Google shows pending changes to remove the description from half of my GMB locations(!)

Tim Colling

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I just noticed that, for 13 of the 27 locations in my original GMB dashboard, Google shows pending "Updates from Google" that all consist of Google showing a pending change to remove the description text for the location. They all look like the one shown in the two screen shots below.

As far as I know, you can't easily overcome or decline those changes in just one or two easy steps.

Is anyone else having this problem?

Google is becoming incompetent at protecting data that is entrusted to them.


Here's a close-up of the description field:



Here is the entire Info panel




And the
 
Last edited:

Phil Rozek

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@Tim Colling, is it correct to assume Google's just saying "Nope," and not proposing a different description in place of the current one?

In any case, I'm not too surprised. GMB sometimes removes things like "Debit Cards" under "Payment Methods." As though Google knows what kinds of payment methods the business owner accepts, or the business owner has anything to gain by fudging that.
 

djbaxter

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Could it be that it looks more like an advertisement than a simple description of the business, @Tim Colling?

My suggestion would be to substitute the following in your example above:

PROFESSIONAL GERIATRIC CARE MANAGEMENT SERVICES
All Managers are professionals in social work, nursing, geronotology, and related fields. They serve as objective professionals who conduct assessments, make observations, and advise familes in making decisions about their loved ones.
 
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Do you use the same business description across multiple platforms? It could be being flagged as unoriginal content. We've had a few clients that have had this happen, and for each one of those clients, they had the same business description on Yelp, Yahoo, Facebook, etc.
 

Tim Colling

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Could it be that it looks more like an advertisement than a simple description of the business, @Tim Colling?...
Thanks for that question/suggestion, @djbaxter. Anything is possible, of course, but it's impossible to know when they just remove text without explanation in an arbitrary and high-handed manner like this. <sigh>
 

Tim Colling

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Do you use the same business description across multiple platforms? It could be being flagged as unoriginal content. We've had a few clients that have had this happen, and for each one of those clients, they had the same business description on Yelp, Yahoo, Facebook, etc.
Thank you for that suggestion/question, @Cordell Crowley. Yes, we do use that language or something very similar to that language across multiple platforms. So yes, it is possible that Google has decided to strike it off for being "duplicate" content.

That's an interesting speculation, but it's hard to know since Google cannot be bothered to say *why* they are unilaterally doing this.
 

Tim Colling

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Update:

I just looked at my GMB dashboard and there are two new "features" there which I may be able to use to reject the Google updates.

1. There is a new entry in the To-do column in the dashboard, which calls out the fact that there are 13 locations that have "Google updates" pending.



2. After you click on that To-do choice and then select all the affected locations, there is a mass-update tool choice in the controls at the top of the screen to "Discard Google updates".

Boy howdy, is that ever a relief!





 
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Thank you for that suggestion/question, @Cordell Crowley. Yes, we do use that language or something very similar to that language across multiple platforms. So yes, it is possible that Google has decided to strike it off for being "duplicate" content.

That's an interesting speculation, but it's hard to know since Google cannot be bothered to say *why* they are unilaterally doing this.
One client who self-managed their listing had the same description on Yahoo and Yelp as they did on GMB, and this happened to them, where Google removed their GMB description entirely. I tested it once by using a couple paragraphs from one client's About Us page on their website as the GMB business description, and sure enough, after about a week or so Google had marked through and removed the description from the dashboard. So, I believe it's safe to assume they are pushing for those ~750 characters to be all-original (or close to it). Although, as you said, Google doesn't outright tell you anything so it comes down to testing and trusting the test results.

Not sure if it's the issue you are currently having, but it was the cause of our clients' descriptions being removed at least. We've since ensured we are writing unique business descriptions for each platform, and we haven't had it happen again. Hope this helps!
 

Tim Colling

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... I believe it's safe to assume they are pushing for those ~750 characters to be all-original (or close to it). ...We've since ensured we are writing unique business descriptions for each platform, and we haven't had it happen again. Hope this helps!
Thanks, @Cordell Crowley. This is the first time we've seen this issue, and we've been using content from the clients' websites for a long time. It is very helpful to know that you have seen this, and that it wasn't just us that were running into it
 

Colan Nielsen

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Tim Colling

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@Tim Colling my gut tells me the all-caps
"PROFESSIONAL GERIATRIC CARE MANAGEMENT SERVICES" may have triggered it.

I don't think it has to do with using the same description across multiple listings. Google has said that Multi-location brands are ok to use a standard message across all listings if they choose to.
That was a reasonable guess, thanks, @Colan Nielsen. However, they aren't all that way. For instance, shown below is the description for one of the other locations. And come to think of it, we have not used this description anywhere else on the internet so far.
 

Tim Colling

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@Tim Colling did you have any luck getting any of the affected descriptions to stick?

Have you tried editing any of them? Or "discarding" any of the updates?
I had this problem with 13 locations. I selected those thirteen in the (old) dashboard and then I clicked on the button on the top right to "Discard Google updates".

This worked for 12 of them. For that one last one, it won't accept that dismissal action. I speculate that that is because I am not the primary owner for that one. Tomorrow I will be having a video meeting with that client and I will ask them to try doing it using their ID, which is the primary owner account.

Does that help? Have you begun seeing this happen to some of your clients also?
 

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