GMB Scanner is a free Google Chrome extension that makes spam fighting on Maps faster and easier. Spam fighting is an essential local SEO strategy, but it is often overlooked because of the time it takes to build up the proof that Google needs to take action. GMB Scanner is designed to make finding that proof easier.
The scanner highlights businesses that may be violating Google guidelines. The currently supported flags include:
- Addresses that the USPS has marked as vacant. This might indicate a business that has closed, but is still listed as open on Google Maps.
- Listings that are using a P.O. Box, UPS store, or other similar private mailbox services as their address. This is specifically called out in the Google Maps guidelines.
- Detection of residential addresses. This is useful when a business should be customer facing, but is using their home as an address.
- An extensive database of virtual office and co-working addresses, including all the most common locations such as Davinci, Regus, Alliance, and WeWork. Google frowns on virtual offices, and they are frequently suspended.
GMB Scanner in Action
The scanner works on google.com/maps and adds flags to listings on the main Maps page, as well as listing detail pages.
There are some flags, such as the vacant address flag, that will only appear on the listing detail page. The extension will also add the listing CID to the page, so that you can include it in your redressal form report.
How to Report Map Spam
In addition to "Suggest an Edit", Google allows bulk reporting through the GMB Redressal Form. Here you can upload an entire spreadsheet of spam listings, and a human reviewer will eventually examine your report.
In general, your spreadsheet should have a single row per listing, and avoid including images (links to images should be fine). Be sure to include CID links so that the reviewer can easily find the listing in question.
Redressal Reports in Persuaded.io
You can also get an automatic export, ready for redressal form submission, directly from Persuaded.io. Instead of searching manually for spam, Persuaded.io can flag all potential spam in an area for you, and build a spreadsheet ready for submission.
Happy spam hunting!