[2021] How To Claim A Business On Google That Is Already Claimed

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[2021] How To Claim A Business On Google That Is Already Claimed

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You are trying to claim your business profile on Google Maps or Google My Business and you came across this message: “This listing has already been claimed”… You are probably thinking “someone claimed my business on Google!”

Or perhaps you lost your Google login details.

Whatever is the issue, don’t worry I have your back, I created this comprehensive and easy to follow step by step guide showing how you can get access to your Google My Business listing.

Reasons

First, you may want to know why this might have happened.

These are the main reasons:

  • The previous owner has claimed it and didn’t transfer the listing (very common)
  • An employee/friend has claimed it (also very common)
  • The owner forgot that already claimed and does not remember (quite common)
  • The owner does not know the login details used to claim the listing (common)
  • Finally, the most sinister yet, someone else claimed the listing! It could be a spammer, a competitor or some 3rd party with not so good intentions (not very common, but unfortunately happens often)

What can you do?

If you lost the login details follow these account recovery steps, if that fails you will have to use this process.

However, if you got “This listing has already been claimed” message your course of action will depend if you know or not the person that claimed your Google My Business Profile.

Tip: You can speak with the previous owners or friends/employees to confirm if they claimed it.  

Pro Tip: If it was a friend/employee, you could use the email address hint given by Google to guess who it was.

Now you choose your next step:

You know the person that claimed your Google My Business Profile

If they confirmed they have claimed it, now you should ask if they still have access to the Google My Business account.

If they have it, great! As it will be a much easier process, they only need to transfer over to you the ownership of the listing and I will explain below how to transfer the ownership.

However, much of the time they forgot the login details…in that case, they can try to  recover the login details, if that fails you will have to use this process.

Transfer Ownership of a claimed your Google My Business Profile

This is a 3 steps process:

Provide the first 2 steps set of instructions to the “owner(s)” of the profile, note only users with “Primary Owner” status can do this process.

Step 1

Add a New Owner to a Google My Business Profile

  1. On your computer, sign in to Google My Business
Google My Business Sign in Screen
  1. In the menu on the left, click Users.
  1. At the top right, click on “Add users”.
  1. Enter the name or email address of the new owner and click Choose a role » Owner
  1. Click Invite. The new owner will receive an email to accept the invitation.

Note: When an invitation is accepted, the owners of the profile are notified through email.

Step 2

Transfer Google My Business Profile Primary Ownership

  1. On your computer, sign in to Google My Business.
Google My Business Sign in Screen
  1. In the left-hand side menu, click “Users”
  1. Find the user you’d like to choose as the new owner. To the right of their name, click on the dropdown menu and select “Primary owner”
This option only shows up if you’re an owner of the Business Profile
  1. Click “Done”. “Primary owner” role is transferred to the new owner immediately.

Step 3

Remove the Old Owner(s) from Your Google My Business Profile

  1. On your computer, sign in to Google My Business.
Google My Business Sign in Screen
  1. In the left-hand side menu, click “Users”
  1. Next to the old owner name, click “Remove”
  1. On the pop-up box, confirm “Remove”

Note: When a user is removed, they’re notified through email. They will no longer be able to edit business information or take any administrative actions for the profile. But all their past responses to reviews, posts, comments, and other actions will remain.

After all these steps are performed, you are finally in control of your business profile and you are free to edit, post and manage your profile.

You don’t know the person that claimed your Google My Business Profile or don’t know the login details

As you don’t know who owns the profile or the login details, I will show you the steps on how to claim a verified listing. This can be an easy process or not, but more on that later.

Pro Tip: It’s not crucial, but to facilitate the claiming process, you should use your business email address (example@yourwebsitedomain.com) if you have it. And if you don’t have a Google account for that email address, create one. Also, it helps if you verify your website on Google Search Console.

Important: Before starting the request ownership process for a business listing, make sure that the address and phone number published are correct. If this business information is wrong, use the “Suggest an edit” feature first to update the Business Profile.

Choose your business listing type:

There are different steps for businesses with a physical location and businesses without a physical location but service customers face to face at their location.

  • Service Area Business -businesses without a physical location but service customers face to face at their location

How to Claim When Someone Else Claimed Your Business on Google for Storefront Businesses

  1. Go to business.google.com/add
  1. Enter the name, then choose it from the search results. 

Pro Tip: if many listings appear and you cannot see yours, after the business name add your business address/postal code

  1. You will see a message to inform you that the listing has already been claimed and verified, as well as a hint to the email address which was used to do this
  1. Click Request access and fill out the form.
  1. Click Submit.

Go now to What Happens Next section»

How to Claim When Someone Else Claimed Your Business on Google for Service Area Businesses

  1. Go to business.google.com/add
  1. Enter your business information – note as the listing is verified and is a service area business you may not get the existing listing in the drop-down to claim
  1. Confirm the business name and click Next
  1. Choose a category that best fits your business
  1. You will be asked “Do you want to add a location customers can visit, like a store or office?” as a service area business, select No
  1.  Add your service areas, when prompted (optional)
  1. Choose your Region (Country). Sometimes this step does not appear
  1.  Add your phone number and website URL (optional), when prompted 
  1. Click Finish
  1.  After you clicked on “Finish”, you will have in front of you an apparent strange request, asking you “Please enter your mailing address to verify”.  Rest assured the address will not show on the profile, only for verification purposes. Verification by postcard usually takes 5-14 business days.
  1. After you receive the verification code(enter the code steps) and your profile is verified, you will get the “Owner conflict” box that indicates the location is a duplicate.
  1. Click Request access and fill out the form.
  1. Click Submit.

Go now to What Happens Next section»

What happens Next 

After you submit your request, the current profile owner will receive an email with your request and you will receive a request confirmation.

If you click on “View request “, you will be presented with this page:

The current owner has up to 3 days to respond, that person will either:

Your request is  Approved

 You will be notified by email and will gain full access to the listing, just login into your Google My Business account.

Your Request is Denied

  You will be notified by email stating “Sorry, owner of [Business ] has rejected your request…”  as the email example below. 

As you can see in the above example, you should be able to appeal by clicking “Appeal Now”.  

If you don’t have an Appeal link on the email, you need to contact Google Support.

Important: If the owner of the listing does not grant you the access, then anything added by that owner will not transfer with the listing, including photos and review responses, if access is gained in the appeal process. But customer reviews and photos will still be attached to the listing. 

You receive No Response

It is possible  you get no response, as the previous owners don’t care anymore about the listing.

After 3 Days, you may have the option to claim the listing yourself. Just go back to the confirmation email you received and click on “View request”:

If you are not able to get the verify/claim button, you need to contact Google Support.

I hope this comprehensive guide helps your gain access to your GMB profile. Feel free to check my Google My business Training where I show you Complete Listing Optimization.

FAQ

How to recover my Google My Business login details?

 If you want to try to recover your login details, this is the process:

To find your Google Account username:

  1. Follow the steps to identify your account. You’ll need to know:
    • A phone number or the recovery email address for the account
    • The full name on your account
  1. Follow the steps to confirm it’s your account.
    • If you entered a phone number, enter the code sent to that phone.
    • If you entered a recovery email address, check its inbox for an email from Google. Enter the code from the email.
  1. You’ll see a list of usernames that match.

Then you can get the password reset:

  1. Follow the steps to recover your account.

Reset your password when prompted. Choose a strong password that you haven’t already used with this account.

To learn the latest about Google My Business, you should check these articles:

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