5. Wait for a response from Google
It takes two weeks, on average, to hear from Google. It respond sooner, or take longer. You may also be asked for additional information.
Unfortunately, Google may state that it can’t reinstate your profile because there are still policy violations. If this occurs, you may appeal the decision after fixing the remaining issues with the account.
Google My Business account suspended: Appealing a Google decision
What if Google makes a mistake? If you think you have corrected all the profile issues on your GBP account, you can submit an online appeal to Google. Notification of the outcome comes via email. If Google denies your appeal, you are allowed to re-appeal.
Appealing a decision can be time-consuming, so it’s best to avoid suspension in the first place. Keep your profile updated and accurate, and follow all Google policies.
The appeal process can be frustrating, but don’t try to make Google reinstate your profile by creating a new one. Google will also suspend that account, and you could receive a permanent ban from the platform.
Also, hounding support to see what is taking so long will not help. The best thing you can do is wait patiently for a response from Google.
Google My Business account suspended: When do I hear from Google?
Most businesses will hear back from Google within two weeks. If you have completed the process and submitted all the required information, you should receive a notification from Google within this time frame.
However, some businesses have reported that it can take up to four weeks to hear back from Google. If you haven’t received a response after four weeks, you can contact customer support for help.
When Google reinstates your business account, you will receive an email informing you that your account is active again. You can then log in and make any necessary changes to your profile and listings.
Is your Google My Business account suspended? Let GMB Gorilla help
If Google suspends your account, you may not be sure what’s wrong. When you need a professional to help you get your profile reinstated, contact GMB Gorilla.
Our team works with Google daily to resolve Google Business Profile suspension issues, so we know how to take action and handle problems effectively. If you have any further questions about Google Business Profile suspensions or if you need to get your account reinstated, check out our Google My Business Suspension Service.