Google’s Local Business offerings have been retooled and relaunched every few years. I often come across misused Google Business terms on forums and in blogs. Often, the problem is outdated product names. Search experts use the same slang phrases for different Google products. I thought collecting the current, standard terminology might help. I’ve provided links back to the sources on Google where possible. And if you write about local Google products, please keep your terminology up-to-date. A lot of confusion on small business forums comes from the wrong or obsolete terms.
Current Google Local Business Terms
- Google Brand Account
- A Google account for a business or a brand, as opposed to an individual account. Brand accounts are owned by someone with an individual account. If you have a business managed through Google My Business, you also have a corresponding Brand account. All brand accounts have a corresponding Google Photos account. You can see all the brand accounts you have access to at https://myaccount.google.com/brandaccounts
- Google+ Brand Page
- A Google+ page for an organization, product, group, or other artist that does not have a physical address. It will not have an address when you list all of your brand accounts.
- Google Local Business Page
- A Google page for a business with a physical address and managed through Google My Business, appearing on the Google+ Network. It will have an address when you list all of your brand accounts (although that sounds contradictory).
- Google My Business
- Google’s tools for businesses, individual professionals, and organizations to manage their online information in Google Search and Maps. When you create a Google My Business listing, you also create a Google Brand Account. Often abbreviated by local search experts in blogs and social media as GMB.
- Google Business Listing
- A generic term for your business information that appears in search and maps, both provided by you and gathered by Google. This listing could have originally been created by you, by Google, or by third parties. It is managed through Google My Business.
- Google Business Page
- Usually a generic term that could mean the Google My Business page, the Search knowledge panel, or the Google Map page for a business. When dealing with Google Support, this is the primary display page of your business content on Google Maps. When you go to the Location Details page of your Google My Business listing, right-click on the Maps link under “Published On.” The URL should in the format
https://maps.google.com/maps?cid=0123456789. This is the URL you provide to Google whenever you are reporting problems.
- Google Knowledge Panel
- Also called an info panel, this is a search result display type — and can display your business information.
- Google Place ID
- Google Place IDs predate Google’s business listings. Place IDs uniquely identify a place in the Google Places database and on Google Maps. Your business is located at a particular Place ID. If your business is shown at the wrong location (the out building instead of the corner of the mall), moving the location pin changes its Place ID.
- Google Place Label
- Place labels in Google Maps that point to landmarks, businesses, and tourist attractions in the base map data. A Place label represents a Place ID.
- Local Map Pack
- A non-Google term (also called a 3-pack) used to describe Google’s search results containing Google Business Listing data.
Terms in Action: Generate a Google Review Link With a Place ID
There are a lot of hacky ways businesses use to link customers directly to the “Rate and Review” box. Google provides its own link – tied to the Place ID. After getting your Google Place ID (here), replace <PLACE ID> in the following URL with your own, and you now have a link you can provide customers to leave you are review:
Google Business Search Archeology
Local Business Center, Google Local, Places For Business, Google+ Local, Google My Business
Have you come across some other terms, references or FAQs with Google local business information? David Mihm put together an detailed overview of Google’s local search efforts from 2004 to 2012 which can help date that blog post or help page. As you can see, the terminology has changed over and over again.