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A common question I get asked with respect to local SEO is whether you need a Google account (Gmail, YouTube, Google Play, or Google Drive) to be able to leave an online review for a business on Google Maps.

That is mostly true. You do need a Google account to leave a review, but the good news is you can create that account using any existing email address. It doesn’t have to be a Google email address. This YouTube video explains how.

The important part starts 28 seconds in where they say “Click Create Account”. You’ll basically be creating a Google review account using an email address of your choice.

You will have to verify your email address before you can leave a review but, as I said, it does not have to be a Google account. Google wants to make sure reviews are from real people and can be followed up upon if guidelines are not followed (e.g. they’re fake, spammy, slanderous, off-topic, offensive, or threatening).

Businesses often include a link to their Google My Business listing when they request a review of a client. If it helps, you can share the above video in any correspondence you provide them using this shortened web address (https://youtu.be/jVm0yGXJDRo).