Studied for Your Google+Local SATs?

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Have YOU done your homework?It’s my pleasure to publish the first guest post that’s made its way onto this blog.

Colan Nielsen of Powered by Search has impressed me over the last few months with the knowledge he shares over at Linda Buquet’s forum, and I really liked an idea he had for a post (below).

At the very bottom is a link to the PDF that contains Colan’s answers to the quiz questions.


Last year Phil did a post with a quiz on “How Well Do You Know the Google Places Quality Guidelines?” After taking Phil’s quiz (and acing it…cough cough), I realized that this was the first time that some of the Google Places Quality Guidelines were actually sticking to my brain. After all those years of writing, and not particularly enjoying all those tests in high school, I’ve finally come full circle and have a new appreciation for the mighty “quiz”.

That motivated me to create a training resource for our local marketing team at Imprezzio. Once I had created the quiz, I sent it out to the team, and then on the following week’s team meeting we went over all the questions, dissected the answers, and in turn, created some great discussion. It was one of the best meetings we had in a while, and it dawned on me that this was only the beginning of a great way to stay on top of the constantly changing rules and guidelines of Google+ Local.

It’s important for local SEOs to know the rules. It’s even more important if you’re a business owner trying to get your own business visible in Google+Local.

Whether you ace the quiz or fail it gloriously, you‘ve got to know Google’s rules.  It’s the difference between sinking and swimming.



1.    Which of the following categories would Google deem acceptable? (multiple answers accepted)

a.  Dentist
b.  Teeth Whitening Service
c.  Braces
d.  Toronto Dentist
e.  NYC Renters Insurance
f.  Insurance Agency
g. Best Insurance Agency

2.    Categories must describe what your business_____, not what it ______.

3.    Where do you put the Suite#/Apt# etc. in the Google Places Dashboard?

a.  Address line 1
b.  Never add suite #
c.  Address line 2

Business Address/Location

4.    Which of the following businesses would most likely need to hide their address?(multiple answers accepted)

a.  Insurance Agency
b.  Electrician
c.  Plumber
d.  Sporting Goods Store

5.    A Service Area Business (SAB) can have a Google+ Local page for every city/area that it services?

a.  TRUE

6.    Only businesses that make in-person contact with customers qualify for a Google listing.

a.  TRUE

Business Name

7.  The business name must represent your business exactly as it appears in the offline world. Name 3 things that you should never put in your business name.



8.    What is the best-practice for when a business moves to a new location/address?

a.  Edit the existing listing in the Google Places dashboard
b.  Edit the existing listing with the EBD (“Edit business details”)
c.  Mark the listing as closed and create a new listing

9.    When is it acceptable to claim a single listing into more than 1 account?

a.  Only for a Service Area Business (“SAB”)
b.  Only for a business with a storefront
c.  When you want to have multiple managers for the listing
d.  Never

10. Which method of reporting a problem to Google Places support gets you an open line of communication with Google, which allows you to correspond back and forth?

a.  “Report a Problem”
b.  Google Places Troubleshooter

11. Videos uploaded to the Google Places dashboard currently take how long to go live?

a.  4 to 6 weeks
b.  1 to 2 weeks
c.  Instantly
d.  The video feature is currently disabled and doesn’t ever show live

Done?  Check out the answers.

You can also get the quiz as a PDF.

Oh, and here are the rules straight from Google.

Colan Nielsen - Local SEO at Imprezzio MarketingAbout the Author

Colan Nielsen is the Agency Operations Manager at Powered by Search in Toronto, Canada. By night, he is Linda Buquet’s right-hand man and moderator at the Catalyst Local eMarketing Local Search Community.


  1. Great guest post by Colan! Thanks a lot.

    This quiz is perfect for that very purpose: to quiz (question) staff members and other consultants on the guideline. This is a great resource for covering those muddy areas of the guidelines.

    I particularly liked how “up to date” this was, particularly with question 8. (from “General”) that only changed very recently.

  2. Awesome guys! Love the quiz. I gotta use this with my clients!

    But man looking this quiz…. I can see why it’s so confusing for SMB’s. How the hell would know all that…? I guess this is why we are in business. Cause we know! 😉

  3. This is awesome! You should embed the quiz on your site so people can take it right on your site and you can keep track of everyone’s scores.

    • Thanks, Joy! Great idea. I’m a big fan of the KISS approach, and at the end of the day, Colan is the man with the plan in terms of this quiz 🙂

  4. Great job Colan – I also know you from Linda’s Forum and you have helped me in the past. Phil has too!

    I thought I had Google+ Guidelines down pat, but I was wrong. We are going to start on-site trainings in the fall – I hope you don’t mind us using your quiz. It’s a great tool!

    Thanks both of you!

  5. Nice guys! Super solid for any new employees or clients. I would like to make an addition – Your blood pressure will rise how many points each day working with incorrect listings? a) at least 35 points b) mine has been steadily increasing since Maps went live or c) I don’t want to find out! Answer is d) all the above. Thanks for the good work Colan!

  6. This is a great resource – thank you!
    Just a head’s up though – it looks like there is some problems with the lettered bullets on the answers PDF. Some of the letters continue on from the previous question(s).

    • Hey Eric, thanks for your compliments. And for the heads-up on the lettering; I’ll have to ask Colan about that (I don’t have the original doc). Doh!

  7. Awesome quiz, and I am proud to say that, thanks to your help, I got 100%. Keep up the excellent work, guys!


  1. […] thread on "training." If you like quizzes and think you know Google's rules, take a swing at it: Studied for Your Google+Local SATs? | Thanks again, […]

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