Google users make approximately 2 trillion searches annually. This presents a great opportunity for businesses to reach customers and prospects. With a Google Business Profile, your business can show up on search results related to your location, products/services, and industry. Restaurant searches alone constitute over 1 billion monthly searches.
Therefore, it comes as a shock when your business doesn’t show up on Google. This can happen for a number of reasons and we’ll delve into these as well as solutions for your business listing not showing up on Google.
One of the main reasons for Google My Business not showing up in search is a lack of location authority. Location authority refers to the ability your location has to rank highly on Google. The more location authority you possess, the more favorably Google will rank you, and your business could even make it to one of the highly coveted top 3 spots.
The idea behind location authority is that Google wants to ensure it’s providing users with correct and relevant information, and that it’s sending them to the right place. Its algorithms will comb through different listings, their websites, and other data sources such as social media pages or TripAdvisor to match users with results that align with their search queries.
You can enhance the location authority of your restaurant listing in several ways:
Keep tabs on your Google My Business (GMB)
Are your details such as contacts accurate? Have you claimed your GMB listing? These small details could be a deal-breaker if they go unaddressed.
Actively managing your Business Profile is essential, as it can help mitigate issues with your listing. For instance, if you’ve relocated, be sure to update your business listing details. That way, Google won’t flag the difference between your current address and the old one as suspicious activity.
Ensure your website is well-optimized
You can do this by testing how compatible it is with mobile devices as well as using website performance and monitoring tools such as Google’s PageSpeed to gauge how well your site is doing.
Monitor your reviews
Seventy-two percent of customers utilize reviews on Google as part of their decision-making process. Undoubtedly, reviews and star ratings have a significant impact on the overall perception prospects have of your business.
One challenge you might face is bad reviews that can seriously dent your restaurant’s image. What can you do about this? Have a customer feedback process in place at your restaurant. Emphasize to your team members the value of asking diners about their experiences. You can also use comment cards to gather feedback. Online, you can use surveys, website feedback widgets, and email.
This way, you can easily address issues before someone gives negative feedback on your Google profile or other platforms. Next, actively monitor reviews on your Business Profile. Respond to reviews quickly, taking care to address customer pain points.
If some of the reviews appear to be fake, misleading, or inaccurate, take advantage of Google’s provisions to deal with this. Beyond using spam filters to detect and take down inauthentic reviews, Google makes it possible to flag such feedback directly:
Method 1: Via Google Maps app
Method 2: Via Google search
Once you’ve done this, Google will assess that user’s contribution in line with their Contributed Content Policy.
Location authority isn’t the sole reason your business is not showing up on Google. There may be some underlying issues with your Google My Business Profile. Here are ways you can resolve them:
Another reason for your business listing not showing up on Google is due to lack of verification. Google insists on verifying business profiles for security reasons. Verifying your Google My Business confirms that you are the rightful owner of the listed business, ensuring that no one else can update the profile.
Prior to verification, you first need to add or claim your profile. To add, open Google Maps, navigate to the menu, and scroll down to select “Add your business.”
To claim, open Google Maps, enter your business name in the search bar, click on your business, and select “Claim this business” then “Manage now.”
There are multiple ways to verify, depending on your type of business.
Postcards are the default option Google offers. Once a user has added or claimed their business, they may see an option to verify by mail. In this case, Google issues a postcard containing a verification code using the mailing address provided.
However, as a restaurant, you may find that there are more verification options at your disposal including phone and SMS. That’s because Google offers a different set of options for businesses classified as service area or hybrid businesses.
What is a service area or hybrid business on Google?
Listing your service area informs people of the geographical area where you operate. However, note that if you don’t serve people at your business address, you shouldn’t include it under the "Info" tab in Business Profile Manager. Instead, Google requires that you leave the “Business location” section blank.
Google defines a service area business as one that “visits or delivers to customers directly, but doesn’t serve them at its business address”. A service area business can only create one profile for the area it serves.
On the other hand, a hybrid business not only serves customers at its business address but also makes visits or deliveries directly to them. This is the best option for your restaurant business, particularly if you offer both dine-in and delivery. You can set the hours in which you usually operate, display your physical address, and designate a service area.
As earlier noted, not all Business Profiles have the option to verify by methods other than mail. However, if the options to verify by phone, email, or video are visible, here are the steps to follow.
In some cases, there may be an option to use Search Console for verification.
If there’s a mismatch between the nature of your business and the category selected, Google may flag this, resulting in reduced visibility on search results. Whether you accidentally or intentionally set the category, it’s important to fix this.
The good news is that you’re not confined to a sole category. Google offers you the option to set both primary and additional categories, so you can add more information on your restaurant as needed.
For instance, you can set “Restaurant” as your primary category, then add “Fast food restaurant” and “Meal delivery.” Note that you can select up to 10 additional categories.
The other possible answer to the question “Why is my business not showing up on Google search, Maps, or other services?” is a worst-case scenario—your listing may have been suspended. In the event that this happens, you would see a message indicating that occurred due to quality issues.
This can happen if:
Running a business takes tons of effort. Often, restaurant owners or managers get so overwhelmed with everyday operations that monitoring reviews gets moved to the back burner. And yet, online reputation management has never been more important. From TripAdvisor to Zomato, there’s no shortage of digital spaces for your customers to give feedback on your food, service, ambiance, and more.
Localyser does all the heavy lifting for you with a feature-rich set of solutions that make it easier to manage reviews. We offer integration with over 50 sites including Hungerstation and Talabat, a single dashboard for all your reviews, customer feedback forms, local customer support, and more.
All of this is easy to set up without having to involve your IT department.
We’ve helped some of our clients double their number of reviews by enhancing their responsiveness.
To see Localyser in action, book a demo today.
Have you heard the term "Google is now your home page"? Well, for businesses with a physical location or a store such as restaurants, retail and entertainment your Google Map Business listing has become your home page.