“Google is using the new business profile to seek support from small businesses for Google’s opposition to unresolved antitrust law,” Mike Blumenthal, a former founder of LocalU and GatherUp, wrote for Near Media. Following the renaming from Google My Business to Google Business Profile, many business owners have received notice of the name change along with requests to learn more about “new laws [that may affect] my business”.
Google is appealing to small and medium-sized businesses to lobby for the case of the technology giant. While we weren’t able to repeat the query on the SERP dashboard, Blumenthal included screenshots of his business profile where Google tells listing managers: “The proposed law could make it harder to find your business online.”
On Twitter, Blumenthal also shared an email sent to Darren Shaw of Whitespark, a Canadian local SEO company, urging them to “take action” on behalf of Google to advocate for Google’s stance before lawmakers. The idea is that the changes in the law will make it harder for Google to offer the same support to small businesses and will therefore harm SMEs in the long run.
This is not the first time. When it was previously in legislative trouble, Google has previously tried to appeal to users to comment when laws change. In 2013, they asked for cookies, telling search engines in the SERP: “Cookies help us provide our services.” This was a quick response to European privacy laws.
When European laws changed to allow people to request removal from the search index, Google sent an email to individual site owners telling them, “We are sorry to inform you that we are no longer able to display the following pages from your website. pages in response to certain searches on European versions of Google. ”
The same thing happened when French law required Google to “remove clips from its search results for publications in European media,” Barry Schwartz wrote at a roundtable for search engines. When the EU told Google to stop notifying searchers of the removal of individual searches, they followed the request by adding a removal notice to all search pages, Sam Schechner told the Wall Street Journal:
Google seems to agree with the regulator’s desire for the company to refrain from listing in search results when something is removed. Google has previously indicated that it could highlight removals, something it does when it removes links to pirated content. However, EU regulators have told Google in recent weeks that such a move would undermine the spirit of the decision by making it clear that some individuals wanted information about them to be muted, one regulator said.
Instead, Google added a general notice on Thursday that appears at the bottom of most results for individual name searches conducted on Google’s European search sites, according to an explanation the company posted on its website. The notice – “Some results may have been removed under European data protection law” – is added algorithmically to searches that look like a name, said a person familiar with the matter.
“As we said, we are concerned that a controversial package of congressional laws could have unintended consequences, especially for small businesses that have relied on digital tools to adapt, recover and reach new customers during a pandemic. We know our customers have questions, so we’re working to keep them informed of how these accounts could affect the tools they rely on on a daily basis to run their business, ”a Google spokesman told Search Engine Land.
Why do we care. Google’s goal seems to appeal to search engines and businesses that use their services when lawsuits affect how they run their business. “This attempt to manipulate small businessmen with the help of astroturfing is a completely new level of deception. This reveals Google’s intentions to protect its monopoly at all costs. “Their attempt to substantiate the arguments of fictitious alliances, for legitimacy, adds fuel to the obvious fire,” Blumenthal wrote in his text on this issue. If you work with SMEs and they have received a notification, there is a chance that they are concerned about how the laws and the changes that result from them will affect their business. While marketers are often more skeptical of the search giant’s methods and motives, it might be worth being proactive with your local SEO clients to tell them what this query means.
The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Employed authors are listed here.
About The Author
Carolyn Lyden was the director of search content for Search Engine Land and SMX. With expertise in SEO, content marketing, local search and analytics, she focuses on making things easier for marketing professionals with important news and educational content.