* Is Google My Business (GMB) converting to a PAID SUBSCRIPTION model? Well, sort of

 

Google is rolling out the "Google Guarantee" badge for home services. Does that include music lessons?


By Dirk Johnson


It is likely that you will begin to see all kinds of wild conspiracy theories about this subject. A lot of it will be sensational, and probably either wrong or purposely incorrect, in order to manipulate you.

 

Of course, knowing how the SEO business works, I suspect that a lot of it will be written in a way that encourages you to hire someone (the writer) to sort it all out for you...

 

So, here are some facts that I have uncovered:

 

1) Google is now rolling out a paid "Google Guarantee" badge for home services.

 

For $50 per month, (and meeting their qualifications) you can get "vetted" by Google for your home services business.

 

This INCLUDES an "insurance policy" for homeowners who are dissatisfied with the work, up to $2000 lifetime.

 

Yeah, there are lots of questions, but more info is here:

https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/7549288?hl=en

 

No word yet if paying the fee gets you a better ranking in search...maybe not...We'll see.

 

2) Apparently this program is not yet available to music lesson instructors.

 

To get the badge, you have to pass a background check. Under their "Requirements by category for US businesses", music lessons are not listed.

https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/7549288?hl=en

 

So, it appears that, for now, you can't participate in this program. For now....

 

3) Nevertheless, I'd not sit around an assume that all is fine...

 

Google IS coming after your wallet, folks. This is just the first rumble of thunder.

 

The free traffic that they send your way through Google My Business really gnaws at their hide.

They will eventually find ways to make you pay for it. Google sent out a survey to ad agencies in April 2019, asking for input about various paid enhancements to GMB. This Google Guarantee program was a part of that survey. So, its all coming.

 

As a defense, I suggest that you get your Google My Business listing in tip-top shape now, and get all the free traffic that you can, while you can. Google My Business is a HUGE traffic source.

 

For further reading, here is a good reliable article about all of this from a trusted source in the SEO world.

https://searchengineland.com/google-offering-upgraded-gmb-profile-with-google-guaranteed-badge-for-50-per-month-338064

 

Thanks again for tuning in!