Google Pre-Announces Plus Features for Bulk

Alert reader Nico has  pointed out that Google has publicly committed to the rollout of Plus features for bulk upload users on their Help Pages.

We’ve listened carefully to your feedback. In the future, you’ll be able to:

  • Make updates and posts to your customers using the Google+ page for your location
  • See Insights to help you track your business’s performance on Google
  • Filter to view relevant subsets of locations within your account

Google almost never publicly talks about futures which implies that this feature might be closer than we had thought. It certainly is a last, remaining brick for the foundation of Google Local being built on top of Plus. It is critical to have parity across all local pages and this would offer that missing feature to bulk users.

In other news, Google confirmed that with the most recent upgrade to the Bulk accounts, listings will be locked from being dual claimed. This means that 1)listings will be more secure and 2)bulk users will not be able to selectively upgrade specific bulk uploaded listings to Plus (which many have been doing) UNTIL the above feature is released.

Please consider leaving a comment as your input will help me (& everyone else) better understand and learn about local.
Google Pre-Announces Plus Features for Bulk by

15 thoughts on “Google Pre-Announces Plus Features for Bulk”

  1. I’m very excited to see this announcement from Google. I’m even more excited, er..curious to see what the reaction is, if any, from all the corporations that have all their agents on these massive feeds, knowing that a large chunk of them are also managing their G+ Local on an individual level.

    Who will win/earn control?

  2. @Colan
    It will certainly be a mess for a while. I believe that those that have already created Plus pages will be given the nod in this battle. But once the dust settles I think, given that Plus is multi user, that it makes sense that they cooperate and one side gives the other a management role.

  3. @ Mike

    I’ve been noticing the last few months clients who have been merged into the new dashboard with multiple locations have been losing their postal code being display both in the front end (knowledge graph) and in the back end. I try and re-add the postal code, and hit save (says may take 3 days for the changes to go live) but it won’t stick.

    Have you noticed this at all with ZIP codes in the states? I know postal codes are huge here, because they indicate which ‘zone’ the client is in and effects where the map marker is placed, even though you can move it manually.

    Case in point – http://goo.gl/MLlxnX

    No postal code in front end, no postal code in back end. I’ve tried numerous times to add it.

    Any thoughts?

  4. Hi Andew, I’ve had this come up on my forum a few times. In fact oddly enough just today with another counseling listing.

    The cases I’ve seen, were single locations, not bulk. So I’m not sure the situation is due to bulk per se.

    Without really researching much, I was writing it off as similar to the bug folks have had where they just can’t get suite to stick in dash. As soon as you submit it reverts back to no suite.

    However the good news, is in one case at my place, the client dropped out of the ranking. I told the consultant the only thing I could see wrong with the listing was that it was missing Zip. She had not even noticed it was missing. I told her to call support. Support fixed. Client popped back into the pack.

    So I’d call support.

  5. @ Linda

    Thanks for your response. Funny you say it about non bulk listings as well, since we have a couple of clients having the same issue, where unit numbers aren’t sticking either.

    Do you know, using the new dashboard if the unit number should be on a second line, or before the address?

    I guess I’ll call support, as it appears to be a bug.

    Any thoughts?

  6. Hey Linda,

    Thanks I’ll give them a shout early this week.

    Also, reading through your post, I found it interesting that you were mentioning un-verified / duplicate listings in the new dashboard. It’s interesting that the new dashboards has a ‘history’ of all your account action, including the un-verified and duplicate listings that are marked as ‘you cannot edit as this was marked as a duplicate’.

    I was un-aware you could delete these junk listings, but I just did as a couple of our clients had 2 to 3 ‘junk’ dupe listing. I’ve deleted these, and I’ll see if anything happens – I didn’t know it could interfere with your active listing – thoughts?

  7. @Andrew
    These uneditable, unverified listings in your dashboard are really just an artifact of how Google made the transition from the old Places to the new Places/Plus.

    Previously both environments (old Places and Plus) were able able to send data to the canonical listing. Now that the old dashboard has been nuked, effectively Google is just saying that the old listing can no longer provide data to the cluster.

    Thus having an unverified listing is just a reflection of that editing transition and not anything in and of itself that could impact current listings.

  8. @ Mike

    Thanks for the response, this is pretty much what I figured.

    I went through our own personal account, and we had a couple of junk listings, which I manually deleted. Your thoughts on keeping them around, as opposed to deleting them?

    I think I’m going to write a blog post on this, as I know I’m not the only one experiencing this :P

  9. @Andrew
    They are strictly an artifact of the process. There seems little value in keeping them around. The deletion messaging is scary but does nothing.

    Before deleting, you should make sure that the there aren’t duplicates in the index and that the listing to be deleted doesn’t lead to one of them. We have seen cases where that has happened and the deletion has lead to problems. Usually not but worth checking before you delete.

  10. Andrew I’ve dubbed them remnant listings and there is a very slight risk that if someone searches for the brand in Google+ and finds 8 listings, 6 of them junk remnant listings, they could possibly if they are not savvy follow the wrong one. So if you like to keep things tidy I’d clean them up.

    There’s a great screenshot and discussion here: http://localsearchforum.catalystemarketing.com/google-local/16232-found-bunch-duplicate-g-business-pages.html

  11. I’m very excited to see an upgrade to the way Google handles bulk fed data. Since Google implemented the “one-page-one-owner” rule, our bulk listings have rampant “Ownership” conflicts. This has been an absolute nightmare for the clients that did not implement a policy for who is authorized to manage the online business listing presence for their franchises. There have been a ton of listings that have inconsistent NAP data as well as poorly optimized business categories, descriptions, etc, that ultimately negatively impacts the search visibility on a massive scale.

    I can’t stress enough how important it is for national brands to have effective communication with their individual location managers. Hopefully as they upgrade the platform there will be less need for micromanaging store locations and give the ownership power to the centralized bulk verified accounts.

  12. @Stephen
    I agree. But the problems will continue for some time particularly in those bulk accounts that allowed the listings to be upgraded to Plus using some other login.

    I assume that the other login “owns” the listing not the bulk user. How Google will resolve ownership in that environment is not clear.

    But on the plus side (no pun intended), once Google upgrades bulk with social features, a model for rational management can take place that allows the bulk owner to deal with core data and allows management of a Page to be shared with the local person.

    Again it will require thought and communication but it hopefully will be a much improved model.

  13. Hey Mike,

    there has been an update to the announcement page (https://support.google.com/business/answer/6002011?hl=en)

    It now lists

    Manage access to your locations by adding and removing managers and transferring location ownership – New!

    as a new feature for upgraded accounts!

    There is also a new help page about adding and removing admins: https://support.google.com/business/answer/4669095?hl=en

    And a new help page about transferring account management (i.e. using a different Google account for managing bulk uploads): https://support.google.com/business/answer/4669093?hl=en

    And a new one about transferring ownership on a per location basis: https://support.google.com/business/answer/4669094?hl=en

    And another one about requesting ownership on a per location basis: https://support.google.com/business/answer/4646651?hl=en

    I think Google is getting serious! :)

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