Staffed Regus Office Location Suspended in GMB. Any way to save?

Greg Schueler

Member
Joined
Mar 14, 2013
Messages
140
I know about the risks of using a Regus office and virtual offices in general, but I have a client that uses leases an office in a Regus complex that they use and have staffed M-F.

All has been well since they moved into the office until 2 weeks ago the GMB listing was suspended and no longer visible in the search results. They had the hours listed as 24/7 since they have after hours call answering services, but they only staff the office 830-5. So I switched the hours in case this was the issue. (The suspension didn't say why, just 'quality issues'. There was also an additional category that was similar, but I removed that extra category too. Once done I resubmitted for appeal.

I received a canned response stating:
The address used in your listing doesn’t match the address of your business. You must list your business at its correct location.

In particular: Do not create a listing, or place your pin marker at a location where the business does not physically exist. P.O. Boxes/Virtual offices are not considered accurate physical locations. Your business location should be staffed during its stated hours. Please note that mailboxes at mail receiving locations are also not considered accurate physical locations.

Please change your listing to comply with our policies and submit it for review. We’ll review your listing and if it complies with our policies, we’ll lift the suspension.
The address formatting that is used in this office complex is a little strange in that the main address is 1234 Example Ave Suite#100. Then inside that suite #, there are individual room numbers. All offices inside use the same Suite#100. The preferred mailing address is just the client's business name and the Suite #100 address. they normally don't need to include the Room #, but in response to the GMB message I added the Room# in addition to the suite# and sent back a full explanation of how the office formatting was at this location.

One day later I get the same response:
The address used in your listing doesn’t match the address of your business. You must list your business at its correct location.
The address DOES match the address of the business. It is listed on the website, they get mail there, it is formatted correctly, and it is staffed (small staff, but still staffed.)

Is there any way to reason with GMB Support or any way around this issue? It's like they don't listen, or the address is flagged as a whole.

We are not worried so much if search results get filtered for keywords, but this office has lots of caregivers and vendors that need to find the address by business name searches and stop by to drop off and pick up supplies, so showing up in maps for them is very important.

Thanks for any insight.
 

Colan Nielsen

Administrator
Joined
Jul 19, 2012
Messages
3,272
Hey Greg,

This is a difficult scenario because it is incredibly rare for a business to actually rent a virtual office full-time with staff there. I honestly don't think I have EVER come across that scenario.

If you are 100% confident that they qualify I would post over at the GMB forum and one of the TC's can help you out.

Let me know how it goes. Feel free to post the link to the GMB post here.
 

Greg Schueler

Member
Joined
Mar 14, 2013
Messages
140
Thanks Colan.

Regus is known for Virtual Offices, and some of them are, but they also have various sized real offices inside their suites. It's a full executive office complex. I also just heard taking pictures could help when I reapply, so working on that now.
 

Greg Schueler

Member
Joined
Mar 14, 2013
Messages
140
I would do a video vs photos. Easier to show they're there. Long term I would honestly suggest your client move though. It's likely to get suspended again.

I advise people to avoid addresses that are associated with virtual office services.
Thanks Joy, I will advise them that video is a better option.

I always warn people about the red flags when moving to these types of offices, but the Regus salesperson was apparently very vocal in saying Google has no problem with their addresses. (wrong!) ;-)
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,834
Thanks Joy, I will advise them that video is a better option.

I always warn people about the red flags when moving to these types of offices, but the Regus salesperson was apparently very vocal in saying Google has no problem with their addresses. (wrong!) ;-)
Yeah, I've heard that story a lot. You're right, they're dead wrong :/
 

Greg Schueler

Member
Joined
Mar 14, 2013
Messages
140
Update for those following...

I gathered a copy of the client's lease which shows the physical address and the room number, a copy of the floor plan that shows the layout of all the rooms/offices in the Suite, added a few images (couldn't get video) of the office with staff in the office and included a list of other companies in the same address that were live on GMB.

I also unchecked the Service Area business to hide the address, which was not what we wanted, but just an attempt to get the listing re-instated. We figured at least people could call for the address if needed. The percentage of foot traffic is smaller than phone calls.

Google approved the request and re-instated the listing. I have left the address hidden and not sure if that was the deciding factor or the proof I sent in, but at least we are showing up again.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,834
Update for those following...

I gathered a copy of the client's lease which shows the physical address and the room number, a copy of the floor plan that shows the layout of all the rooms/offices in the Suite, added a few images (couldn't get video) of the office with staff in the office and included a list of other companies in the same address that were live on GMB.

I also unchecked the Service Area business to hide the address, which was not what we wanted, but just an attempt to get the listing re-instated. We figured at least people could call for the address if needed. The percentage of foot traffic is smaller than phone calls.

Google approved the request and re-instated the listing. I have left the address hidden and not sure if that was the deciding factor or the proof I sent in, but at least we are showing up again.
Wow. Sounds as intense as a manual penalty removal request. Very well done!
 

adammaxum

Member
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
73
I'm dealing with this issue right now...


apparently ALL regus office locations are prohibited from being on GMB? Even if you're paying for an actual office space within the building.

Google has basically taken the approach to ban ALL addresses that have any hint of Regus attached to them without reviewing specific cases that prove it's not a virtual office.
 

BenFisher

Local Search Expert
Joined
Nov 19, 2015
Messages
333
Greg, you could have gone an extra step by providing proof they have a business license with that address and also a BBB Accreditation. That would have been sufficient to keep the address.

@adammaxum Virtual Offices have come under scrutiny more in the past year simply because of the abuse by many industries, lawyers being the biggest one.

I will reply to your thread on the support community and see if I can help.
 

adammaxum

Member
Joined
Jun 26, 2013
Messages
73
Greg, you could have gone an extra step by providing proof they have a business license with that address and also a BBB Accreditation. That would have been sufficient to keep the address.

@adammaxum Virtual Offices have come under scrutiny more in the past year simply because of the abuse by many industries, lawyers being the biggest one.

I will reply to your thread on the support community and see if I can help.
thanks...we can provide video and such if that would remove the suspension...we've already provided paid invoice receipts showing the locations which should be sufficient proof I'd think
 

Remedy12374

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2019
Messages
8
Joy, how does taking a video work when trying to get your suspended GMB listing re-instated. In filling out the GMB reinstatement form, it doesn't look like they allow you to attach any images or files? So how exactly does this work? Am I missing something? Please let me know. Thank you!
 

Remedy12374

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2019
Messages
8
Joy and Colan, I'm guessing a better way to handle this might be to proactively upload photos and videos to the GMB listing. I checked and surprisingly still have access to this part of my GMB listing despite the suspension. And then simply mention that I've done that in my reinstatement form request. From what I've seen, the people who get their suspension reinstatement requests denied simply receive a generic form letter that says your suspension has been denied because you are in violation of the guidelines. I don't believe you get a specific answer from someone you can reply to and send pictures and videos to? I'm not sure though.

My plan is to upload pics and a video or two of my employee working in her office, to my GMB listing. Then, I'll re-submit another reinstatement request, letting them know that I've uploaded that stuff, along with my official business license number that is registered with the Office of the Secretary of State - my official business license lists my office address that is on my GMB listing. I really hope this will be enough proof.

Thanks to both of you for your guidance on this subject!
 

Remedy12374

Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2019
Messages
8
Second what Joy said. Google will let you know if they need/want photo or video evidence. In the description section of the form you can indicate that you have photos ready to send over to them as a reminder as well.
Well, I got some advice from Joy and someone else who also indicated that using a company virtual office address will always be an issue - even if I got reinstated, I could be suspended again...is what some many people are saying.

Also, it appears that many people in my industry (resume writing service), are hiding their addresses and that seems to be working.

So, instead of providing photo and video evidence proof that I am staffed at this location, and providing by business license info which lists the virtual office address...I decided to delete the address on my suspended GMB page and fill out the reinstatement form. I was hoping that hiding my business address (even though it is counterintuitive because we are staffed at this location) would be the solution and look better in the eyes of google.

However, on the reinstatement form, it requires you to provide an address. So, I provided the same address of 3131 McKinney Avenue, Suite 600, Dallas, TX 75204. But, now I'm wondering if this will still be an issue because that address is affiliated with a virtual office? I mean, if hiding the address was all you had to do, then everyone would just rent a virtual office and hide the address, right?

I'm really thinking I should have gone with my first strategy of proving that we are local and staffed with photo and video evidence. I'm so confused as what to do next.

This has been such a difficult dilemma and I recently had to layoff 5 employees because of how much business has dropped as result of all of this.

Could really use some additional help and advice regarding path forward. Thank you!
 

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