Recently, we've been using the new Google Verification Support Line for those irritating PIN postcards disappearing within the black hole that is the U.S Postal System, and with satisfying results to boot. Upon providing the requested account information for the listing in limbo, Google will force through the verification and immediately send it to their "pending review" process. Granted there are certain criteria that need to be met prior to a "we'll call you" phone call a la Fight Club (which can be bypassed with some harmless fibbing), it is still an effective solution to a previously hair-pulling problem. No longer are the weeks of waiting for a vague email response to submitted report, only to find yourself back where you started after the dust settles. Instead Google has uncharacteristically opened a direct line of contact.
We decided to push our luck and see how far beyond postcard verification issues the support line would allow for. We went with the "bend not break" strategy, slowly swimming a little further out with each attempt. It didn't take long, though. After about four phone calls Google swiftly brought down the hammer; they were not fooled. So that’s where we left it, grateful for the stepping stone.
Recently, though, we have been granted one more step forward. Late Tuesday night, Google extended their helping hand a bit closer and acknowledged another listing issue roadblock: updates that won't update.
For preaching consistency, Google had made it painstakingly difficult to adhere to their guidelines in some cases, intentionally or not. Up until now, listings containing suite numbers that didn't show, phone numbers that won’t update, or business hours that refuse to change have been a headache that offered no solution but to sit and wait. For any question that is the worst possible answer.
Well now there’s relief. Google’s support services have expanded to “Listing data, including title, address, phone, URL, "at a glance" terms, categories, hours, description, or coupons”. The biggest itches scratched in our experience are the “categories” and “at a glance” terms. At a glance in particular because the displayed data was out of our hands, and a bit of a mystery.
Being uncharted waters for both parties involved there will undoubtedly be some growing pains, but this is definitely an exciting development. Hopefully Google has the confidence to continue the expansion.