Google My Business Agency Dashboard: Delight or Disaster for SEOs?
Announced by Google just over a month ago, but finally launched on June 6 Google My Business Agency Dashboard aims to give agency partners full control over their multi-location clients’ multiple GMB profiles. You can register here to get access to the GMB Agency Dashboard.
This news is long-awaited by the countless poor SEOs previously stuck manually logging into a separate GMB profile for each location, and has the potential to drastically improve the efficiency and efficacy of your GMB profile updates. However, the local SEO industry has encountered some major challenges with the new feature (see below).
Coming as it does after a raft of new features for and improvements to Google My Business (and the local search experience as a whole), this is a timely reminder that Google is taking local SEO very seriously in 2018.
Here’s a rundown of the main features in the Google My Business Agency Dashboard:
Google My Business Agency Dashboard Features
- Manage an unlimited (well, Google says ‘thousands’) number of locations from within one account.
- New ‘Location Groups’ can be set up to collect organizations. Access to the Location Group can by sought by or given by both client and agency.
- Quick search function allows for easier access to locations within your entire account or Location Group.
- User Groups help management of teams and access control, with permission levels available for different user types.
- Invite others to manage listings and view invite status.
SEOs’ Reception to the GMB Agency Dashboard
Migrating to the new Google My Business Agency Dashboard is a NIGHTMARE. If you have an existing agency and haven’t attempted to get one yet – don’t bother. Save yourself the headache.
— Joy Hawkins (@JoyanneHawkins) June 12, 2018
Since the release of the new Dashboard, the local SEO community has been awash with criticisms of the new feature. Joy Hawkins shared her initial frustrations on Twitter, reporting:
- Migrating a location forces you to become the primary owner = booting the business owner to a manager.
- Your employees can’t be added until they empty their GMB account.
- I get 4 email alerts for every location I transfer over.
- The client also gets these 4 emails and wonders what is going on.
- You lose the GMB dashboard in search (my fav).
- You see a list of invitations you’ve sent but can’t filter the ones outstanding.
- Someone adds you as a manager on a listing and it results in an error. You have to be the one to ask for an invitation. Client doesn’t know this. Super confusing.
- Several listings cannot be requested. Trying to request access prompts you to create a new listing.
- The first person to accept the request has success but since it goes to every owner on the listing, the rest of them get a 404 error when they click.
- Currently not seeing any way to link any listings inside the New GMB Agency Dashboard with Adwords.
If you’ve got questions or have encountered issues, Local Search Forum has an excellent mega-thread going on here: ‘GMB Agency Dashboard Problems or Confusion‘.
Forthcoming BrightLocal Updates to Make Managing Google My Business Easier
Google’s not the only one taking GMB and local search seriously in 2018. In response to new (and longstanding but growing in use) GMB features, the BrightLocal toolset is in the process of expanding to include the following:
- Manage Google reviews efficiently with new reputation management features
- Write and schedule Google My Business Posts from BrightLocal
- Manage and monitor multiple locations from one dashboard
Look out for these updates later this year!
We’d love to hear your thoughts
Have you dove into the Google My Business Agency Dashboard yet? What’s your take on it? Have you found it easy to implement and communicate about with your clients? Have you encountered challenges? We’d love to hear about your experiences so let us know in the comments below.