In the last 10 days, I have received two phone calls with a very official sounding recorded messages. Something along these lines:
“This is an important call from your local Google My Business expert. Your business is not claimed and verified with Google My Business, which means it is not showing up in local Google search results. For your website to appear in local rankings, you must claim and verify your Google My Business profile. Press 1 to speak to your Google My Business expert.”
I pressed 1 and an “expert” greeted me and began to ask questions. I did my best to play along.
“What profile are you talking about? What do I need to do?”
“Your Google My Business profile is not verified, so you are not showing up in local search results. We can ensure that your profile is claimed and verified so that you are maximizing visitor traffic to your website.
What is your business? Translation? Let me do a quick search… I don’t see you anywhere in the rankings.” He lists off the top 5 local search results for Austin.
“Most of my clients are not in Austin. Why should I be concerned about local searches?”
“If you’re not showing up in Austin, you’re not showing up anywhere.”
“How much is it to get my profile claimed and verified?”
“It’s $199 for the first month and $99 a month thereafter.”
“What do you do after the first month?”
“We guarantee your website will be on Page 1 of Google within 3 months. Let me take a look a look at your website.”
He then went to my website and began to chuckle.
“Ah Mike, I see. You offer SEO services.”
(Nervous laughs) “Okay, I get it.” (Click)
It’s true that you need a claimed and verified Google My Business profile. But don’t be frightened into a scam like this.
Claiming and verifying your Google+ business page is free. If you need assistance, send me an email at email@example.com.