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  1. #1
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    SAB franchise issue, Google won't verify

    I'm doing work for a franchise that has about 100 addresses that are mostly independent of the others (office/workers/NAPs/clients). I keep getting blockaded by Google, phone and email, that I need to list all of these cities under the same address. Their typical response now:

    Specifically, Businesses that operate in a service area, as opposed to a single location, should not create a listing for every city they service. Businesses that operate in a service area should create one listing for the central office or location and designate service areas. Learn how to add service areas to your listing..
    Do they not realize that listing different service areas under one addresses means we'd have to service the entire US given we're in all major cities? Or that we're supposed to set a mile radius of 3000?

    Before I used to use 1 email address per 1 address, so is that the solution so Google stops questioning what's happening (I've tried to explain the logic, their phone support doesn't seem to understand how this works, and they don't reply to emails).

    It's even more absurd since they did verify the first 6 addresses I added, but I digress. Is 1:1 email:address how to do this properly?

    edit: Also all of the listings still have 'Needs action - not yet published' which is not what they're telling me... it should be 'Needs action - this listing does not comply with our policy of allowed terms'. (You'd think anyway.)

  2. #2
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    Re: SAB franchise issue, Google won't verify

    Are they independently owned by each franchisee? I would think that would qualify as individual businesses.

    Google is tough when dealing with SABs as you know but there are tons of nationwide SAB companies like Rotor-Rooter that have listings for each location. If names are all the same, then I'm not sure indiv emails would help much as they would see they are all part of the same franchise and may still connect them and have the same problem.

    It's quiet here weekends, but try bumping this on Monday and see if any of the other pros who have dealt with similar situations has any other ideas.
    Linda Buquet .:. Forum Founder, Google Local Specialist

    If you benefit from advice here... Please pay the community back by sharing on social OR helping someone else at the forum. Thank you!

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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: SAB franchise issue, Google won't verify

    A couple things that jump out at me based on my hazy understanding of the situation/questions:

    1. Each Google listing needs to be for a physical location Ė that is, a non- PO Box, non- virtual office address. Canít tell whether thatís the case here, but if itís not, that would probably (1) explain the issues youíre running into and (2) mean that itís back to the drawing board.

    2. If the franchisees / locations are independent of each other, to the point that each franchisee does NOT want his/her listing to be claimed through one ďcentralĒ Google account (e.g. yours), then each franchisee will probably have to set up a Google listing personally. Google may take issue with your setting up 100+ email addresses and not doing a bulk upload. (Thatís just a hunch on my part.)

    Any chance you could break down the questions a little more? The more you could mash them into Gerber baby food for me, the more likely it is I can weigh in with some solid advice.

  4. #4
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    Re: SAB franchise issue, Google won't verify

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Rozek View Post
    A couple things that jump out at me based on my hazy understanding of the situation/questions:

    1. Each Google listing needs to be for a physical location – that is, a non- PO Box, non- virtual office address. Can’t tell whether that’s the case here, but if it’s not, that would probably (1) explain the issues you’re running into and (2) mean that it’s back to the drawing board.
    They're not PO Boxes or virtual offices, no. They are all residential addresses, some homes, some apartments.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Rozek View Post
    2. If the franchisees / locations are independent of each other, to the point that each franchisee does NOT want his/her listing to be claimed through one “central” Google account (e.g. yours), then each franchisee will probably have to set up a Google listing personally. Google may take issue with your setting up 100+ email addresses and not doing a bulk upload. (That’s just a hunch on my part.)
    They accepted a lot of the corporate owned locations, but I guess they decided there were too many addresses being listed at one point and cut it off............. The franchisees are independent of each other but they stay out of the online advertising side of things.

    Quote Originally Posted by Phil Rozek View Post
    Any chance you could break down the questions a little more? The more you could mash them into Gerber baby food for me, the more likely it is I can weigh in with some solid advice.
    The offices are primarily used for interviewing and training. The franchisees locations take their own calls, but the corporate owned locations have their numbers forwarded to one or more call centers if it's not answered at the location in X rings. That shouldn't matter for a SAB in any case-- any business in this situation is in the same boat, calls taken at the address or not, there is a physical presence that's used for operations and there's no other way to rank... so arggggg. I'm pretty sure I made a huge mistake contacting Google at all, now someone who has very little idea of local SEO is meddling around and I'll assume this won't turn out well.

    Thanks again Linda/Phil.

  5. #5
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    Re: SAB franchise issue, Google won't verify

    You've broken down the situation nicely; can you also sum up your question(s)?

  6. #6
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    Re: SAB franchise issue, Google won't verify

    What you need to do is first get citations (business listings) on at least some of the important sites and give them time to index. When you try to verify a listing with Google, they scrape for existing citations to help verify the info. If you are using one account and trying to create several Google listings in one day and that information is listed little to no where else online, then that is of course going to look like spam and get flagged.

    Get the citations and it will make all the difference.

    You also want to stay organized with all those listings and there are proper ways to format the information for each listing. Give me a shout if you need more help with this.

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