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  1. #1
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    Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Unable to claim G+ Local page.
    I would appreciate any feedback or suggestions on how to deal with this.
    I created a Google account to share with the customer for marketing purposes and claimed his old Places page using that Google account - optimised and submitted in mid Nov last year.


    There was the usual long wait and 2 x PIN requests before verification and it is eventually approved - and then it remained under review for weeks.
    Even after approval - when I find the G+ Local page in Maps it is still carrying the old address with a spelling mistake and freephone number that was corrected in mid November 2012 - but in recent weeks it has slowly gathered the images loaded when it was optimised at that time.
    So in the Dashboard edit everything is fine - but Maps still has the old information - 3 months on.
    Current link with the giveaway spelling mistake and freephone number:
    https://plus.google.com/105737812350...ut?gl=uk&hl=en


    Places Dashboard entries: 02.26.2013-16.06.29 - Bravos's library


    (yes, I've just picked up and corrected the typo in the email address)


    Company: Hudsons Office Furniture
    Ravenswharfe Road
    Dewsbury
    West Yorkshire
    WF13 3RD
    Tel: 01924 467335


    Categories:
    Office Furniture Store
    Canteen furniture
    Executive office furniture
    Boardroom furniture
    Home Office furniture


    Page optimised mid Nov. First verification has been by post - the only method offered - on 2 Jan. It seems that any change to the address triggers another verification. I corrected the county from Yorkshire (in common use by real people) to West Yorkshire (administratively correct) after it was verified and that triggered another verification on 21 Feb - currently awaiting another PIN.


    However, my main question is about why the Page does not appear in the Google+ account for the business owner? Using the same Google account that claimed the Page - when I go into Pages in G+ it says that there are no pages available to claim.


    Have I completely misunderstood the transition from Places to G+ Local - if not does anyone have any suggestions?


    I found some help initially from Google by email at local-help@google.com but they seem to have got bored with my follow-up questions and have not replied since 4 Feb to my question about where to find the Youtube link in the format required by the Page when it is no longer available from Youtube. I eventually overcame that problem by botching it together but it is odd that Google demands a format in one tool that it does not provide from the source platform.


    Sorry if I sound a bit tetchy but am seriously frustrated and have had to suspend client charging while I sort this out. FYI you may already have seen my post on this subject on Jeff Hershy's FB page. I am driven to try all sources of help. Note that G+ Local telephone support is not available outside the US.

  2. #2
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Hi Bruce,

    Normally I'd jump right into help, but in midst of fatal PC crash and madly trying to recover files to set up new PC when it gets here. This old laptop keeps crashing so I'm in crisis mode.

    Other pros will be here to help you soon and I'm sure we can get this sorted out.
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    LocalSearchForumLinda Buquet .:. Google Local Specialist

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    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon". ;-)

  3. #3
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Bird View Post

    However, my main question is about why the Page does not appear in the Google+ account for the business owner? Using the same Google account that claimed the Page - when I go into Pages in G+ it says that there are no pages available to claim.
    Have you created a G+ Business page? If you haven't, you need to do that, and you can initiate the merging process from the G+ interface.
    Colan Nielsen l GMB Top Contributor
    Vice President, Local Search at Sterling Sky
    Connect on Google + and Twitter

  4. #4
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Quote Originally Posted by Colan Nielsen View Post
    Have you created a G+ Business page? If you haven't, you need to do that, and you can initiate the merging process from the G+ interface.
    Hang on a sec. Don't try to merge. If I'm even partially understanding your post I don't think that's the issue OR at least not yet.

    Sounds like you are having a problem with the G+ Local (Place page) or are misunderstanding how it all works. PLUS most of us don't recommend merging yet because it's too buggy anyway.

    At any rate, lets try to get to bottom of the Place page issue 1st because even if you decide to go against advice and merge - Google says NOT to merge with a Place page that has problems. So let's be sure we know what's up 1st.


    You said "Unable to claim G+ Local page."

    But you said you've been changing stuff in the dashboard. If so it's already claimed.
    AND you showed us a screen shot. SO you have access to Places dashboard.

    But then you said "However, my main question is about why the Page does not appear in the Google+ account for the business owner? Using the same Google account that claimed the Page - when I go into Pages in G+ it says that there are no pages available to claim."

    Which does not make sense to me. Maybe there is confusion about how it works.

    You have access to the Place page dashboard right? Sounds like there are data issues but you are waiting for PIN. After PIN hopefully that page will update.

    That PAGE is called a Google+ Local page and you have log in for it.

    Did you already set up a Google+ Business page, with category set to local?

    When you say "Using the same Google account that claimed the Page - when I go into Pages in G+ it says that there are no pages available to claim."

    You say CLAIM but the Place page is already claimed. Are you saying you HAVE a G+ Business page and you are trying to verify the G+ page? (Which is also known as merging with the Place page)

    If so 2 things... (Sorry this is all so complicated!)

    1) WHY do you want to merge/verify. Is there a very specific reason you NEED to? Or are you just doing it because you think that's the latest, greatest and you should? Because it's super buggy and beta and there's a chance everything could go south on you, so I'd wait.

    2) IF you really have a specific need to merge, then I would wait to be sure the Place page is correct and wait til after the data updates on the live page.

    3) Oh and IF all the above is correct and what you've been trying to do is merge - it LIKELY is saying there is no page BECAUSE you are waiting for a PIN so that page in dash is in limbo until you get it. Again you should not even try to merge a Place page that has data problems and "needs action, waiting for pin means it's not active. (Even if it's showing up live.)

    Does any or part of this make sense and seem to jive with what I thought you were trying to explain?

    If so please confirm. If not, please try to explain in more detail.

    And when you do, please don't refer to anything as a page since there are 4 different types, so hard to know what you mean. Lets use these names so it's not so confusing: Place page (the one with reviews) and Google+ Page (the one with the follow button). And if you need to say claim or verify, please explain which type of page you are referring to. Google has made this all so complicated it's tough to even get on same page to try to help folks out.
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    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon". ;-)

  5. #5
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Linda
    Thanks for the lengthy response.
    You have touched on the same conclusion that I was coming to - have I completely misunderstood this process?
    And as you say, Google has made this whole thing so damn complex that it is not surprising.


    Will digest your post and come back to you. If you could answer one question in the meantime.


    It was my understanding that Place pages were being tranferred into G+ Local pages by Google. The process was complicated for the user by Google making you Claim the G+ Local page even if you already had a verified Places page.


    If you had claimed a listing showing in Maps with a Google account then it would be reasonable (?) to assume that that page (as in 02.27.2013-15.54.07 - Bravos's library) would be claimable in G+ by the same Google account. Or is that the 'merge' that you refer to which is to be avoided?

    Hence, no, I have not created a G+ Local page from the G+ account. I have assumed that the page accessed through the Places dashboard - but being listed in the 7 pack as a G+ Local page (02.27.2013-16.08.22 - Bravos's library) - was the location I am trying to claim from the G+ profile.


    Just to confirm you are correct that I claimed the clients listing which showed up in the 7 pack, completed the listing and all my content has been visible in the Dashboard since mid Nov - but the listing showing to the public is resolutely incomplete and unedited except for the images - which have transferred for some reason.

    Finally, has anyone put together a concise description of the 'locations' involved and the transition process? Despite having bought various products and spent hours absorbing this stuff it does look as though I need to go back to basics. :-(

  6. #6
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Linda
    Having re-read your post:

    We seem to have the same understanding that the old Places page is now a Google+ Local page - to which I have access to the Dashboard. It has previously been verified and I had this problem even after verification but it is now awaiting a another verification after I edited the County. (State to you)
    Conclusion: any edit of the basic NAP triggers another verification. True or False?

    No, I have not set up a Google+ Business page with category set to Local.

    Is this a step I have failed to understand? As I explained before, I assumed that a Place page claimed and verified by a Google account to which Google has added the functionality of G+ would be accessible to that same G+ profile when the owner clicked on the Pages icon in G+. True or False?
    Surely, this was the whole point of G+ commonality across all Google services that created such a furore about privacy.

    I have no driving desire to merge - even if my current level of understanding allowed me to. In fact, as my logic as above does not involve any merging I guess that's possibly another clue to the fact that I have been missing a step.

    Assuming that merging is not recommended then that must mean that there are many old Place pages now G+ Local pages out there on which the business owner is unable to use the social functionality of G+ to engage their prospect/customer community.

    Similarly, clicking on the Pages icon in my G+ profile offers me a big red button to Create New Page - which offers me various options including Local Business or Place. How does that page differ from the old Places page now called a Google+ Local page?

    Is there any reason not to go that route, recreate the whole page and ask Google to kill off the old one? Granted it would create some work in correcting links but at least it would kill off the problem.

    Regards

  7. #7
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Bird View Post
    Similarly, clicking on the Pages icon in my G+ profile offers me a big red button to Create New Page - which offers me various options including Local Business or Place. How does that page differ from the old Places page now called a Google+ Local page?

    Is there any reason not to go that route, recreate the whole page and ask Google to kill off the old one? Granted it would create some work in correcting links but at least it would kill off the problem.
    NOOOOO that's totally not what you want to do. You are still confused by the options and I don't blame you.

    Unfortunately I'm still dealing with fatal PC crash and crazed so can't spend time trying to explain.
    BUT JUST DON'T DO ANYTHING YET because you are missing some understanding links.

    See this post for a visual...
    http://localsearchforum.catalystemar...-clearing.html

    In quick nutshell. The page you have in Places dash is called a G+ Local page. That's the one that has reviews. AND THAT'S THE ONE THAT RANKS IN GOOGLE SEARCH! So you do NOT want to delete it.
    AND Google won't let you delete it anyway.


    The G+ Business page CAN be set up as local category. It does NOT show in the rankings and only has all the social features.

    Then the 3rd option is you can MERGE the 2 (also known as verifying the G+ biz page) and have everything all together and in ONE page. BUT IT'S BETA AND BUGGY and not recommended yet.

    So basically we are only half way to the full G+ experience G has in mind and it's only half baked right now.

    So you can have a G+ page if you want for social. Just don't merge it yet (also known as verifying the G+ business page.) Just keep them separate for now ESPECIALLY since the Place page may have issues.

    And yes every time you edit NAP you'll have to verify. But you should never change NAP unless it's wrong. So once all gets corrected you won't have to keep verifying the Place page.

    Gotta run, that's all I can do for now. Gotta get new PC configured.
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    Are you a PRO? Join the "Local Search Pros" G+ Community!

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon". ;-)

  8. #8
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    Linda,
    Thank you again for your extensive help and for the treasure trove of information on the forum.

    Point taken about not rocking the boat until Google gets things sorted out.


    I made a short (2:25) video to illustrate that I do appear to have achieved a successful Merge for my own business - more by luck than judgement, 03.02.2013-09.51.38 - Bravos's library


    And this goes some way to explaining my confusion as I did not understand why it was not working for my clients site.


    Reading your follow-up at http://localsearchforum.catalystemar...-clearing.html about not merging with our address hidden - my apparently successfully merged page occurred with my address hidden.


    Would the following be an reasonable representation of the current situation?


    https://cacoo.com/diagrams/cMFAxRGLzwiBYFP6


    Hope you've got your PCs sorted. ;-)


    Regards
    Bruce

  9. #9
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    Re: Merging Places and G+ Local pages - and a few other things!

    That diagram is great! And yes your listing is merged. It has reviews AND follow button AND check mark next to your name. It's not that it's impossible to merge it's that Google says not to and if you have you need to delete the G+ page.

    Mine is merged with address hidden too:
    https://plus.google.com/u/0/113358377118440631404/about

    I did mine the day they announced merging was available and I'm the one that told them about some merging bugs with address hidden. Then a couple days later they announced listings with address hidden should not be merged.

    Then a couple months ago they said IF you merged with address hidden, you MUST delete your G+ Page. That will leave you with a regular Google+ Local AKA Place page.

    They told me I could keep mine merged for testing. PLUS I'm in a unique position in that I could go right to G if something went south.

    BUT the problem is if you merge with address hidden 1) It's not supported and buggy 2) Any edit could cause your address to flip to visible, then you'd risk being deleted 3) PLUS THEY STARTED SUSPENDING merged listings with address hidden.

    So your listing is at very high risk right now for being suspended OR deleted. I'd delete the G+ page and Google has been saying you must.

    Here are instructions and advisory from Google:
    https://productforums.google.com/for...ss/MI5yJcP1pJ8


    FYI I have been planning to delete my G+ page even though G said I could keep it. Because after you merge you are not supposes to edit in the Place dash and there is stuff I need to do in there for testing. AND I'd rather go back to a regular G+ L page for many reasons. BUT the tech probs kinda got in my way. After I get both systems finished I'm going to delete it though.
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    Are you a PRO? Join the "Local Search Pros" G+ Community!

    Note: Due to mulitple RSI injuries, pardon short replies. Typos? Blame it on "Dragon". ;-)

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