I tend to suggest using a different phone number for each location of your business, but exactly what’s the downside of using the same number on all of your Google My Business pages?
Google’s guidelines don’t tell you to use a location-specific phone number.
“Merged” Google pages don’t seem to be a problem these days – and even when they were, a shared phone number probably wouldn’t have caused pages to merge.
I’ve seen businesses use one number for many locations and rank just fine – and you may have observed that, too.
Google My Business forum Top Contributors don’t indicate that a shared phone number is a big problem (though it’s “not ideal”).
Some of my fellow local-search geeks suggest using separate phone numbers – and I agree with that advice, generally. But I haven’t seen anyone spell out exactly what might happen if you use the same number everywhere.
Here’s one possible downside: Google may not verify one or more of your pages.
That happened recently to a multi-location client of mine. They chose to use the same phone number for their 5 (or so) Google My Business pages in different major cities across the US. Though I’d suggested getting and using different phone numbers – one for each location – their choice also made sense in their case. They’d had a couple of GMB pages up for a few years, and created the others in recent months.
They verified all their GMB pages without incident, except for one page. The client got on the phone with GMB support (always a good time), and they were told that the problem was that the phone number wasn’t unique to that one location. Of course, that was also true of the other pages, which had been verified A-OK.
After some back-and-forth and presumably a little groveling, the client got Google to wave the page through. All’s well that ends well.
But what about your situation? If you’re multi-location, should you use a unique number for each of your Google My Business pages?
I wouldn’t say a multi-location phone number is like giving your rankings a Kent Micronite. If you get all your pages verified, your visibility will depend on the usual suspects.
Still, I recommend using a unique phone number, if at all possible. You’ll make it a little more apparent to Google and to searchers that you’ve actually got people in all the places you say you do.
What’s been your experience with using the same phone number (or different numbers) on Google My Business?
Have you heard of any specific problems resulting from using the same number across the board – or heard any strong advice?
Leave a comment!