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March 17, 2020

Google Review Not Showing Up? Here’s Why.

Chances are that your listing isn’t the only one that suffers from Google My Business reviews not showing up.

There isn’t one solution to this issue. However, we managed to find some solutions that could explain the sudden disappearance of a few Google reviews.

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Google My Business Listing Issues

There are a few scenarios that point to problems within a Google My Business (GMB) listing as that leads to a Google review not showing up. This is easily fixed with a few changes within the GMB listing. However, there are some scenarios where reviews don’t appear because of changes within the GMB platform.

Google (Temporarily) Disabled Reviews

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic Google is working with a limited team, which means that all listings are experiencing disabled Google reviews.

This means that customers can’t write and publish new reviews and businesses won’t be able to respond to any review on their GMB listing. However, reviews posted before Google temporarily turned off publishing will still show up on the listing.

Despite the inability to get new reviews on Google, businesses should still be asking for reviews and funneling that feedback to other review sites. When done right, this type of constant engagement helps a brand stand out and retain loyal customers, and it’s just one of the many ways businesses can adapt in uncertain times.

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Inaccurate Listing Information

An incorrect listing doesn’t just turn potential customers away; it also reduces the number of reviews a business can get after customers leave the store. Fortunately, you can easily change that by editing the Google My Business (GMB) listing information.

By clicking on the “Info” section of the GMB dashboard, you can edit important pieces of the listing’s public information such as the address, operating hours, and phone number.

You can use the “Info” section to “refresh” your location.

  1. Click on the pencil icon next to the listing’s address, and a pop-up window should appear, which includes a smaller version of Google Maps.
  2. Wiggle the map a bit and make sure the pin settles back onto the right location.
  3. Press the Apply button on the bottom of the window to save your changes.

This should refresh your business’ Google profile, which should return to normal within a few minutes. If the reviews still don’t appear, try clearing your browser’s cache.

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Duplicate Listings

You should also double-check to see if there are duplicate business listings. This might seem like Google removed a review from your listing, but it appears on an alternate listing.

You can check for duplicate listings by visiting Google Maps and search for the business location’s exact name or address.

There are multiple ways to delete these duplicate listings – such as reporting it to Google via Maps or removing the location through the GMB dashboard – but the main thing you should do to prevent the issue is by verifying the correct listing.

Same Business, New Location

If a business changes location but keeps the same name, Google should transfer the reviews to the new location, which is reflected on Google Maps.

However, if a business is heavily tied to a specific location – think hotels, golf courses, or local attractions – then Google might not automatically move the reviews.

If this is the case, send a report to Google using the Report a Problem link and provide information on your new business location.

Moving to a new location means that you might also have to re-verify the listing.

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Inactive Listings

An inactive listing also has a negative effect. Those who don’t log in to their Google My Business dashboard or shown any activity – such as post updates, upload/share photos, respond to reviews, etc. – after a “significant length of time” might lose a business’ verification status.

Without verification, a business won’t appear in Google Search or Maps, which means customers won’t see Google reviews for that business.

Google will attempt to contact you via email before it revokes the status to see if there is someone actively managing the listing. If you miss the email and the listing becomes unverified, you will need to contact support to restore the previous status.

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Google Outages

There’s also the extremely rare chance that the problem is Google itself. In the past, Google suffered from sporadic outages, which results in Google reviews not showing up for multiple businesses.

From the GMB user’s perspective, this might mean missing out on a few reviews from customers, but you can always reach out to them later via email and kindly ask for feedback. Just make sure your message includes a review link.

Brand New Listings

The early days of a business can be difficult when it comes to attracting customers, and a GMB listing can help. However, there have to be enough people that leave a review after their visit.

In fact, Google won’t show the full set of reviews until at least five people leave a review or rating of a business. This is where word-of-mouth marketing might help attract more people to specific services or products.

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Review Formatting

If the problem isn’t the listing, then the issue might be in the reviews themselves. However, GMB users don’t have as much control in terms of user-submitted feedback. The best option is to tell customers about best practices when writing any form of feedback.

Reviews Marked as Spam

Google continues to be aggressive in fighting review spam to ensure the quality of the platform, which could possibly mean that some reviews may violate Google’s Prohibited and Restricted Content guidelines.

The review can also disappear in this case when the GMB or another regular user flags the review as inappropriate. However, Google will need to look at the review in questions before deleting it from the listing.

Google can also remove reviews and responses that contain any links or URLs. However, the author of the review can quickly edit their review to omit the URL and avoid Google’s digital axe.

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Reviews from Third-party Sites

In the past, Google posted review data from sites like Yelp, Facebook, and Yahoo Local on a business’ Google listing. However, that’s no longer the case, which means that any reviews that showed up during that time from other sites are no longer part of the overall number of reviews in a listing.

In some cases, Google will sometimes still show some feedback from other reputable sites in a section called “Reviews around the Web” below the reviews by Google users, but these reviews are generated algorithmically and may not always be accurate.

Private or Deleted Reviews

There’s also the rare case that some users deleted their reviews. In previous updates, they could just mark their reviews as private so others won’t see their feedback, but that option is gone.

Reviews from any user will remain public, and the only way to make sure that no one else sees it is by deleting the review altogether.

a small cafe with a woman serving coffee

Google Reviews Not Showing Up are an Opportunity

It might seem like the end of the world when reviews disappear, but GMB users should use it as a way to get more reviews from newer customers.

A major reason why consumers ages 16-34 place trust in a business is because of its positive ratings and reviews. Furthermore, more than 92 percent of consumers will use online reviews to guide their purchase decisions. In other words, reviews are a major factor in driving revenue and retaining customers.

By continuing to request feedback and improving the customer experience, businesses can generate more reviews and utilize software to track every review coming from Google users.

Harness the power of reputation management to attract customers and grow your business.

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