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Written by
Katy Ratican
5 Jul 2021
4 minutes
How to transfer ownership claim for a Google Business listing
Everything a small business owner needs to know about transferring ownership of a Google My Business listing, with a step-by-step guide
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If you have a Google My Business (GMB) listing – and as a small business owner, you should have one – a situation may arise where you want to transfer its ownership. Even if you’ve been diligently using GMB, you may not know the process for changing its ownership. So, if you’re wondering how to transfer ownership rights for Google Business, here’s all you need to know.

Why do you need to transfer your GMB ownership?

Before we get to the transfer, let’s understand why you might need to do this. Your business is a combination of everything you own and that includes all your digital assets. These will include your GMB listing, your website, listings on other platforms and social media handles.

Your brand equity is spread over these assets and anyone buying your brand needs access to these. Of all these, GMB is significant because it’ll let the new management collect and manage your Google Reviews. As you’d know by now, Google Reviews are crucial to your online reputation.

Usually, you may have to transfer your ownership in any of these three situations.

Direct transfer

This is a straightforward change when you sell your independent business and need to transfer. In all likelihood, the new owners may be aware of your GMB listing as that’s one of the first things they’ll check (which is another reason why you should be serious about your Google My Business).

Delayed transfer

Maybe you sold your business a while ago but for some reason, the listing was not transferred. Now the new owners are requesting a change of ownership.

Internal transfer

As a small business manager, you were in charge of all things digital but now you’re either leaving the company or taking charge of a new location. This means that you’ve to transfer the ownership to the new manager.

How to transfer your GMB ownership

As the primary owner

You can easily transfer the ownership of your GMB listing using the following procedure:

  1. Go to your GMB listing

  2. In case your business has several locations, choose the location whose ownership you want to change

  3. Choose Users from the menu on the left

  4. Now choose the new owner as the Primary owner. Click on the box that appears next to their name, towards the right

  5. Choose Primary owner

  6. Now click on Transfer and then on Done. The primary ownership of the GMB profile will be immediately transferred

Remember that you can do this only if you’re the Primary owner of the GMB listing.

As a site manager

What if you don’t have sole ownership rights? Let’s say that you’re a franchisee managing the location of a fast-food chain. How do you manage the GMB profile for your particular location?

You can sign in as a site manager. You can go to Google Maps and Search and look for the Business Profile under claimed locations. There, you’ll find the sign-up link for site managers.

To ensure accuracy, site managers are verified by Google. But if you are the owner, you’ll have the authority to add or remove other owners who have access, from your GMB account.

This is how to transfer a claim for Google Business as a seller. If you’re selling or exiting the business, you can initiate the procedures laid out above. But the buyer can also initiate the process to transfer ownership rights to your GMB listing.

Initiated by the buyer

The new owner can send you an email requesting the transfer. They’ll have to send it to the email with which you signed up for your GMB profile. You can click on the link in the email and go directly to the page where you can transfer your Google Business.

Let’s say that the email that you signed up with is an old one that you hardly check anymore. In that case, if you don’t respond to the transfer request, Google will automatically transfer the ownership. But for this, the new owner will have to prove that they own the business now.

In short

Transferring ownership for Google Business doesn’t take longer than a couple of minutes. If you’re selling your small business, it’s an important step that you should take at the earliest opportunity. It’ll ensure that all the goodwill and brand equity that you’ve built over the years will be safely transferred to the new owner.

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