Google Places Quality Guideline Update

Nyagoslav Zhekov pointed out to me that Google has recently added the following to their Google Places Guidelines:

Marketing, promotions, or other contests

Any promotion, marketing, contests, or other giveaways should clearly link to the terms of the activity and provide clear guidelines and qualifications. All such promises, given or implied, should be adhered to.

This is an odd Guideline in a number of respects. At this point there is no obvious way to run contents or giveaways on Places and even if you figured out a way to do so (via Offers or Updates) it is not clear that you would be able to include a link. I have asked Google for clarification as to what exactly this new guideline applies to.

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Google Places Quality Guideline Update by

7 thoughts on “Google Places Quality Guideline Update”

  1. I wonder if they are referring to the post that stays live on the page for 30 days..

  2. It must be as that is the only place that it might take place…although I have trouble envisioning that much abuse has taken place in that space in this regard…

  3. Mike, I don’t think the Offers Guidelines allow for throwing a contest or giveaway, so that’s why I excluded this option. The text is definitely very obscure, but it very much reminds me of some discussions in the forums around reviews, so I assume (using the Exclusion Method) it is related to Google reviews. Although now that I think about it, it might be a much more holistic update, covering everything including offers (promotions), updates (marketing), and reviews (contests and giveaways for reviews).

  4. @Nyagoslav

    That was my point but I don’t think reviews is it either as these are Places Guidelines NOT Review Guidelines… the Updates does allow for links so perhaps that is what Google was referring to…

  5. Google was probably named in some suit as a result of a contest. This language sounds a lot like lawyereez to CYA for future lawsuits.

  6. Google has confirmed that this was just for the Places update at this point. It could as Mark points out, be a compliance issue and could be related to foreign legal requirements as well.

  7. Sad news, as I got the dreaded “we-currently-do-not-support-this-location” message today after verifying a new listing… and I was thinking about having some sort of lottery contest where entrants could pick the day (or week) this new listing ‘might’ go live ;-) …sarcasm oozing from my pores…

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