How-To: Merge a Google Plus Local Place and Business Page

Google Business Page vs. Google Local Listing

By Sara Villegas

Recently, we noticed that users can now merge Google Plus Local Place pages and Google Plus Business pages. It’s a long-awaited answer to one of my biggest pet peeves about the Google Plus network, and best of all, it’s pretty easy!

One of the main frustrations we’ve had in the social media department lately is the fact that Google Plus Local Places listings and Google Plus Business Pages are separate, and are not linked to each other in any way. Google Plus Local Places, when claimed by the business owners, could house tons of company information, including photos, videos, reviews and other business details like hours of operation and contact info. Google Plus Business pages display most of the same information, minus the reviews. Both Local and Business pages factor into our SEO strategy at Fruition, which means that many of our clients have two similar but different representations of their businesses on the same platform: Google Plus.

This can be confusing to potential customers. Google Local pages are linked to to listings that come up in a Google Maps, Google Local or other location-based Google searches. Google Business pages only come up in searches on Google Plus. Customers can potentially find both pages, and be left wondering which is authentic and which one has the most up-to-date information. Meanwhile, business owners are stuck trying to manage, promote and keep information current on two profiles instead of one.

“Why on Earth,” I asked my Facebook friends one day, “Are Google Local Places and Google Plus Business Pages different things?”

No one knew. And then last week, the heavens opened up, the sun broke through and I noticed a little blue button with the magical words “Verify Now”  on a number of the Google Business pages I manage.

You may now merge redundant Google Local Places listings and Google+ Business Pages. This process will effectively combine the two pages and ensure that customers who find the business listing via a Google Maps search, location-based local search, or Google Plus search will be directed to a single page where they will have access to the most current Places information about the business, as well as the rich media, descriptions and status updates available on the Google+ Business Page.  This will also give visitors to the new page the ability to read and write reviews, which was previously only available on Google Local listings.

This means it is still important to claim and create both types of pages and then merge them, as the enhanced information will help your business show up in search results more effectively, as well as encourage more potential customers to follow the business on Google+ by joining the page’s circles.

NOTE: This only works for Google+ Business Pages that were created as Local Businesses. Pages created as “Product or Brand” or “Company or Organization” cannot be merged with Places listings.

You can verify the business page and merge the two pages through the following process:

  1. Log in to your Google Plus account and access your business page.
  2. At the top of the page, next to the page title, there will be an “Unverified” link. If you hover over this link, a “Verify Now” button will pop up. You can also get to the “Verify Now” button directly under the profile picture and map listing under the “Is This Your Business?” heading.
  3. Click this button. It will bring up the Google Places listings that match your page. If you have not claimed your Local listing, it may not show up.
  4. Select the Places listing you want to merge with your business page. You can also select “None of the above” if the Places listing is not showing up, and you can verify your page, thereby adding Places functions to the business page for the business.
  5. Click “Continue”.
  6. Enter the your name in the available form field.
  7. You will receive a postcard in the mail with a PIN number in approximately one week.
  8. Follow the link on the post card. Enter the PIN number and the business page will be verified: merged with the Google Places listing.
  9. Or, you may finish the verification process by clicking the “Enter PIN” button where the “Verify Now” button used to display.

We’re in the process of merging some pages right now. If we come across any problems or hiccups in the process, we’ll include updates here.

Need help managing your social media marketing strategy? Contact Fruition’s team of social media experts.  

Sara Villegas

Sara Villegas is Fruition’s Senior Director of Digital Marketing. While she oversees all aspects of digital marketing to ensure they’re working together for a stronger presence and better success, Sara’s passion and background are in social media management. With her finger on the pulse of social media from both the user engagement and brand management side, Sara is uniquely positioned to help organizations navigate the quickly changing waters of social.

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