New Updates to the Local Pack and GMB Guidelines
In early February, it was reported by SterlingSky that Google’s guidelines for using a co-working space and being on Google Maps via Google My Business have been updated.
This is rather timely, as it was discovered that the local pack is now showing a “located in” snippet on SERPs:
— Barry Schwartz (@rustybrick) February 10, 2021
Here is what we know.
Updated Co-working Space Guidelines
In their rules, Google now states that:
“Businesses can’t list an office at a co-working space unless that office maintains clear signage, receives customers at the location during business hours, and is staffed during business hours by your business staff.”
While this helps clear some things up, it still highlights the fact that Google only allows legitimate businesses to use co-working spaces so the search engine can more easily keep spam off the maps.
New “Located in” Feature on SERPs
Recently, Jason Brown of Review Fraud tweeted out that now more than ever businesses should check where GMB shows them as “located in,” as this change is now showing on the local pack in search engine results pages (SERPs):
— Jason Brown Armchair GMB Expert (@keyserholiday) February 5, 2021
Following this update, I also noticed a business was showing “Located in: Coworking Office Space” (which is the name of the office space on Google). Barry Schwartz of Search Engine Roundtable also noted this aspect.
Repercussions of This New Feature
So while many real businesses can use co-working spaces if they meet all the requirements by Google, they still will have a negative reputation in the industry.
With this new snippet in the local pack, if you’re in a co-working space you may also be more susceptible to being submitted for spam by users who notice that you are located in one.
So if you are going to use a co-working space, be sure to have materials ready to prove that you are legitimate!