Warning!! Google Apps for Business: Dream or Nightmare

Real Estate Agent with The Gibsons at eXp Realty

For those who do not want to read through my whole post, the bottom line is that if you are using Google Apps for Business for your own domain on google servers:  DO NOT Create your Google+ account or business pages or YouTube Channels from and any account in your domain.  If you ever cancel your Google Apps account, they will be lost.

For many years I have been using Google Apps for Business for my team email addresses and other features and Apps they offer.  I loved it.  The Dream: using my own domain with the features of the gmail interface (better email search than Outlook is my favorite benefit).

I downsized my team in 2013 to myself and a showing agent (need to rebuild based on lessons learned. Another post).  Wanting to do some budget cuts I decided I really did not need to pay for Google Apps anymore, especially since Keller Williams moved our email addresses to Google Apps and the features I use most are there.

Anxiety Google Apps for BusinessSo What is the Nightmare? You Might Ask.

Well, I made a plan to move everything to my KW account on google apps.  I moved my domain over to my hosting company, Bluehost. Then moved all my mail and docs to my KW account. I then added my email address to that account. Success.

I moved all my contacts. Success.  I moved my showing agent's email as an addition POP account on his personal gmail account.  He didn't use it much, so did not have much to move.  All successful.

So now I just had my apps domain account left on google's servers.  I noticed my Google+ account, business page, and YouTube Channels were tied to my TheresaGibson.com domain on Google Apps.  So I contacted Google Apps support to make sure that if I took the last step to delete my domain from Google Apps that I would still have access to my Google+ profile and my YouTube account.

"I believe so," he said.  He then checked with a co-worker to make sure and they both said that I would not lose access to my accounts on those services.  

So I proceeded to delete my domain from google servers and the nightmare began.  My Google+ account was gone, my YouTube personal channel was gone, and my business channel was gone.  I was a fool and had not backed up about 6 listing photo slideshows I had created there (not too many, thank God).  

I am so thankful that I had not been the biggest YouTuber yet. I did not lose too many videos. However, I have to recreate my subscriptions, redecorate my channels.  Hours of work.  I had to redo Google Authorship for all my sites.  I am sure there are some things I will need to do that I don't even know I lost yet.

My main gripe is that Google support reps don't even know their own product.  After this happened. I realized that it really didn't make sense that I would still be able to access these things.  You can't have a google+ account unless it is tied to a gmail address or a google apps domain.  Once my domain name was not longer on google servers, any accounts tied to it were deleted and unrecoverable.

Support gave me things to try to recover, but nothing worked.

My advice is to never create Google+ profiles, business pages, or YouTube accounts/channels with your email addresses tied to a Google Apps domain. Or make sure you migrate everything to a new accounts on a gmail address BEFORE you delete your domain.  

If I had know that all would be lost, I would have moved my content over before deleting my domain. Howeve, that is still a lot of work to set up new gmail connected accounts and redecorate and add the content back in.  I still would have had to redo google authorship.

The goal of this post it to keep others from having their dream turn into a nightmare.


Comments (13)

Dick and Dixie Sells
Sells Real Estate, LLC - Trinity, FL
Realtors, Tampa Bay Florida Homes For Sale

Tracy That is really good to know. Thank you so much for sharing this with the rest of us!

Jan 31, 2014 11:16 PM
Jeff Fritzson: Frisco Real Estate Pro
Jeff Fritzson Real Estate, Ebby Halliday Realtors - Frisco, TX
Your Success is My Focus!

Tracy - I am so sorry for yopur experience. WhIle I really enjoy utilizing Google, sometimes their business support is not at the level it should be especially for small business owners. Thank you for letting us know as I was thinking about some changes and this might have been one.

Jan 31, 2014 11:25 PM
Theresa "Tracy" Gibson
The Gibsons at eXp Realty - Matawan, NJ
Your Needs Served

Thanks for the comments Dick & Dixie, and Jeff.  I just want to mention that I still love Google Apps and would probably use it again the future.  I just won't tie my whole internet strategy to that account.   Lesson learned.

Jan 31, 2014 11:35 PM
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Tracy - wow that is a horror story.  Sorry that you had to go through it but thanks for warning the rest of us.  I did not know you could use your own domain on google apps.  I am glad I didn't try.

Feb 01, 2014 01:30 AM
Kathy Streib
Cypress, TX
Retired Home Stager/Redesign

Tracy- yikes!  I do love Googleand I'm sorry that you had to experience it all.  

Feb 01, 2014 02:51 AM
Kaye Swain
Keller Williams Real Estate Roseville CA - Roseville, CA
Your Roseville Real Estate Agent

Oh wow! I had an internet issue today with one of my KW sites but it was small potatos compared to this! Thanks for the heads up! I've been wondering about switching TO the apps but I think I'll stick with what I've got. Hoping it doesn't take you too many more hours to fix!!!  

Feb 03, 2014 02:24 PM
Troy Erickson AZ Realtor (602) 295-6807
Good Company Real Estate - Chandler, AZ
Your Chandler, Ahwatukee, and East Valley Realtor

Tracy, sorry that you lost so much info, and had to take the time to re-create things. I am very happy that you decided to share this valuable information. I had a similar issue with gmail. I accidentally hit delete on a draft email, and everything I had been working on for the last hour was gone. Not quite as bad as your situation. Google staff should have known how to take better care of you.

Feb 09, 2014 01:16 PM
Bahman Davani, CM at Texas Five Star Realty, Plano, TX (214) 457-7055
Texas Five Star Realty, Plano Texas - Frisco, TX
Homes for Sale in Plano, Frisco, Prosper, Allen TX

The problems is sometimes those people don't know their products and sometimes they are lazy and don't care about the clients and creat these knids of problems. I have encountered several similar problems with other companies and service providers. That is a shame!

Feb 27, 2014 07:24 PM
Nicholas Costantino
Engel & Völkers - Hoboken, NJ
CRS, ASP, e-Pro

Tracy, sorry you had to go thru all of that it sounds like a nightmare. My company is looking to switch from outlook to Gmail in the coming weeks. Can you tell me how you like it besides this debacle of course.

Mar 05, 2014 08:42 PM
Stefan Winter
Real Estate in IL & NV | Owner of Real Estate Web Tech | Daily Vlogger - Las Vegas, NV
Owner - Winter Group & Real Estate Web Tech

That was my biggest worry when using anykind of paid email to set up accounts like youtube. With gmail being free and them letting us be logged into several accounts at once, it is a bit of a pain but I make it work. Great advice for anyone working with google apps.

Mar 06, 2014 02:56 AM
Jaclyn Erwin
Jackson Erwin Realty, Inc. - Charlotte, NC


Thanks for the heads up regarding Google+. I am still learning the system and your post has definitely giving me some food for thought. Thanks Again! 

Mar 29, 2014 11:55 PM

Google used to be great, but everything they now do (with the exception of their search engine, (which BTW happens to bury negative posts about Google like this one) all of their product are now crap.

My company just switched from Lotus Notes to Google Apps. It's probably ok for the people in-house who have big screen monitors and are connected all day. But for field people like me it is a nightmare! Their interface is cluttered, unusable, un-intuitive, and ugly. It's also the same as the free interface used by Kindergartners and teenyboppers. Plus there is no offline solution (gmail offline is a joke and nothing provides your calendar offline). I'm ready to quit simply because my company went to this (and I hated Lotus notes). At least Outlook online is structured for business, why in the world would any company with field people use Google Apps for Business?

May 22, 2016 10:16 PM
Valeria Mola
SIB Realty - Miami, Sunny Isles Beach - Sunny Isles Beach, FL
305-607-0709 SIB Realty Condos for Sale and Rent

Great post, thank you, a lot of information! Now I am your follower.

Sep 09, 2019 02:03 PM