How much time is needed before an address is hidden?
7:14 pm on May 21, 2012 (gmt 0)
I found you have to hide your address on google places if you work home and not receive costumers in person. I did for one listing but the address is still showing in Google maps. (changed it 2 o 3 days ago...)
Does just need some time or what?
8:24 pm on May 21, 2012 (gmt 0)
Yes it can take up to a week before the address goes away.
WARNING - If you get a call in the meantime asking about your address and if you have a storefront - be advised Google India is calling lots of folks. They sometimes don't understand English well so be prepared to say very clearly:
"Yes I have a home office BUT I already hid my address."
Because I think the callers from India are working off of outdated lists because even people who's listings have hidden addresses for a couple weeks are getting their Place pages deleted sometimes. We're getting multiple complaints a day at the Google Places forum.
I got a call 2 weeks after I hid my address and had to keep saying over and over "I already hid my address, do not delete my listing!" He didn't seem to understand until 3rd try.
6:47 pm on May 26, 2012 (gmt 0)
So the thing is if you work home you have to hid the address right? Is that what Google want's isn't it? I've heard if you hid the address your business doesn't show at all in Google places. Is that true?
7:09 pm on May 26, 2012 (gmt 0)
"So the thing is if you work home you have to hid the address right?"
The key is if you work from home and DON'T see customers there, you have to hide the address. But even if you have an office and DON'T see customers there you should hide the address.
So the emphasis should not be home office, the emphasis should be on whether you have an office that is open to the public. Google does not want to deliver a bad user experience by having users use maps, drive across town to go to what they think is a business and end up at an apartment with no one home.
Here is how the specific guideline reads:
"If you don't conduct face-to-face business at your location, you must select the "Do not show my business address on my Maps listing" option within your dashboard. If you don't hide your address, your listing may be removed from Google Maps."
It doesn't really hurt ranking though now. It may have in the past. Check for yourself. Do a bunch of searches for "city + keyword". Try different cities and keywords like carpet cleaners, moving company, plumbers, exterminators. You'll see a bunch of listings that rank #1 even though they have address hidden (even above listings that show address).
Keep in mind too, that right now about 70% of local searches are pulling the BLENDED algo which is about 95% based on organic ranking factors, not Places ranking factors.