Google is Making Progress with Locksmith Spam

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I’m actually really happy to report that Google is making progress lately with locksmith spam in Google My Business.  The spam problem is still absolutely terrible and at an all-time-high so I’m hoping Google will quickly expand these efforts way past the locksmith industry.  There are dozens of other industries that are becoming equally terrible (cleaning companies, garage door companies, personal injury lawyers, auto insurance etc).

In the last couple weeks, we’ve seen an insane increase in the number of locksmiths posting on the GMB forum complaining that Google has suspended their page.  A lot of the users are clear spammers who I feel no sympathy for, however, Google is also flagging legitimate businesses and those are being taken down as well.

We’ve been able to get a lot of them reinstated so here is my advice to the legit locksmiths out there:

  1. If your real business name contains a city-name, leave it off your GMB profile if you want to avoid getting suspended. I have had this discussion with several businesses. ServePro and Pop-A-Lock are 2 national Service-Area-Business (SAB) chains that name their franchisees with the particular neighborhood or city they are in. I don’t care if it’s on your business license, my advice right now is to still leave it off. A locksmith we work with is “technically” named “Pop-A-Lock of Milwaukee”.  He had his page suspended years ago and we had a really hard time getting it reinstated. Since then, we’ve stuck with listing him as just “Pop-A-Lock”. Listing the “of Milwaukee” is just too risky and I’m seeing tons of other Pop-A-Lock locations getting suspended at the moment.
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  2. If you list a PO Box on your website, remove it. Don’t list a PO Box or UPS Store anywhere online.
  3. Make sure the address on your business license matches what is listed in GMB. Inconsistencies in addresses online are really triggering these suspensions. Your business license and website are the most authoritative citations that exist for your business.