This has been going on for a while now and I have addressed it before, but I have seen a new influx of fake Google calls to business owners. Please be very careful when someone calls you saying that they are “Google”. I’ve even met with prospects who told me that another company worked with Google or had a deal with Google to get them better placement. This is simply not true. The only relationship you can have with them is as a Google Certified Partner. I am a Google Certified Partner and they don’t give me special pricing or improved placement in organic results. You should be careful of all phone scams and make sure that they are true before giving your information out, but for some reason these fake Googlers have come across my radar a bit more in recent weeks after not hearing much about it for a while.
There are a few versions to be wary of:
- Marketing company pitching you they have a “Special relationship” with Google to get better placement: As I addressed above, this simply isn’t true. I actually worked with someone who had used one of these companies and they actually marked up their price per click by over 100%. Stay away from these people. If they lie about this, they can lie about other things.
- Trying to get account info: Another false Google scam is people that will call you and say they need to address something on your Google account. They will then ask for information, etc. Do not give it to them.
- Claiming Your Website or Listing: Some have gotten calls from fake Googlers claiming they were calling to update their business information or claim their website. Again, this doesn’t happen from Google. Google typically doesn’t ever reach out to businesses unless it is initiated by you due to a problem or confirming a pin for your business. But they don’t proactively do this.
- Charge for Inclusion in Google Places or Search: Google does not charge people for showing up here. Hiring companies to know how to handle this process best, and paying them to help you is ok, but Google will not charge for this and certainly won’t call you to get you to pay for inclusion.
Basically you shouldn’t give anyone your information over the phone, whether they say they are Google or not, but if you are really interested in what is being offered and want more information. Have them email you the information and check the domain of the email. Is it @google.com? Probably not. If it isn’t run away, if you haven’t already.