Last week I noticed that for my local business, Hartzer Consulting, that the knowledge panel for my local business was not showing up. If you searched for Hartzer Consulting (the name of the business, which is unique), then the Google My Business listing would NOT show up. It had looked to me like it was a change that Google had made, as others were reporting it, as well.
After some investigating, though, I was able to figure out why Google wasn’t showing my local business knowledge panel for my local business name:
Too many categories selected.
Yes, it seems to be a Google My Business penalty, of sorts, if you have too many categories selected for your local business. If you have more than, let’s say, one category added, then Google will NOT show your business in the right side of the search results. But, if you have one category selected, then your local business knowledge panel will show up.
Here’s my example, and how I specifically fixed this:
I had the following categories in my Google My Business listing added:
- Internet Marketing Service
- Advertising Agency
- Web Hosting company
- Marketing Consultant
So, I went ahead and removed every single one except for “Marketing Consultant”. Once the change was approved (in about 3-5 minutes), a search for “Hartzer Consulting” brought back the knowledge panel for the local business.
So, What Should You do?
If the knowledge panel (right side of the search results) doesn’t show your local business information for a search for your company name, then look to see if you have multiple categories selected. Here’s where you check that:
- Log into Google My Business.
- Click on Info on the left side of the page. You’ll see the blue section appear, as shown below.
- On the bottom of the blue square, look where it shows the category. Mine, as shown above, says “Marketing Consultant”. Click the pencil next to it to edit the categories listed.
At this time, I’m recommending that you only have one category listed, especially if you’re not seeing the Knowledge Panel of your business show up for company name when you search for it. This seems to be some sort of Google My Business penalty, as GMB is doing something to the search results when you have too many categories selected. It might be not technically be a penalty, but it’s some sort of issue regarding how Google is interpreting your business, and having too many categories is definitely the issue here (at least for my local business listing).