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Should I Hide My Business Address on Google?

Is it better to show your business address or not on your Google listing? If you are a service area business then the answer is . . . listen to this week's podcast! There are some real cons to hiding your business address on Google that you should know.  

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Jamie:    All right, Adam.


Adam:    Hey Jamie.


Jamie:    Oh my gosh. You have picked a topic this week that I think everyone's going to be super excited about.


Adam:    Maybe we'll see. It's not a, snoozer.


Jamie:    Alright.


Adam:    Tell me in 10 minutes.


Jamie:    Okay.


Adam:    I have to wake you up.


Jamie:    Nap time.


Adam:    Ooh, actually I'd like some input anyway. I would love to hear actually to talk about and hear your thoughts on this question. Should I hide my business address on Google? This is a question I've gotten many times from businesses that serve a wide area. So they, they serve a whole County. Their trucks go all over the place doing, you know, roofers, plumbers, those kinds of fence contractors, any of those, they have a big service area and they ask, Hey, should I have my address listed on Google on that? You know, your Google listing. Now my usual answer is, well, do you are you a service area? Business? That's number one. Usually they are. So if they're asking that question, number two is is your address the one that it's on there? Is that your house now? If the answer is yes, it's my house. That's a, an obvious violation of Google's terms of service. So that's very easy to get you kicked off Google in terms of your listing or get your listing suspended. Any of your competitors can go in their report that using the suggest and edit button and Google will almost instantly suspend that location if it's a private residence. Right?


Jamie:    Okay. Yeah. So, but why there's so many houses and so many businesses are run out of people's homes?


Adam:    Uh I don't know why.


Jamie:    Oh my gosh, Google.


Adam:    All I know is when we see it it's, it's it's a, it's an easy way to get another business suspended. So your competitors, if they see that's your home address, or even a, an address that is for your business, but looks like a home from the outside. If you don't have signage on the outside, that's another one of the Google rules. You have to have permanent signage. If you don't have signage out there, then they, then it can get suspended really easy. All right.


Jamie:    So Google does not want any home-based business.


Adam:    Yes. And it also wants those with a service area to be a service area business. Now, unfortunately, there's been a bunch of studies about this. And what we found is that if you have a brick and mortar business and a service area business in the same area, about 24% to 20 to 36%, more people are going to go to that brick and mortar listing. Google is going to show that listing between 24 and 34% more likely to show that listing than the, than the service area business. So that equates to, you know, it could equate to thousands of calls over the course of a year. So this is something, if you have a service area business, you should really, really understand hiding your address is good. We recommend if you have any kind of business, of course, it doesn't really matter if it's, as long as it's a business using that address, don't hide your address. Even if customers don't really go there, it's the ability to meet a customer during our business hours at that location. That's the key phrase in their terms of service.


Jamie:    Ah, I disagreed, but you disagree with Google or you disagree with all these policy because there are, I mean, especially during these COVID times, you're going to send someone to a business that's most likely closed or isn't, you cannot have the general public end. So yeah. Yeah. There's only been going on for seven, eight months now. I know a big surprise, but it's crazy that Google would anyway, so I disagree. That's what I'll say.


Adam:    Okay. So the alternative to this of having your address is we've talked about it before is using a virtual workspace or a, sorry, a shared workspace, go there, get your address there. Then you can add all the things that you need. Listen to that other podcast about how to set up an address for your business, but just understand that it's really, really important in my opinion, anyway, if you're in a very competitive industry to have a physical brick and mortar address listed on your Google listing, there is another reason why when we have a, when we take over a client and we're going to take, do improve their visibility online, one of our steps in that process and it's ongoing is registering that business with different directories and local directories and different services that list our client's name, address, and phone number. We did an episode about name, address, and phone number, the nap, and why it's really important. It is extremely important. And if you can't have that name, no address, phone number, then those, a lot of those listings and those directories don't let you proceed without that address information listed. So that's really, really a great way to get your presence and your visibility to grow. It is to get your S your site and your business listed on those directories, because they're just links back to your Google, my business page, or your your website, and they all need your address.


Jamie:    Still disagree, but thank you.


Adam:    Okay.


Jamie:    You have not convinced me to put my address. So I have a home-based business and boy do. I would never list my, we have so many cuckoo berries out there that would love to come and talk and pound on the front door to to get to us. So yes, we've had on the internet.


Adam:    We've had clients who have had their address listed, like at their friend's office, and then solicitors have come in and said, where's that? Where's that guy at? I gotta, I gotta sell him whatever I'm selling and get, get upset. So that's why getting a shared workspace kind of eliminates those if, but if you don't have sorry, if you have a service area business, then yeah. It's something that will help your ranking for citations or directory listings. They all generally require some kind of address. And so, yeah, not just your city, but your address and the more of those that we have, the stronger your presence on Google becomes. And the more likely you will rise in the rankings. So that's really, those are the two big reasons why one Google prioritizes those businesses with an address, and then to the citations and those local directory directories oftentimes need it. They require it. And so that's why we do it just like a, you know, if you had a Yelp, Yelp does the same, they prioritize, they want you to have an address. If you don't you can hide it. Yelp is a little different, sorry, I shouldn't have, I shouldn't have said Yelp, but yeah, Facebook they want you to have an address, a lot of these local directories, they would definitely want you to have an address.


Jamie:    Well, I just thought of a great solution. Okay. All right. So you can list your local address, just dig a moat in front. Would it fill it with alligators Paranas and great white sharks? And then when you're bombarded with solicitors and with crazy people, you can just drop them right into the boat.


Adam:    There you go. American Ninja warrior style.


Jamie:    Yeah, that's right. If they can cross the boat


Adam:    In 30 seconds.


Jamie:    Okay, Google, I'm going to add you on this and you need to fix this because this is crazy, especially in these COVID times, and you can have people coming to your, your store or your location and, you know, spreading the COVID you're irresponsible.


Adam:    Yes. And I, what I also have had is clients come back and say, Hey, I hit my address. My service area is all of the West coast. Why is not my listing, not showing up. And basically, you know, because you're competing with every business throughout California, Oregon, Washington. So it's going to be really tough for you to come up with that in that kind of a competitive sector. If you're, especially, if you're in a competitive industry, it's just, there's too much. So if you're a lawyer, you know, you have an office, I know you want your service area to be all of California, but get real, make sure that, you know, your service area is really, you know, you know, in your County or in your city even. So just make an address, you know, say on the, on the services or sorry, the service area you want to just put in your city or your County. So be realistic. I know we all want clients from all over the world. So, but you know, realistically it's not going to happen. So if you can get a physical address, do so shared workspaces. You know, I, I, in California, there are whatever 75 or a hundred bucks a month. It's not that big of a deal. And it will come back in that 24% more calls than your competitors, just because you have a physical address. So my recommendation is do it. Hmm. There you go.


Jamie:    Your podcast. So thanks Jamie. Next week will be how to not have a physical address and still get Google results. Oh


Adam:    Yeah, we can do that. We'll think about it. I'll think about It. You can still do it.


Jamie:    I'll submit my idea. My my idea for a topic online at local SEO in 10 on our Facebook page or a fan page, and then make sure I will definitely write a review on this podcast because I give it five stars. Google, no stars. So,


Adam:    Hey, there is no Google listing. Is there?


Jamie:    Yeah, we should make one. That'd be very funny.


Adam:    I don't know. How do I verify it?


Jamie:    Yeah. And how do I get to their home address? Although I would like to talk to Google anyway, just like Yelp.


Adam:    Yelp is a two-star business.


Jamie:    That high pretty good. That algorithm very efficient. Yes. All right. So make sure to rate and review anything else you want to leave us with.


Adam:    That's all I got for today. Thanks everybody. Talk to you next week.