There has been confusion amongst business owners, after some have received emails from Google, with a call to action to verify their listings, or face removal from Google Maps and Google + Local.
Businesses affected received an email that reads as follows:
Due to changes in Google Maps, we’d like to inform you that unless you review and confirm the information in your Google Places account, we will no longer be able to keep and show it to Google users after February 21, 2014.
As a result, on this date your listing “LISTING GOES HERE” may be deleted.
If you wish to keep your listing active, follow these three easy steps:
1. Log in to your Google Places account
2. Review and update your information
3. Click the “Submit” button
The Google Places Team
Recipients concerned by the wording of the email quickly took to Google’s Product Forums; in search of confirmation the emails were not a scam. The email’s authenticity was soon confirmed by Google’s business community manager Jade Wang. In her response, she urges businesses owners to ‘Please log into Places for Business, take a look at your business information, update it if necessary, and click “Submit.” You’ll need to do this for all listings in your account by February 21, 2014, so they can stay on Google Maps. Otherwise, you’ll need to add your business information and undergo PIN verification using Google Places again.’ The full thread can be read here.
Those who are concerned the email has gone into a Spam folder still have ample time to check whether or not Google requires action from them. It is still unclear exactly who has been contacted by Google. Therefore, our advice is for Google Places users to check their inbox as soon as possible and follow the simple instructions, if they have received such an email.