Google reviews being published on both published and duplicate listings

Noelle Leahy

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
17
Hi all, i'm new here so I hope I explain this correctly. My client hired a 'Local SEO' agency to manage their GMB listing. They somehow duplicated the existing listing, so there are now 2 listings, one marked as 'published' and the ORIGINAL listing marked as 'duplicate'. The strange thing is that new reviews are being published on both the 'published' and original 'duplicate' listing. I have twice been on to GMB support and both times they have told me to delete the original listing, that they are independent of each other. I did try to delete the original listing several times and the error message "we are having server issues at the moment, please try later" or words to that effect came up continuously, leading me to believe that there is indeed some technical issue. My question is has anyone had this issue before with duplicated reviews and how can I safely delete one of the listings? Should I insist that they merge them instead? I have control of both listings. tia
 

Cherie Dickey

Local Search Expert
Joined
Jan 30, 2018
Messages
224
I wonder if the agency did something to cause a soft suspension of the original listing, then re-claimed the listing rather than petition support for reinstatement..

In any case, the listing marked as duplicate should not be live, as Google said. The two should be identical though with the exception of photos. Photos from the old listing would not be in the new. You'll have to re-add those. Merging the two won't do anything (and isn't possible, I don't think) because one is not live... it currently only lives in your dash.

As for whether or not it's safe to delete the dup, you need to determine if that dup is still linked to a brand account. I've had something similar to this happen before, and found that deleting the unpublished dup also deleted the entire brand account (and the YouTube channel, G+ page, and photos linked to it) if one existed (which happens when the GBL was created before Google stopped associating GMB with the brand accounts).

You can double check this by going here while logged in, and clicking on the brand account if one exists. It will tell you what products (if any) are linked to that account: https://myaccount.google.com/brandaccounts

If the old GBL isn't linked to anything that you wouldn't mind losing, then it's ok to delete as support is telling you to do. If it's linked to a YouTube you would like to keep, you can change the account it's linked to so that it's no longer linked to the brand account you want to delete. If it's linked to a G+ page that you would like to keep, then you need to keep the unpublished dup, I'm afraid.

As for the error message, I think there is an issue currently... there's another recent thread mentioning errors, and I've noticed a couple myself.

I hope this helps!

Cherie
 

Noelle Leahy

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
17
Thanks a mill Cherie, you may have hit the nail on the head, the listing is as you described.
1) Because the duplicate listing isn't live, am I right in assuming that there is no negative impact on SEO?
2) The dup is linked to a brand account but there is nothing else of value there - I assume i'm looking at the apps listed where the arrows are in the attached screenshot?
3) Are you confident that deleting the dup won't also delete the published listing as they appear to be linked (because of new reviews being published on both listings)?
Thanks so much in advance,
Noelle

 

Rich Owings

Local Search Expert
Joined
Apr 21, 2014
Messages
348
I remember people talking about the age of your GMB listing being a ranking factor. So I always thought the ideal solution would be to merge listings. Am I wrong about that?
 

Colan Nielsen

Administrator
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
3,192
1) Because the duplicate listing isn't live, am I right in assuming that there is no negative impact on SEO?
2) The dup is linked to a brand account but there is nothing else of value there - I assume i'm looking at the apps listed where the arrows are in the attached screenshot?
3) Are you confident that deleting the dup won't also delete the published listing as they appear to be linked (because of new reviews being published on both listings)?
Thanks so much in advance,
Noelle
1)That is correct. The only potential issues are the ones that Cherie mentioned with it being linked to YouTube and losing photos. You would also lose any location extensions if you had it linked up with Google Ads. You would also lose the Google Website if you had created one.

2)Correct.

3)Yes, confident. As long as you delete the one that is marked as a "duplicate" it will not impact the listing that is marked "published".

Do you have some screenshots showing what you mean by "new reviews being published on both listings"? If one of them is marked as a duplicate there should only be one live listing.
 

Colan Nielsen

Administrator
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
3,192
I remember people talking about the age of your GMB listing being a ranking factor. So I always thought the ideal solution would be to merge listings. Am I wrong about that?
Hey @Rich Owings when two published duplicates exist yes you can ask Google to merge them. But in this case it sounds like the listing marked as a duplicate is not live. It's basically a shell listing that only lives withing the GMB dashboard.
 

Noelle Leahy

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
17
1)That is correct. The only potential issues are the ones that Cherie mentioned with it being linked to YouTube and losing photos. You would also lose any location extensions if you had it linked up with Google Ads. You would also lose the Google Website if you had created one.

2)Correct.

3)Yes, confident. As long as you delete the one that is marked as a "duplicate" it will not impact the listing that is marked "published".

Do you have some screenshots showing what you mean by "new reviews being published on both listings"? If one of them is marked as a duplicate there should only be one live listing.
Thanks so much, you've put my mind at ease! Please see screenshots of the 2 listings with the same new reviews published on both, since the duplication. The listing was duplicated about a month ago. Very weird!



 

AllanDanilo

Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2018
Messages
4
Hi, @Noelle Leahy

It's really interesting what you show. In theory, only the verified listing should show the owner replies; as it does to you in both, verified and not verified listings.

My question in this case would be, are you managing both listings with the same email account? If you do so, probably that's the reason why you see all that information on the unverified listing.

I you don't, then this is one of the biggest misteries I've ver seen (at least on a GMB listing).

Cheers!
Allan
 

Noelle Leahy

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
17
Hi, @Noelle Leahy

It's really interesting what you show. In theory, only the verified listing should show the owner replies; as it does to you in both, verified and not verified listings.

My question in this case would be, are you managing both listings with the same email account? If you do so, probably that's the reason why you see all that information on the unverified listing.

I you don't, then this is one of the biggest misteries I've ver seen (at least on a GMB listing).

Cheers!
Allan
Thanks Allan for that. The new listing was added to my Google account by the company who duplicated it, so they are both on my account now. I can't remember if new reviews were being duplicated before the move or not. I'll move the duplicate listing to another account and see what happens, thanks for the suggestion!
 

Noelle Leahy

Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2018
Messages
17
Something strange happened because I had taken the time to reply to all reviews but when the listing was duplicated, all 70+ replies disappeared from both listings and GMB support can't get them back.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,796
Something strange happened because I had taken the time to reply to all reviews but when the listing was duplicated, all 70+ replies disappeared from both listings and GMB support can't get them back.
We had that happen. We had a client who had someone take the listing from us (on accident). Once we got it back and verified, all the review replies were gone. Sucked. I think it happened because we both requested access, no one answered, so we reverified. That's when it happened. Not sure if this happens for everyone or not?
 

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