I have a hosting client (have hosted them ~12 years now), who hired an 'SEO Consultant' back at the start of the year - the consultant proceeded to do basically nothing, so they dumped them.. Couple of days later all the pages on their site were edited to remove all meta tags - thankfully we keep a diff of site changes every day, so once they noticed their rankings dropping, we spotted it, and were able to roll them back to the day before it happened, and change their FTP details. At the same time, their google places listing, which had been coming up #1 for 'hotel canberra', 'functions canberra', and 'conferences canberra' for a good 2-3 years, started showing up on about page five of the results in google maps, so we're assuming something was changed on the Places entry as well..
I posted a couple of questions to the google help discussion boards, as the places entry says it's an 'owner verified listing', but noone at the client knows anything about it. I was asking if there was any way to find out WHO the owner was.. Big zip of replies to that, so after a bit of reading of the forums, I went and created them a google account (as webmaster in theirdomain, so they don't have any hassles if staff or contractors change, etc), and created a google places entry. As expected after reading some of the help replies, it asked if I wanted to claim the existing listing, which I did.. - went through phone authentication (btw, that's seriously painful that it wants phone auth EVERY time you make a change, when you're 500km from the client!), and a few days later the new listing appeared in the search results..
Although it now seems to have disappeared - even when searching by the exact title.. - All I get is the existing one?? (Kurrajong Hotel Canberra, btw)
is anyone able to give me any pointers on either a) finding out who the 'verified owner' of the original listing (I can tell the difference between the two, the original says barton, canberra, act. the new says barton, act) is, and somehow transferring it across to the client.. or b) actually properly replace the old listing with the new one I created?
I was under the impression that if you 'claimed' an existing listing, the existing listing would dissappear, and the new one take it's place.. - but that doesn't seem to have happened, infact the new listing which WAS showing up a week ago, is no longer showing in searches..
Any thoughts MUCHLY appreciated - While I've done a LOT with the google maps API for vehicle tracking etc, I haven't had anything to do with the Google Places part of it, and I'm seriously confused with what's going on..