Why Is My Business Not Showing Up on Google? [+ Solutions]


Why Is It Important for Businesses to Show Up on Google?

For customers to find your business online, ranking on Google is key. Because 49% of shoppers start their search for a product or service on Google. 

Google not only dominates local business searches. It’s also the gateway for global exposure. Making your business discoverable by Google allows the search engine to direct both local and international customers to your site.

Considering that approximately 74% of in-store shoppers search online for store-related information before visiting, online visibility is vital for your business. 

To boost online visibility, optimize your website for search engines—using relevant keywords and a mobile-friendly design—and maintain an accurate, up-to-date business listing. 

That’s where your Google Business Profile, or GBP, comes in. It looks like this:

Google Business Profile for "Royal Bathrooms"

This profile pops up when someone looks you up or searches for your products or services on Google Search or Google Maps. Bridging the gap between an online presence and your store’s physical location.

Why Is It Important for Businesses to Show Up on Google Maps?

Although consumers rely heavily on online organic searches to find local businesses, Google Maps has an added advantage because it addresses local search queries specifically. 

Say you provide dry cleaning services. When someone searches for dry cleaning in their area on Google Maps, they’ll be able to see a listing with your address, hours of operation, and contact details. All pulled from the information you entered into your Google Business Profile. 

Visibility and accessibility on Google Maps complements your GBP, local, and overall SEO strategy. 

While a general Google Search helps users discover your business online, Google Maps targets those searching in your immediate area and vicinity—effectively capturing local demand.

Google Maps results for "dry cleaners"

Essentially, showing up on Google Maps can significantly increase your business’s foot traffic and local sales.

Further reading: 8 Google Maps Marketing Tactics to Drive Local Business

Your business will be visible only if you set up your Google Business Profile correctly. If you’ve created one but still aren’t showing up on Google, there may be many reasons why. 

Possible Reasons Why Your Business Isn’t Showing Up on Google

1. You Need to Claim an Existing Business Profile

Your business might not appear on Google Maps if you still need to claim your GBP listing. 

An unclaimed listing means the business information is present on Google Maps but still needs to be verified or managed by the business owner. 

Both claiming and verifying your business listing are essential for managing your online presence and ensuring the accuracy of your information. 

To check and claim ownership of your business, follow some simple steps: 

Step 1: Sign in to GBP 

Log in to GBP on your desktop or the mobile app using your Google Account. Click the Google apps button next to your profile icon, and find “Business Profile Manager” in the top-right corner of the menu.

“Business Profile Manager” selected from Google apps

Step 2: Claim existing ownership of a verified Google Business Profile

If you own and have verified your business, Google will redirect you to the GBP dashboard. If not, move on to step three to claim your business.

Step 3: Access your business profile

Search for your business name and location on Google.com. If your profile appears on the right-hand side, click “Own this business?

“Own this business?” link highlighted under "Arnos Cleaners" business on Google

Step 4: Request for claim 

A prompt will appear on the screen. Click “Manage now.”

“Manage now" selected for "Arnos Cleaners" business

If someone else has already claimed this business, you might see something like this:

"Someone else mat manage this Business Profile" screen

Click “Request Access.” Google will then ask about your level of ownership.

"Request access to manage this business" form in GBP

Fill in the required fields, and tick the option to let the business owner see your details.

If you don’t select this option, you won’t be able to move forward. Once done, hit “Submit.”

Submit your request to Google

You will then get a confirmation prompt. And a date of when you should get ownership of your business profile if the current owner doesn’t respond.

Click “Done” and wait until you get access to your GBP.

"Request sent" screen on Google

Further reading: Request ownership of a Business Profile by Google Support.

Step 5: Verify business ownership 

After you click “Manage now,” the app will prompt you to provide ownership information.

Depending on your business type and circumstances, you may get instant validation or receive a verification code.

"Enter your verification code" screen in GBP

If a verification code is required, you may receive it via regular mail, email, or text. Enter the code into your Google Business dashboard to complete verification.

Then, you’ll gain full ownership of your Google Business Profile.

2. Your Listing Is Not Verified on Google Maps 

Google prioritizes verified businesses to ensure reliability and accuracy in its listings.

Verification can be a part of the initial setup process or it can be completed afterward for existing profiles.

To verify your existing Google Business Profile, follow these steps:

  • Log in: Access your profile at google.com/business and follow Google’s verification steps
  • Verification method: Choose a verification option (phone, text, email, or video)
  • Enter the code: Follow the instructions to verify, typically entering a code sent to you
  • Review period: Verification reviews can take up to seven business days
  • Confirmation: Once verified, you’ll receive a confirmation of your profile’s status

Here’s a video that sums up the GBP verification steps:

Youtube video thumbnail

Further Reading: Learn more about setting up a Google Business Profile.

3. Your Website Is Not Optimized 

Effective website optimization plays a significant role in enhancing your business’s visibility in organic search results. Which positively influences how your business appears on both Google Maps and Search. 

Google’s algorithms consider various factors on a website to determine its relevance and authority. Like relevant content, mobile-friendliness, and user experience. These factors contribute to how well your business ranks in organic search results. 

A higher ranking in search results can lead to better visibility in local searches, including on Google Maps.

It’s a key step toward improving your online visibility, particularly if you’re a new business with a limited online presence

Efforts to optimize both your website and Google Business Profile are interconnected, as both elements can contribute to your overall online visibility.

Here’s a quick optimization checklist for your website:

  1. Homepage clarity: Make sure your homepage clearly explains your business and offerings
  2. Regular updates: Keep your website updated with relevant information about your products and services 
  3. SEO: Follow SEO best practices sitewide, including using relevant keywords, meta tags, and mobile-friendly design

Consider Ruth’s Nutrition’s GBP as an example. 

Ruth’s Nutrition’s Google Business Profile with "health food store" category highlighted

The business uses similar keywords across its profile and website to connect both platforms.

Ruth’s Nutrition’s website with "health food store" keyword highlighted

4. Your Website Uses Too Few, Too Many, or the Wrong Keywords

Using too few keywords may lead to poor discoverability. Using irrelevant or incorrect keywords can attract the wrong audience. Or no audience at all.

Consider The Philadelphia Flower Market, which often appears in the top search results for the keyword “florist shop” for users located in that city. 

The Philadelphia Flower Market appears in the top search results for "florist shop" search

The website content includes a variation of the specific search query, “flower shop.”

By including relevant keywords in its website content, The Philadelphia Flower Market aligns more closely with users’ search intent. And signals a relevant connection to search engines.

Meanwhile, the GBP listing uses the terms “florist,” “flowers,” and “market.” 

“florist,” “flowers,” and “market" keywords highlighted in The Philadelphia Flower Market description

This keyword strategy helps the brand consistently maximize its visibility across Google Maps and Search.

To add keywords to your GBP, include them in your business description, updates, and posts. So your profile reflects the search terms your potential customers are using.

Further reading: Find out all about How to Add Keywords to a Google My Business Profile

Overusing keywords—keyword stuffing or spamming—makes your content awkward to read. Not a recommended practice. 

A high keyword density hurts the user experience and can lead to search engine penalties. Keep your keyword usage relevant to help users find exactly what they need, enhancing their search experience and your site’s credibility.

5. Your Business Isn’t Relevant to the Search Query

Users form an opinion about your website within approximately 50 milliseconds, influencing their decision to stay or leave. If your content is irrelevant to a user’s search query, they likely won’t stick around.

Which can impact your website’s bounce rate. 

A high bounce rate signals to Google that your content may not be relevant or useful for that query, potentially affecting your visibility in search results.

Follow these key steps to align your content with your target customers’ needs:

  1. Identify the keywords your audience uses by leveraging the Keyword Magic Tool
  2. Update your website content to include these keywords, ensuring it remains informative, useful, and relevant
  3. Optimize your Google Business Profile with these keywords and keep your business information up to date
  4. Regularly refresh your site and GBP profile content. You’ll improve the user experience. And inform search engines that your business is actively engaging with customers and meeting their needs.

6. Your Social Media Doesn’t Enhance Your Online Presence

Optimization here means ensuring your social media profiles are active and up to date, and that they showcase your business effectively. Linking these profiles to your Google Business Profile plays a key part in this. 

You’ll not only ensure platform consistency, but also make it easier for customers to find accurate information about your business across the web.

7. You’re Not Growing Your Google Reviews

Google Business Profile reviews can build consumer trust. Address both positive and negative reviews—it lets Google (and your customers) know you care. 

Additionally, reviews can boost your visibility in search results. 

GBP reviews directly influence your local SEO, as Google considers them indicators of your business’s credibility and relevance. 

Reviews containing the right keywords help Google understand your business’s relevance to specific search queries. This can enhance your ranking in local search results, making your business more visible to potential customers.

Google says GBP was inspired by the need to connect businesses with their customers. Customer feedback and reviews are one way to build these valuable relationships.

For example, when searching for the best burgers in California in Google, Original Tommy’s World Famous Hamburgers appears at the top. 

The listing highlights its food options and prominently displays customer reviews. 

Original Tommy’s World Famous Hamburgers appears at the top of search results for "best burger place in california"

This visibility, bolstered by regular reviews and business responses that build customer trust, contributes to its high local ranking on Google.

8. You’re Not Keeping Your Website Fresh with New Content

Regularly updating your website with new content signals to search engines that your business is active and worth featuring in search results.

For example, the University of Pennsylvania updates its annual cost structure on its GBP so prospective students can easily see it.

"Average annual cost" section of University of Pennsylvania's GBP

9. Your Local Market Is Highly Competitive

In a crowded local market, businesses may struggle to appear prominently on Google due to intense competition for the same keywords and customer attention.

Focus on niche keywords that specifically relate to your unique offerings. To help your business appear in more targeted searches where there’s less competition. 

Understanding Google’s search ranking factors, like proximity and relevance, is also key. Proximity refers to how close your business is to the searcher. Relevance relates to how well your business matches the search intent. 

Google’s algorithm for Business Profiles considers these factors, along with your content’s uniqueness and engagement level, to determine rankings.

To stand out, consider these strategies:

  • Create Google Posts: Regularly update your profile with GBP posts to share special offers, events, or news. This keeps your profile active and engaging, encouraging further customer interaction and retention.
  • Engage through Q&A: Actively manage and respond to questions in your profile’s Q&A section. This offers valuable information to potential customers and demonstrates active engagement with your audience.
  • Showcase user-generated content (UGC): Encourage customers to share photos of your products or services. UGC can enhance the authenticity of your profile and provide social proof.
  • Implement local SEO best practices: Beyond basic SEO, focus on nuances like local keywords and local partnership mentions. Semrush’s Position Tracking tool helps you track local SEO performance compared to your competitors.
  • Engage in community building: Participate in local events and sponsorships, then showcase these activities on your Google Business Profile. Active participation shows your commitment to the community and can increase your local relevance.

For example, U.K. company Royal Bathrooms enjoys visibility in local search results for the term “bathroom supply store Cradley.” 

The business also updates customers with Google Posts to share updated product listings, special offers, and events. Which maintains its profile engagement. 

Royal Bathrooms's products and Google Posts

Plus, it uses the Q&A feature and invites UGC submissions—which humanizes the brand.

Royal Bathrooms's "Is there any way to prevent getting water spots on my glass shower enclosure?" question under Q&A section

10. Your NAP Info Is Incorrect or Inconsistent Across the Web

Inaccurate or inconsistent Name, Address, and Phone Number (NAP) information across the web may confuse customers. More importantly, this inconsistency can negatively impact your search engine visibility and rankings. 

How does this work?

Local SEO impact: Google uses NAP information to verify the legitimacy and relevance of your business for local searches. Inconsistent NAP data across different sites makes it difficult for Google’s algorithms to ascertain the accuracy of your business information. Potentially lowering your rankings in local search results, including on Google Maps.

Organic search influence: Search engines rely on consistent NAP information to validate the authenticity of a business. So they favor businesses with coherent, reliable information—which contributes to better organic search rankings. Consistent NAP details can therefore build your business’s online credibility.

Regularly auditing your online presence helps maintain NAP accuracy. See that your NAP information is uniform across all online platforms—including major directories like Google Business Profile, Yelp, and Bing Places. Plus industry-specific directories such as TripAdvisor or Zocdoc.

Here’s how you can update your NAP info:

Audit your current listings: Conduct an audit of all platforms where your business appears. This can include your website, GBP, social media profiles, local directories, and industry-specific listings.

Make a list of all discrepancies: Note any inconsistencies in your business name, address, and phone number across these platforms

Update your Google Business Profile: Log in to your Google Business Profile and check that your NAP information is accurate. Google often serves as a primary source for other directories.

Revise information on your website: Ensure your contact information is consistent and up to date on your website, especially on the contact page and in the footer

Contact other platforms: For platforms where you cannot edit information directly, contact the site administrators or use tools to request NAP updates

Use listing management tools: Managing this information across different channels can get tricky without the right tools. That’s where Semrush’s Listing Management comes in.

Semrush’s Listing Management tool

Effortlessly distribute and keep track of key details on up to 72 business listings. The tool even lets you update all your listings simultaneously.

Regular monitoring: Regularly review your listings to ensure consistency. Promptly reflect any changes in location or contact details across all platforms.

Claim your business listing

Claiming your business listing is an important step in managing your NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) information on platforms where you don’t have direct control. 

This process is slightly different from updating your NAP details on platforms you own, like your website or your Google Business Profile. 

Here’s how it works.

Find your business on external platforms: Search for your business on various local directories, review sites, and other platforms where your business might be listed

Claim your listing: Many of these sites allow business owners to claim their business listing. The process usually involves confirming you’re the rightful owner or representative by providing some form of business verification—which can vary from platform to platform.

Update your NAP information: Once you’ve claimed your listing, update your NAP details.

For unclaimable listings: If a platform does not offer a claim option, reach out to the site administrators directly. Provide them with proof of the accurate NAP information and request an update.

11. You Haven’t Updated Your New Business Information on GBP

Forgetting to update your business information on your Google Business Profile can lead Google to suspend or potentially remove your business listing altogether. 

That could significantly impact your visibility. And your customers’ ability to find accurate information about your business. 

So, if your business relocates or your information changes, update your profiles and listings promptly. 

Sign in to GBP to change your address on Google Search and Maps. Search for your business name and click “Edit profile.” 

“Edit profile" option selected under Google dashboard

Select the “Location” tab and click the edit (pencil) icon.

Pencil icon highlighted next to "Business location" field

Make the necessary changes. Remember to click “Save” after each update.

"Business location" page on Google with "Save" button highlighted

12. You Lack Location Authority

Establishing location authority means search engines trust and recognize your business as a reliable source for location-specific searches. This trust is crucial for your business to appear prominently in local search results on Google. 

The key is to show search engines that your business is a trusted source for location-specific searches. Focus on these key actions:

  • Provide accurate and up-to-date location (NAP) information across various online platforms—including GBP, your website, and other local directories. 
  • Show search engines that your business is a trusted, authoritative source for your specific location. Through regular updates, customer review management, and online engagement with local customers.

13. You Share an Office Space

When multiple businesses at the same address have similar or overlapping information, they can confuse Google’s algorithm—potentially affecting how and where your business appears in search results. The results can also confuse users.

Here are some tips to differentiate your business listing from others that share the same space:

  1. Distinct names: Ensure your business has a unique and distinguishable name
  2. Separate contact information: Provide individual phone numbers and email addresses
  3. Unique Google profiles: Create different GBP accounts for clear online visibility
  4. Accurate online directories: Ensure your listing in directories like GBP and Yelp includes specific details like suite numbers or individualized contact information

14. Your Business Address Isn’t Properly Set Up on Your Listing

If Google or customers find discrepancies in your address information, it may lead to confusion and negatively affect your search rankings.

To ensure your address is accurately represented on your profile, review and update it regularly. 

Sign in to the Google account associated with your GBP. Type “my business” into the Google search bar, and your business will appear. 

Check your business address. If you can’t see it, click “View profile.”

"View profile" button highlighted next to a business

It will take you to the GBP dashboard. From here, click “Edit profile” to edit, add, or update your business address.

You can also review information like your contact details, business hours, and “More.” 

"Business information" page on GBP dashboard

When you’re done, scroll down and click “Save.”

Use the Listing Management tool to keep your business details accurate, up-to-date, and consistent—preventing discrepancies that may impact your online visibility.

15. Your GBP Listing Doesn’t Have Category Tags

Category tags describe the nature of your business—for instance, “restaurant,” “clothing store,” and “plumber.” They help Google understand what your business does and categorize it appropriately in search results.

Without category tags, your business might not show up in relevant Google Maps and organic searches. Which reduces its online visibility and potential to attract customers.

Here is how to update your category tags:

Sign in to GBP. Click “Edit Profile” from your GBP dashboard, followed by the edit icon next to the “Business category” section.

"Business category" section highlighted under "Business information" page

Select the categories that best fit your business. You can choose one primary category and up to nine secondary ones.

Chestnut Jewelry and Accessories used the “jewelry store” category tag. So when someone searches for a jewelry shop or store, the business has a higher likelihood of appearing in the search results.

“jewelry store” category highlighted under "Chestnut Jewelry & Accessories" GBP

16. Your GBP Listing Is Suspended 

If Google takes action against your GBP account, your listing will no longer appear in Google Maps or local search results. This lack of visibility can significantly impact your potential customer reach.

Common reasons for listing suspension include violations of GBP terms of service. Like providing incorrect information, creating multiple listings for the same business location, and engaging in fraudulent activities. 

You’ll receive an email or notification in your GBP account informing you of Google’s decision. The good news: you can appeal it.

First, see why Google has penalized your account. 

"Your business profile has been suspended" message in Google

To investigate further, consult the Google Business Profile Support Community.

Google Business Profile Help Community page

Provide comprehensive details such as your: 

  • Business name
  • Address
  • Website URL
  • Screenshots from your GBP dashboard

Add tangible proof of your business’s existence, like signage or vehicle images. So you can get an in-depth assessment by volunteer product experts or community members.

Next, fill out the reinstatement form with the necessary information. 

Youtube video thumbnail

If you don’t hear back right away, don’t panic. Your request could be under review.

Monitor your email and your listing for notifications. If Google reinstates your GBP, wait a few days before making edits to avoid the risk of re-suspension.

17. You Lack GBP Content

An incomplete GBP may lead Google’s algorithm to perceive your business as less relevant, potentially lowering your ranking in search results. 

Additionally, customers seeking specific details may overlook your business if key information is missing. 

Fill in all sections of your profile, including business hours and photos, and add a compelling business description. 

Incomplete information appears as empty sections, as shown in the example below:

"Add missing information" section highlighted under GBP

18. Your GBP Listing Ranking Isn’t High

Your GBP listing ranking determines how visible your business is to potential customers searching online. It refers to the position of your business in Google’s search results, particularly in local online searches and on Google Maps. 

If your listing ranks low, you’re less likely to be seen by users—which can have a significant impact on your business’s online discovery and resulting traffic.

To check and improve your GBP listing ranking, follow these steps:

  • Check your current ranking manually: Perform searches for relevant business keywords on Google Maps, and note where your business appears in the results
  • Use a tracking tool: Run the Position Tracking tool for detailed insights into your GBP ranking across different locations and various search queries. Get a comprehensive view of your performance and track changes over time.
  • Monitor changes: Regularly revisit your ranking for different keywords and adjust your strategy accordingly

What to Do if None of the Above Solutions Work 

If you apply the solutions we’ve outlined and still experience issues, contact GBP support

Google’s experts can provide personalized advice to address your concerns and resolve your problems quickly. So you can focus on making your business stand out online.

Boost Your Visibility on Google Search and Maps

Optimize your website and Google Business Profile with our guide to improve your presence on both Google Search and Maps. This dual approach enhances your online visibility. And attracts more potential customers. 

Semrush tools can support your efforts by optimizing your SEO and local search strategies, leading to increased traffic and growth.

Sign up for a free Semrush account now to start boosting your Google visibility.



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