Don’t Create a Short Name for Your Google My Business Profile
First things first. As of July 11, 2019, do NOT create a short name for your Google My Business profile.
Google is reporting that an extremely high number of businesses around the country are experiencing account suspensions as a result of adding a short name to their profile.
All they’ve said to those who have received suspensions is that it may take up to 3 weeks for their profiles to be reinstated.
Due to these major problems, we highly recommend that you wait until Google has figured out these issues before trying to update your account.
What is a Google My Business Short Name?
If your business is verified on Google My Business, you’re eligible for a Google My Business Short Name. A Google My Business Short Name is a custom name that can make your profile easier for customers to find online.
Creating a short name also creates a custom URL for your Google My Business profile.
After creating your short name, you can share that name with customers and they can search in the URL browser g.page/@ShortName to find your business quicker than ever.
How to Create a Google My Business Short Name?
When selecting your Google My Business Short Name, you want it to be as relevant to your business as possible. We recommend using the name that most customer’s refer to your business as around town.
For example, if your restaurant is officially named “Jefferson’s on Third Street” but everyone in your area calls your business “Jeff’s on Third”, that’s what you should enter as your short name – it would appear as @JeffsOnThird like an Instagram or Twitter handle.
Another way to increase the effectiveness of your Google My Business Short Name would be to include the name of the neighborhood or town where your business is located.
To expand on the previous example, if you’re restaurant is in Austin, Texas, you might select the short name @JeffsOnThirdATX or @JeffsOnThirdAustin.
Unsurprisingly, you’ll want to keep your short name, well, short. That way it’s easier to remember by customers and simpler to promote online.
How to Change Your Google My Business Short Name?
If you decide you don’t like your Google My Business Short Name anymore, you can follow the same process of creating it to change it to something new.
Beware, once you’ve switched, there’s no guarantee that short name will be available later – another business can take it.
To avoid confusion, make sure you like your short name the first time. If you’re constantly updating your short name, that can confuse customers and negatively impact your online presence.
Someone’s Google My Business Short Name is Copying My Business
If you think another business is using your name to bolster their own online reputation, you can report that short name for impersonation.
To report someone for impersonation, visit their business profile, suggest an edit and select remove this place. Choose the reason for removal, in this case impersonation, and click submit.
So, You Created a Short Name and Your Google My Business Was Suspended. Now What?
If your Google My Business profile was suspended after creating a short name, you can follow these steps to reinstate your profile.
- Review the Google My Business guidelines and restricted content guidelines.
- Review your listing for compliance with the guidelines.
- Once you’re sure your locations comply with our guidelines and include all required information, you can request for their reinstatement.
Because Google is receiving a high number of reinstatement requests as a result of this error, refrain from submitting multiple requests for the same profile. Please note that it may take up to 2-3 weeks to process your appeal.
I Created a Google My Business Short Name and My Profile Wasn’t Suspended, What Should I Do?
Congratulations! You’re one of the lucky ones. You don’t need to do anything at all.
Although, if you wanted to change your short name by following the steps above, we’d recommend waiting until Google gives the “all clear” as changing the name may result in suspension of your profile.
Want to learn more about Google My Business Short Names? Not sure if it’s safe to request a short name without risking an account suspension? Contact Blackhawk today.