Google’s Advanced Verification
How does Advanced Verification work?
Google arranges a video call with the company using its Google Hangouts platform.
“Please be at your business location during the call,” Google tells businesses. “If you operate your business out of your vehicle, have the vehicle nearby during the call. Be sure to have with you any official documentation related to your business.”
How do shoppers use the service?
Let’s say you want a garage door repaired. Until recently, if you typed “dallas garage door repair” in a search box, you’d find companies that spent the most on advertising. They’d pop atop search results.
Now, those companies, some of whom engaged in unethical — even criminal — behavior, no longer appear. Only companies that pass verification appear on top with the coveted check of approval.
Since most people never go beyond the first page of search results, the goal is to find honest companies up top.
Often, the results will show companies that operate businesses near you. Fly-by-nighters and crooks are now supposed to have a difficult time getting traction on Google.
The first page of Google results is the most precious real estate in advertising. The Watchdog hopes this helps consumers find honest repair people. We’ll watch closely how this works.