Google Business Reviews Going Missing After Suggested Edits (Scary Bug)

Nov 14, 2022 • 7:21 am | comments (0) by twitter mastodon | Filed Under Google Maps
 

Google Business Profiles and business listings reviews are going missing, dropping out completely, again, but this time it seems to be related to automated suggested edits occurring on some business profiles. In short, Google or a user might suggest an edit to your business listing, then Google may decide to adopt that suggested edit, resulting in your Google business listing's CID, the identification number Google uses for your business, changing. With that change, the reviews go missing and are poof - gone.

Mike Blumenthal documented the issue in great detail this weekend on his blog, he said "a number of posters in the forum, after their listings were auto-updated, lost all of their reviews." This happens when the suggested edits are pushed by Google to the business profile and the business owner does not manually reject the changes in time. Then what happens is Google adopts the changes and in some cases, it seems, Google changes the listings CID, and does not migrate the reviews from the old CID to the new one.

Mike pointed to these four threads in the Google Business Profiles Help forums over the past week. They all had the same situation, that is, losing all of their reviews after Google automatically applies suggested edits, resulting in the CID changing for that business listing.

Mike wrote that he "discovered that in each case Google had changed the CID, the identifier Google uses to tie all relevant information to a business, including reviews. Usually the CID only changes when two listings merge or Google has hard-suspended a listing for guidelines violations and then reinstated it. Changing the CID and losing reviews with a Suggested Edit update is a new and disturbing bug. It could happen to almost anyone for no reason, or no apparent reason. Yet, in Google's infinite wisdom, it could also be working as intended."

Mike explains you should be prepared for this happening to your business listing by capturing your CID for your listing, he explains how to do this in his post. For example, my company's CID is 2946633002421908862. Then make sure to capture the content of your business, all the business details and the reviews, if possible. You can keep the reviews you get copies of in an email folder, since Google will often email you copies of those reviews. Also, make sure to turn on notifications for everything for your business listings.

Then if this happens to you, submit a complaint with your original and new CID in the forums and ask for Google to put things back to where they were. Hopefully Google can and will.

Note, this is unrelated to the reviews being removed from weeks ago.

Here are some of what the local SEOs are saying about this:

What a mess.

Forum discussion at Twitter.

Update: Google is aware of the bug and working to fix it:

Update 2: Google said it was fixed:

But I am not sure if it is fixed...

Update 3: Google is still working on restoring the lost reviews:

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