Google My Business: How to Use The ‘Located In’ Feature Effectively

By Sal Commisso / February 22, 2021 / Search Engine Optimization

Google My Business released the “Located In” feature in 2018, which allowed businesses like stores within a shopping center or mall, to be displayed as such in Google Search. Making it even easier for consumers to find businesses.

Before this change, the only way to access this feature was dealing with Google My Business support as there was no way for a brand to make the update manually.

In the example here, the main listing is a local shopping center, Crossgates Commons Plaza, with the child listing being the Home Depot.

Google My Business listing showing important details like address and hours

As you can see, the Home Depot listing shows as “Located In: Crossgates Commons Plaza.”

Google My Business for The Home Depot showing location, hours, and COVID-19 safety protocols

What Google overlooked was the fact that this feature applies to a variety of businesses, not just shopping malls and plazas.

What about office buildings that house dozens of different businesses? Or a business that has multiple departments listed on Google My Business all at the same location?

For a consumer, displaying all of the important information is vital. And it can be just as important for businesses to ensure their information is readily available.

When it comes to choosing between your business and a competitor, it’s likely that a consumer will pick the brand that is easiest to do business with.

We’ve recently seen several business listings gain access to this feature, such as the Garden Center at Home Depot, which is part of our example above.

Google My Business listing for The Home Depot Garden Center giving location information and phone number

The Garden Center is not a separate business from Home Depot, but rather a department within the store. Previously this listing was not shown as located in Home Depot but has since changed.

The best part is that the main parent listing (The Home Depot in this example) has links to every child listing under the “Departments” section.

An example that my colleagues at Elevation 10K and I are closer to, involves some of our automotive dealership clients.

Google My Business is known for creating “phantom listings” for each department inside of a car dealership.

What this means is that Google dropped additional pins for services relevant to your business such as Service and Parts Departments without your knowledge or approval.

This is obviously a cause for concern when it comes to consistency across your clients’ brands, but also grants an opportunity to claim these listings and improve your brand’s visibility on both search and maps.

We’ve recently discovered the “Located In” feature has popped up on some of these listings, with the ability to edit them manually through the “suggest an edit” feature rather than the Google My Business backend. (What are you doing Google??)

How to Check if Your Google My Business Listing Has the ‘Located In’ Feature

The easiest and most obvious way to check for this feature is by simply using Google Search. Search the name of your business listing so you are shown the Google My Business breakout box.

If you see the “Located In” section, then your listing has access to the feature.

If you don’t see it then you don’t currently have access. But don’t worry, you can always contact Google My Business Support, and they may be able to add it for you.

If that doesn’t sound appealing, or if you simply have bigger items to handle for your business, our digital marketing team can certainly help.

How to Edit the “Located In” Section on Google My Business

Out of all of the listings we manage that currently have this feature, we are unable to edit its information on the Google My Business platform. (Again, Google what are you doing?)

For some reason beyond our knowledge, the only way to edit the “Located In” information is through the “suggest an edit” feature. But, that doesn’t stop us from completing our clients’ profiles as needed. Where there’s a will, there’s a way.

Google My Business listing for Crossgates Commons Plaza highlighting the Suggest and edit function

Simply search for your business listing and click the “suggest an edit” link inside the breakout box.

Suggest an edit feature for Google My Business showing where to change a business name, location, or hours

Then click “Change name or other details.”

Google My Business listing showing how to mark a business as being located within another building

Lastly, find the “Location Within” section and search for the parent Google My Business listing and hit send.

It’s important for brands to maintain their digital presence, and Google My Business can certainly help. But with options like “suggest an edit” being readily available for searchers, business owners and marketers alike need to keep an eye out for edits from someone not affiliated with the business.

Why Does This Matter?

This feature becoming widely available means a lot for businesses that focus on a few different avenues, or have multiple departments with differing hours or other information.

Going back to our automotive dealership example, each dealership has multiple departments, sales, parts, and service. Each department operates somewhat independent of each other, each with different hours, contact information, etc.

What these separate, but combined, listings allow for is continuity throughout our clients’ brands as well as increased organic visibility and reach.

If a user is searching for a dealership’s service department hours and is shown the parent listing, they will be shown incorrect information such as the sales phone number and hours.

With the ability to have a listing for each department, the user can be shown accurate and up-to-date information for their specific search query.

In terms of organic reach, each separate listing can focus on their specific target audience.

Previously, with the restrictions to Google My Business categories and description character limits, it was quite hard to target all facets of the ideal automotive dealership customer. Or a customer for any other business for that matter.

Access to the “Located In” feature makes it much easier to target auto sales with the main listing, and service and parts each on their own respective listing for the department.

We’re anxiously awaiting for Located In to become available for every industry.

To make sure you’re staying ahead of the competition, allow our digital marketers to help your brand. Contact us today to get more information about Located In ad how we can help set your business up for success.