Battling Google Places Quality Guidelines

For several months, I seemed to have the Mammoth Media entry existing quite happily on Google Places (formerly known as “Local Business Centre”). Then at some point it stopped being displayed, and I couldn’t figure out why – the request was denied with the message that we didn’t meet their “quality guidelines”. Unfortunately, this is a large, somewhat vague document (available here), so it was quite frustrating that they didn’t explicitly list which part of these guidelines were actually being violated.

I was just trying to do a very simple entry with nothing fancy – just the company name, address, website, phone number, plus some of the other defaults. Still had no luck, and I could see many other people were having the same problem. I left it in frustration for a few months and came back to it thinking a fresh perspective might help.

I finally realised that it might be having weirdness issues because I had created the ‘Places’ entry under my own personal Gmail account, rather than one that was bound to the domain that I was listing in the entry. After that, I tried using a generic Google account with a email address, went through the authorisation process, and bam – it was up and working instantly.

I am not sure at what point it changed (perhaps it never really worked), but if you’re trying to create your Google Places page with a personal Gmail/Google account and you’re running into problems with the quality guidelines, try creating a new Google account that has, as its username, a full valid email address from your real domain, and see if that helps.

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