Every business wants its name to rank at the top of Google searches, but the Better Business Bureau says a high number of Montana businesses are complaining about an enormous number of phone solicitation calls from people who say they are from Google.
"There are so many unscrupulous telemarketers and con artists out there that it can be hard to tell if you are getting a real call from Google. If the caller says, "I'm calling from Google" the odds of actually getting a business owner on the phone goes up. Google is aware of this abuse and they created a page to list all the potential Google scams so business will know the difference. Google will not charge for inclusion in Google My Business or Google Search. It will not offer to improve your search ranking or manage your business's online profile. Google won't ask you for your password or verification code. You should never provide sensitive information to a caller," said Dan Buchta, the Montana Marketplace Director of the Better Business Bureau.
Buckta advises businesses to watch out for some common scams that use the Google name.
There are three very common scams that are used to target small businesses here in Montana. The Google top placement or the SEO scam claims can guarantee top placement in Google Search or AdWords. There are no guarantees. Watch out for fake invoices for Google Maps. Google doesn't charge for inclusion for your business on Google Maps. The Google AdSense scam claims you have a balance in your AdSense account that is refundable to you if you pay a security Deposit," said Buchta.
The BBB says you need to remember three things to be able to tell the difference between an actual call from Google, or a call from a scammer.
"Google won't use robocalls. Google won't call to update your front-page listing or ask you to claim your free website. If you are continually being contacted by and are on the do not call registry list, you can file a complaint at donotcall.gov and bbb.org/scamtracker," said Buchta.