Why Is My Business Not Showing Up On Google? [10+ Reasons]

Shehriar Awan
July 5, 2024
13 min read

Did you know Google dominates search with an impressive 91% market share? This means if people are looking for businesses like yours, there's a high chance they're using Google.

But what if they can't find you?

It's like having a storefront on the busiest street, but with the lights off and the doors locked. Most of the time, people have no clue why their business is not visible on Google.

So in this article, I’ll reveal the 10+ most common reasons why this happens, and how to fix them to get your business seen!

  1. Your business has no online presence
  2. Your business profile is new
  3. Your business profile is incomplete
  4. You’ve provided incorrect information
  5. You’ve selected wrong business category
  6. Your Google Business Profile is not verified
  7. Your GBP is suspended
  8. You don’t have enough reviews and engagement
  9. Your profile is poorly optimized
  10. You’ve got tough SERP competition
  11. You’ve been penalized after Google algorithm update
  12. There are technical issues in your GBP

Let’s investigate and fix them one by one.

Why is my business not showing up on Google?

To appear in Google search results, the first thing you need to have is some sort of online presence. It can be a public profile or a website.

For example, for Lobstr, our website Lobstr.io is our online identity. In my case, it’s my X and LinkedIn profiles.

If you’re a local business, the best way to build an online presence is creating a Google Business Profile.

What is Google Business Profile?

Google Business Profile (aka Google My Business) is a free tool that allows businesses to create and manage their online presence across Google Search and Maps.

You can call it your digital storefront on Google, helping potential customers discover your business.

Benefits of Google Business Profile

84% of searches on Google are discovery searches i.e. they include keywords like “near me” or “within my area”.

This statistic is enough to convince you to create a GBP profile but let me tell you more benefits of having a Google Business Profile.

  1. Free listing on Google Search & Maps
  2. More website visits & calls from local searches
  3. Respond to reviews & questions. Engage with customers directly
  4. See how people find you online
  5. Builds trust with potential customers

But how do I create a Google Business Profile?

How to create Google Business Profile?

It’s super easy! Just follow these 10 simple steps and you’ll have a Google Business Profile full ready in a couple of minutes.

  1. Sign in to your Google account (You can also use your business email domain)
  2. Go to business.google.com/create
  3. Click on “Add your business to Google”
  4. Enter your business name and category and click “Next”
  5. Enter your business address and click “Next”
  6. Pinpoint your exact business location on the Map, then click “Next”
  7. Select your service areas if you do home delivery or allow office visits
  8. Now add your business contact details (these details will be public)
  9. Complete Google Business Profile Verification
  10. Add business hours, other details, description, and photos

That’s it. Your business profile is ready.

Now how do I access my GBP profile to make changes?

How to access Google Business Profile dashboard?

To access your GBP dashboard, just search your business name in Google. Make sure you’re logged in to the same Google account you used to create the profile.

If you still don’t see the menu similar to the above screenshot, you can access your business profile following these steps.

  1. Login to the Google account that manages your GBP
  2. Visit google.com/business
  3. Click “Manage Now”
  4. Click the pencil (✎) icon to edit business information
  5. Click “See your profile” to access other features

But I already have a Google Business Profile, still my business is invisible in both Google Search and Google Maps.

If you’re still invisible on Google search and Maps, here are 12 more reasons why Google has ghosted you and how to fix it.

12 Reasons why your Google Business profile is not showing up on Google

We’ll start with the basics and then move towards more complex reasons preventing you from appearing in Google search.

Let’s go 💨

1. Your profile is new

Yes, it’s pretty simple. It’s not necessary that you start appearing in search results and Google Maps right after creating a Google Business account.

For example, I just created a Google Business Profile for my imaginary business called “Shehriar’s Lobster Stew”. Let’s see if it appears in search.

Nope it’s not there. It usually takes a while or sometimes more than a while to appear on Google search.

How to fix it?

The key is patience. Wait for a few hours or maybe some days and your business will eventually show up on Google.

But what if it doesn’t appear after months of creating a GBP profile?

This brings us to our second reason.

2. Your business profile is incomplete

Another common reason is having an incomplete profile. If your profile doesn’t have basic business information, you might not appear in search results.

Then how’s my imaginary and incomplete profile visible?

Well, a complete profile matters when you’ve competitors offering similar service in your service area.

Since no one’s selling Lobster Stew in my area, I’m the only relevant choice for local visitors. That’s why Google ranked my listing on the “near me” keyword.

So if you have competitors in the same area and their profiles are complete, Google won’t list your incomplete profile among them.

How to fix it?

  1. Login to your Google account that you use to manage GBP
  2. Go to your Google Business Profile Manager
  3. Click the pencil (✎) icon to edit your business information
  4. Carefully fill all the fields with most updated information

Once you update the missing information, it’ll appear on your business listing in a few minutes and you’ll most likely see your listing among competitors in search results.

But my profile is complete, still my business is not showing in Google.

3. You’ve provided incorrect information

Inconsistent or incorrect business information can prevent your business from showing up on Google.

When your NAP (name, address, phone number) are not uniform across various online platforms, it confuses Google's algorithms and can reduce your profile's visibility in search results.

How to fix it?

To be found easily in searches, make sure your NAP info is exactly the same everywhere online.

This includes your website, social media, and any local business listings you find. Even a small mistake, like a missing apartment number, can confuse search engines.

You can use tools like Moz Local and BrightLocal to track inconsistencies and fix them with ease.

What if all the information is correct and complete but your business is still invisible in search?

4. You’ve selected wrong business category

Selecting the wrong business category can also prevent your business from appearing in relevant searches.

If your business category is not aligned with your actual offerings, potential customers may not find you when searching for specific services or products.

How to fix it?

  1. Go to your Google Business Profile Manager
  2. Click the pencil (✎) icon to edit business information
  3. Click on “Business category”
  4. Add all relevant categories
  5. Choose the most relevant category as your primary category

But what if my categories are also correctly defined?

5. Your Google Business Profile is not verified

Without a verified Google Business Profile, you’ll remain invisible on discovery searches. You won’t find your business on a “near me” search.

Google now automatically verifies most of the businesses these days. It rarely asks for verification.

But when it requires additional information to verify your business, you’ll see a “Verification required” alert in your GBP Manager.

How to fix it?

  1. From your GBP Manager, click “Get verified” button
  2. Select your preferred verification method
  3. Complete the verification process
  4. Keep checking your mail for further instructions

Once your profile is verified, you’ll see edit, post, and image buttons too in your GBP manager.

Still not showing up on Google?

6. Your Google Business Profile is suspended

Again, it’s a rare phenomenon but maybe your Google Business Profile is suspended. In that case, Google will obviously delist you from the search too.

It can happen due incorrect information, prohibited practices, or breaching Google's guidelines.

How to fix it?

First of all, check your Google My Business account for any suspension notifications. Google typically provides details about the reason for suspension.

Review Google's guidelines to understand the specific violation and take corrective actions. Now prepare your evidence and submit an appeal.

Once you have your case ready, here’s how to submit an appeal.

  1. Open GBP appeals tool and select your business profile
  2. Confirm the reason for moderation action
  3. Click on “Submit an appeal” button at the bottom right corner
  4. Add optional evidence to support your appeal and submit

Google will review your application in 3 business days and notify you about the decision.

Now let’s discuss some reasons why you’re visible only when your business is searched and not on discovery searches.

7. You don’t have enough reviews and engagement

Lack of reviews or engagement can negatively impact your profile's visibility. Google favors profiles with higher customer interaction.

An empty review section may make your business appear less credible and less relevant in search results.

Similarly, bad reviews also impact your online visibility.

How to fix it?

If you don’t have any reviews, the solution is simple – get more reviews. Encourage satisfied customers to leave reviews after a purchase or service.

Offer easy ways for customers to review your business, such as direct links or QR codes. Also, respond to reviews, both positive and negative.

Also analyze your competitors and your reviews to identify gaps and potential opportunities.

How to analyze Google reviews?

Obviously reading reviews one by one would take ages. You can automate this process using a free no-code tools stack.

You can use Lobstr’s Google Maps Reviews Scraper along with ChatGPT to create a perfect review analysis framework.

  1. Cloud-based, no installation required
  2. Extracts 250+ reviews per minute
  3. Can fetch 15+ key data points with each review
  4. Exports reviews to Google Sheet and Amazon S3
  5. Has schedule feature for frequent reviews collection
  6. Has developer-friendly API for integrations

I’ve already written a detailed guide on review analysis. Check out How to Do a Google Reviews Search By Name and Keyword in 2024.

But what about fake reviews?

You can use Lobstr’s Google reviews scraper to identify fake reviews and delete them. Here’s a full guide on How to Delete Google Reviews.

Now based on your findings from review analysis, use the “Create post” feature to post offers and updates about your products/services.

Regularly posting updates keeps your profile fresh and Google loves updated content. This improves your chances of appearing on discovery searches.

Posting regularly but still not appearing on local search queries?

8. Your profile is poorly optimized

Your profile might not be optimized for local search, which can limit your visibility in local search results and reduce traffic to your business.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is equally important for enterprises and small businesses. Your GBP must be optimized for relevant keywords to improve your search rankings.

How to fix it?

  1. Optimize your profile by including relevant keywords in your business description, services, and posts.
  2. Regularly update your profile with high-quality images of your products, services, and location
  3. Implement local SEO best practices by using location-specific keywords
  4. Acquire local backlinks and create listings on local directories

If you want me to create a complete guide on Local SEO best practices with a checklist and proper plan, you can send me a content request on X or Linkedin.

Have done everything right and still not visible to searchers?

9. You’ve got tough SERP competition

If you’re doing business in a highly competitive area, there’s a high chance your competitors outrank you if you leave a loophole.

In a service area where competition is low, you can be #1 instantly, just like my Lobster Stew restaurant.

But if you are in a competitive area, Google also has many businesses in the same category and it’ll rank the best one on top.

You’ll have to make sure you outperform your competition not only in service but also in SEO best practices.

How to fix it?

First, identify the competitors. Find out who ranks among the top 10 and what’s your rank on a keyword.

How to do that?

Well use Lobstr! Our Google Maps Search Export can help you not only identify but also track your and your competitors’ Google Maps ranking.

  1. Extract 35+ key data points from listing
  2. Collect 200+ listings per minute
  3. Cloud based scraping – no install required
  4. Schedule feature for automated data collection
  5. Export data to Google Sheet or Amazon S3
  6. Developer-ready API for integration with your own apps

Guess what, I’ve already covered How to Build a Google Maps Rank Checker Without Coding. Check it out.

Once you’ve identified your competitors, analyze their profiles, identify strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats.

Plan your local SEO strategy accordingly… or my DMs are open. Just drop a message and I’ll write a detailed article on it.

No such competition, still not ranking? Well maybe…

10. You’ve been penalized after Google algorithm update

Google keeps updating its search algorithm. Changes to this algorithm impact Google SERP and Google Maps results.

Recent changes to Google’s algorithms might affect your visibility, causing fluctuations in your profile’s ranking and appearance in search results.

How to fix it?

Make sure you stay informed about these algorithm updates and take necessary steps on time.

  1. Follow industry blogs, forums, and official Google announcements
  2. Regularly review your Google Business Profile
  3. Adjust your strategies to align with new algorithm requirements

But Shehriar, I checked that too, there’s no update issue.

Hmm… why are you still not showing up on Google?

11. There are technical issues in your GBP

OK, I accept, you’re an SEO genius and have done everything right. I don’t know why you’re not visible.

Maybe a technical glitch?

Rare but happens sometimes. Despite being the best choice, Google sometimes ignores you.

How to fix it?

Check Google Business Profile Help Community for any known issues or updates related to technical problems.

If you don’t find a solution, contact Google support for assistance. They can help diagnose and resolve technical issues affecting your profile.

That’s it. Now let me answer some FAQs for you.

FAQs

What is the difference between GBP and GMB?

GBP stands for Google Business Profile is the rebranded name for Google My Business (GMB).

How long does it take for Google My Business profile to show up?

Your business listing will show up instantly after verification. If it doesn’t show up instantly, it might take 3-5 days to appear in search results.

Can I run ads for my Google My Business Listing?

Yes, you can run ads for your Google Business Profile listing using Google Ads. In fact, you can do it right from your GBP Manager.

Conclusion

That’s a wrap on 10+ reasons why your business is not showing up on Google. You can check out our blog for more such content.

Do check out Google Maps Search Export and Google Maps Reviews Scraper for automating your Google Maps rank tracking and review analysis.

Shehriar Awan - Content Writer at Lobstr.ioShehriar Awan

Self-proclaimed Head of Content @ lobstr.io. I write all those awesome how-tos, listicles, and (they deserve) troll our competitors.

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