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Google Business Profile suffers bugs around pricing and driving time

31 March 2023 /
All industries  /   Google Business Profile 

Bug 1: GBP services display incorrect pricing (sometimes free)

Services have become a big part of Google Business Profiles. General business categories such as “painters” love the ability to rank for far more specific queries such as “fence painting” and that is made possible by including all their standard and custom services within their profile. Services have the option to be listed with or without pricing but for some businesses, the decision to specify seems to have been taken for them.

Due to a glitch, Google has listed seemingly random prices for some business’ services. In the worst cases, these prices are listed as “free” or well above or below what would be considered reasonable. Many businesses are only learning of this glitch when they receive a complaint or negative review over their dishonest price advertising, an advertisement which they themselves had no part in promoting.

There is no known pattern for which businesses have been affected by this bug. There is at least an easy fix through businesses manually changing their listed prices back to normal. However, for larger businesses, manually checking every single listing and every single service can be a massive headache. To avoid disgruntled customers though, this is something that business managers must do.

Bug 2: GBP warns managers “your business is not visible to customers”

Google confirmed a bug where it is showing to business owners a notice in Google Search that “your business is not visible to customers”. This is not actually true and profiles as displaying as intended. This is however a very distressing message to receive in error.

Screenshot of google bsiness profile

Bug 2.5: GBP gives inflated driving directions, Google claiming this is normal

Comparing Driving Direction Requests to the Pre-GBP Insight change vs. Post, there is a major change in how Google is producing driving direction request numbers. DAC is seeing numerous examples of data pulled in the past for driving direction requests, not matching at all what is currently being reported by Google.  An example of something our clients have come across below:

On Dec 6th I exported a clients GBP insights for Sept 1st – Nov 30th 2022, where they had 2,151 clicks on directions. This is a normal amount for this client. I ran the same report for the exact date range today and now their direction clicks state 31,574. This is NOT an accurate number for this client and I’m not sure why the numbers are nearly 15x higher than what they were on the Dec export (again, same date range). 

DAC reached out to Google to explain the discrepancy in the driving direction KPI and received the response below:

“It’s important to us to provide merchants with helpful insights about their Business Profile’s performance on Google, and users can see a depth of insights in the Performance tab when they access their Business Profile from Search or Maps. With our new metrics we are working to track metrics and impressions more accurately as well as make sure the general impressions of each user are tracked through the day to ensure we provide the number of unique impressions and accurate engagement.” 

Google’s non-committal response did not address why driving directions are inflated beyond a reasonable amount. Google stated that the new driving metrics are “more accurate” but did not substantiate that claim. Google is sticking with these new numbers, and they won’t take accountability for their inaccuracy. Unless Google fixes their reporting inaccuracies, business managers can do nothing but just compare newer data going forward.