Look before you leap! Learn 15 of the top 45 most common local SEO pitfalls – and learn how to avoid them yourself. Check out Chris and Matt as they give you some great tips on local SEO!
In the potatoes:
This week’s article is “45 Local SEO Pitfalls” by Miriam Ellis over at Moz. You can also listen on Podomatic: https://www.podomatic.com/podcasts/ewebstyle/episodes/2017-08-09T07_28_13-07_00
2017-08–04 Podcast 385
Chris: We should be good. Hi and welcome to the SEO Podcast: Unknown Secrets of Internet Marketing. My name is Chris Burres, owner of eWebResults and this is– oh wait. Paging Dr. eWeb, paging Dr. eWeb.
Matt: Hello, hello.
Matt: Sorry I was performing PPC surgery in the other room.
Chris: Yeah, when he goes in on PPC surgery, it’s deep. It’s elbows deep, it’s like shoulder deep, it’s massive surgery. Welcome to the podcast–
Matt: I’m seeing a lot of bad surgeries.
Chris: Yeah, yeah. A lot of botched.
Matt: A lot of botched stuff coming to us and we gotta fix it up. So I want y’all to know that there’s– not all PPC surgeons are the same, so I just wanna give you that tip. Not all PPC surgeons are the same, a lot of the PPC campaigns that we see in here: pretty bad, pretty bad. So just keep that in mind.
Chris: Alright, so this is podcast number 385 and none of my notes have come across here. So that’s not good.
Matt: But we have PITFs.
Chris: We have PITFs. Why don’t you jump into PITFs and I’ll get a device that actually has my notes and I’ll be right back.
Chris: That’s very weird, it did not come across. Thank you Microsoft.
Matt: Well, so I just wanted to give a quick shout-out to Ashley Elkins. We were talking earlier today and he was coming to us with a campaign, he’s buying foreclosed houses and I just wanted to let you know that we’re working on a campaign like that right now. Built a phenomenal campaign, buyer cast house, buyer house fast, kinda buying foreclosures and I just wanted to give you a punch in the face and let you know we have some expertise in that area and if any of you out there are real estate moguls or wannabes, definitely give us a ring, we can help you out with brand positioning and authority, as well as helping build out some really strong PPC campaigns. So some of the other people that reached out to us are: Ashley, “@BestSEOPodcast Any strategies for choosing keywords for pages like testimonials, contacts – where there’s not a ton of content?” Okay.
Matt: So something that’s just really been interesting and as we move into this article today, we’re gonna be talking about SEO, and one of the things that we’ve been seeing on our monthly results calls with clients, is when I’m looking at the data I’m seeing that the thank you pages– well that’s one where the goals or conversions are being tracked to, but something that kind of addresses this is the gallery.
Chris: Right, a good example, yeah.
Matt: Yeah, a good example is looking at the traffic–
Chris: By the way if you didn’t notice I’m back, I went into the other room and I walked by the surgery room, it was not looking pretty in there. And so we’re gonna have to get you back there pretty quickly. But yeah, a great example. A lot of people will throw up gallery pages, and we were just kind of working with a client just earlier this week where we recognize that the gallery pages is one of the most visited pages and–
Matt: No selling being done on that page at all.
Chris: Yeah, there’s no– usually you don’t do any selling on the gallery page and that’s a big no-no. So the real answer is: add content. Add the content that you believe that particular page needs so that it can actually, one: draw SEO attention. So the example she gave, “Why do you really want people to get to that particular page?” What page was that?
Matt: Any strat–
Chris: The testimonials page. Like why do you want people to get to that page from a search? You really want people to get to that page from they’re doing research and they want to go to the testimonials.
Matt: And to answer your question a little bit more, you want your string testimonials all throughout your website, right? So you wanna see it above the fold, on the homepage, just spread throughout on all the other pages we were talking about. Every page on the website shouldn’t be like just a brochure for your company but a true landing page.
Chris: An actual landing page, yeah.
Matt: A landing page, put those testimonials in there and then on the contact form, you could upsell somebody something else after they’ve filled out a form, but that’s typically where your tracking’s being put.
Chris: Yeah, yeah.
Matt: And you would block that from Google.
Chris: So the point about having testimonials everywhere is: if it’s valuable for your business, then you should put it on the pages that people are actually visiting. So hopefully that answered your question. That was Ashley, right? Punch in the face to Ashley.
Matt: And our long-winded answer’s there.
Chris: Those were not tweets.
Matt: Yeah. Being on for real, you can longer be an SEO checkbox person, you gotta be a comprehensive content creator.
Chris: True that.
Matt: True that. Punch in the face to you.
Chris: Thank you. Let’s skip those and we’ll get back to those.
Chris: We’re about to do the tip from the previous podcast. Since I really haven’t gone forward, we’ll pick that up. The Dr.eWeb has just gone nuts here. He’s over–
Matt: It’s been–
Chris: He’s stressed from the PPC–
Matt: It’s been a stressful day, there’s been a lot going on.
Chris: Yeah. So we do have a tip from the previous podcast, and that tip is…
Matt: “Use the paid strategy to promote great content.”
Chris: Yeah, so you spend all this time on great content, right? You make the great content, you do the research, you’ve got the crosslinks, you’ve got the multimedia, video and images and now you’re like, “Let’s throw it out there into the ether and hope something happens with it.” No. Create a paid content strategy to support that content.
Matt: Build a funnel, and drawing traffic to a blog post, it’s a great strategy, we’re actually talking about that on the phone today actually.
Chris: Yup, absolutely.
Matt: As funny as that is.
Chris: Subscribe, follow–
Chris & Matt: Boom!
Chris: Alright, so let’s get back to our content which is on this different device, for some reason not working on the iPad. Alright, so what we’d like to say is: we are filmed live here in Houston, Texas, and Matt and I, we are your friendly local neighborhood Top Position Snatchers! And we do have a mantra, but we’re actually gonna change our mantra.
Matt: Yeah, we are gonna change it.
Chris: Maybe our mantra is we do CPR on internet marketing campaigns? I don’t know.
Matt: Yeah, we do PPC surgery and we do SEO surgery.
Chris: Yeah. Right.
Matt: We’re the SEO doctors. Okay, I don’t know if that’s a branded term out there, I’ve been dealing with that lately. Trademark terms, but also–
Chris: It probably isn’t. You owe somebody some money. Alright. So hey, I wanna jump into this review we had this pretty quick. This is from Arie Ardasis and it is of course 5 stars!
Matt: 5 stars!
Chris: “Top notch informative podcast! I have learned a ton. Uppercut to you guys!” Punch in the face to you too, Arie.
Matt: You know we’re gonna have to stop beating people up.
Chris: You can turn off video. Okay, cool.
Matt: Because I have to keep doing surgery on these people. Fixing and patching them up and everything. So we need be need to be nicer, you know?
Chris: Okay, yup. Need to be nicer.
Matt: Yeah, like let’s stop beating people up, you know? Yeah.
Chris: Well we can beat them up when they bring to us like botched surgery PPC campaign.
Matt: Well, let’s beat up the competition, okay?
Chris: I like that.
Matt: Let’s beat up the competition.
Chris: I like that. Alright–
Matt: I’ve got some strategy points.
Chris: So we got a teaser article. This is, “45 local SEO strategy pitfalls that you might have.” This article is by Miriam Ellis, right? And so if you’re in some sort of position where you have an electronic device, you should actually tweet #SEOPodcast, this is 385. Tag us @BestSEOPodcast, @eWebResults, and also tag Miriam Ellis. Now she has a unique Twitter handle. It’s Miriam M-I-R-I-A-M, underscore Ellis, E-L-L-I-S, and then she has another underscore (Miriam_Ellis_). If you don’t use the second underscore.
Matt: Is she local here?
Chris: So she seems like–
Matt: Because in the article she was talking about Houston, Dallas.
Chris: Yeah, in the suburbs of both Dallas and Houston. She’s actually out of San Francisco.
Matt: Oh okay. I was surprised.
Chris: I was like you, I’m reading the article and it’s like, it looks like she’s out of Houston.
Matt: And also just throw back here, throw back here. We got Pitfall Atari, okay? For all you lovers out there of gaming, so just wanted to let you know.
Chris: How many hours did you waste on Pitfall?
Matt: You know, I really– I didn’t document my hours when I was younger, but they were a lot.
Chris: Yeah, not like now.
Chris: Alright so if this is the first time you’ve listened to the podcast: Howdy and welcome to the podcast. If you’ve listened to this podcast before, you know what we’re about to skip. Here’s how it works: we run a contest each and every week and the way the contest works is if we get 10 shikos– you know what a shiko is, right?
Chris: It’s a share, a like, or a follow, right?
Chris: So it’s an eWeb branded term, shiko. If we get 10 shikos–
Matt: I think we need to run like a competition or a contest where there’s a reward.
Chris: For a better name? Oh yeah, yeah.
Matt: This ongoing contest where nothing gets done–
Chris: Here’s what happens though.
Matt: I’ve got this, I’m just throwing out. Online if he doesn’t know this.
Chris: So we do get 10 likes or 10 shikos.
Matt: We do, yeah.
Chris: And we do get reviews.
Matt: Yeah, we do, we do.
Chris: Or we go through the painful one and half minute process of telling you exactly how to leave us review, which we will skip today because we do have 10 shikos and 1 review.
Matt: So I was thinking the whole kind of UP Social thing, right?
Matt: Where we could have a discount on services or something like that if they share it with 5 friends and then take the screenshot and show it to us.
Matt: So I’m changing it up a little bit just for fun.
Chris: I like it, and we’re actually about to have a document. How would you like to have a really kind of concise place where you could get, I don’t know, the 17 most valuable SEO tips from our podcast, in one document.
Matt: 17, why 17?
Chris: Because it was–
Matt: 17 is a great number, don’t get me wrong.
Chris: Isn’t it cool?
Matt: Yeah, 17 is a good number, I’m just curious.
Chris: So the reason it is 17 is– let’s move on to the next subject.
Matt: The year, the year.
Chris: There we go, 2017. That’s as good as any. I don’t know I just thought, you know, you get 20 and you’re tired of seeing 20, you get 10, 15, let’s do something different.
Matt: We’ve done a lot of statistical data on this and 17’s a keynote.
Chris: Most of that statistical data you’ve seen live. Alright, so we are gonna skip how you do leave us a review. We will tell you how you can actually connect with us and shiko us.
Chris: 19? He wants 19?
Matt: You want 19?
Chris: Manny Oliverez wants 19.
Chris: I don’t know.
Chris: Sammie’s here, she’s the one who’s working on that document. Oh, she’s giving a big no. She’s tired, 17 was way too much.
Matt: Okay, bonus content, bonus content. We’re gonna say bonus content.
Chris: Send an email to Sammie to convince her to add those two new ones so you can get your full 19. Alright, so here’s all of our profiles on those platforms. You can get to them just by going to places like Facebook.com/
Chris: And then we’ve got Stitcher– not Stitcher. Nope, that’s where you can leave us a review.
Matt: But you get the point right? It’s like, add eWebResults.
Chris: Oh wait, LinkedIn.com/company/
Chris: All of those will take you to our profiles on those platforms and please shiko us while you’re there. Look, if you’re a PHP genius or a WordPress guru, we are probably looking for you. Go ahead and leave an audio résumé– by the way if you don’t know what an audio résumé is, and that’s kinda scaring you, don’t worry about it.
Matt: Good, good.
Chris: Just pick up the phone, make this phone call, you’ll find out exactly what you need to do: 713-510-7846. If you would like a free comprehensive website profit analysis, just go to eWebResults.com and click the green button. Green similar to the Sprite that is now on Matt’s head.
And then that’s it. We’ve got some– I’ve got some news here and then we’ll get the rest of these PITFs that are surging as thrown across the room, inconvenient–
Matt: See? That’s my concentration, my quick hands.
Chris: Alright, here you can have that.
Chris: ‘Cause we promised a PITF earlier today. So we gotta do that.
Matt: I gave it while you were out.
Chris: Oh you got that one? Okay. Ashley punch in the face. So here’s some news, “Google turns off instant search,” right? So remember instant search is as you’re typing– so there’s kind two things, right? You’ll still see search suggestions, so as you’re typing it will continue to make suggestions as you’re typing, but it used to be that as you were typing, each letter you added it would actually do a search, right?
Chris: It would be best guess of the search. They’re turning that off and the reason they’re turning it off is ‘cause all the reliance on how many searches are happening on mobile devices. So they just wanna get that rid of, it gets rid of a little bit of anguish.
Matt: Is it still gonna be across the bottom? I haven’t read that up yet.
Chris: Well, no. It’s still gonna do the search.
Matt: You know across the bottom where it’s gonna give you the choices?
Chris: Yeah, no. It’s still gonna do the search, I mean those are search suggestions.
Matt: Okay, okay. So it’s not gonna drop down?
Chris: It literally would provide search results – and this is interesting – one of the rap groups that I really like called Tech N9ne–
Chris: Actually as I was doing a search, I went Tech and then put the n in nine instead of Tech News, I put it real quick. And then boom, there was this rap group and I really liked. I started listening to them because of that, so that kinda of serendipity. So it’s not gonna show search results–
Matt: Just on mobile?
Chris: On both workstation and mobile.
Matt: They want you to pay for the clicks. They want you to pay for the data.
Chris: That’s a general statement that’s probably true and that was actually something that we were concerned about when that came out was: okay now look, you type a letter and a search result shows up. Is that an impression? They type the next letter, another search result shows up.
Matt: Was it showing up?
Chris: It was showing. The actual search results were showing. That’s what they got rid of, the search suggestions are still there.
Matt: Excellent, okay.
Chris: And then Google on Image Search has added badges. You got recipes, and videos, and products, and–
Matt: Let’s attach this to the podcast. This link of this update.
Matt: ‘Cause I think it’s important, I actually haven’t read it.
Matt: So if we could put that on the–
Chris: On the agenda, the to-do list or whatever.
Matt: Yeah, on the to-do list, yeah. So I think it’s important for people to know. That’s a big change.
Chris: So what I’m gonna do Sammie – this is probably for you – we’ll add the URL for these kind of news pieces and then we can get those added into the podcast, into the podcast notes.
Matt: Yeah, cool. Cool.
Chris: Very cool. Let’s see, what else do I have? I think that’s it. Let’s finish up our PITFs.
Matt: Alright, @UltraTHCDetox, “Best podcast! They really are the best!” Thank you, appreciate that.
Chris: My only question is, where you detoxing from THC when you sent this tweet? I’m just wondering.
Matt: Hey hey, it’s legal in some states.
Matt: And it’s a new industry and I think that there’s a lot of opportunity there and some friends in Denver– really big business, so you know.
Chris: Oh no, yeah.
Matt: Interesting, we just haven’t worked on any of those campaigns.
Matt: And it hasn’t trickled into–
Chris: Well we did do one a long time ago, that was interesting campaign, yeah.
Matt: You did? Oh okay. I personally haven’t.
Chris: A marijuana doctor who needed to be partaking of her prescriptions to mellow out. Alright–
Matt: So on that note, just really quickly. I was in a conference out in Silicon Valley and a guy that I connected with, he is actually selling us software that does all the billing and like just kinda the whole back end for people who want to get their THC license and turn their regular practice into like a wellness clinic where they offer it. Some really interesting stuff.
Enough on that. One more PITF. David Chessen, right?
Chris: Chessen? Yeah, yeah.
Matt: Chessen. “Love your work, I use my SEO background to win on Amazon. Need guess would love to share ideas.”
Chris: That’s an interesting idea.
Matt: So we’re actually gonna start to change up the format. You know–
Chris: Do more interviews, yeah.
Matt: We’re gonna start doing more interviews and so if you have an interest in being a guest on our show, we’re gonna create that process, figure that out and start kind of putting people on that.
Matt: We just haven’t– you know.
Chris: And I like the concept ‘cause we’ve actually done just a couple of little small projects, really consulting projects on Amazon, where we were just– No that we were Amazon experts, we’re certainly moving in that direction, but we have more expertise than the client, and so they engaged us to actually do some of the Amazon work. So incorporating the SEO strategies in Amazon is cool, a cool idea.
Matt: Yeah, no. I would love to talk to you, we have a client right now that basically is gonna be showing a freemium product.
Matt: And really from a distribution model, they were gonna ship it themselves, they were working with people over in China. They decided to go all the way through Amazon to get it promoted, and so what I was helping them do is set up a– them as an affiliate. So that they can drive traffic to their own site on Amazon. So because Amazon takes a big cut of it, and then for them to kind of get a little bit more back. So kind of interesting stuff that that’re working on Amazon.
Chris: Alright, so that is the potatoes of our podcast. It is time to get into the meat. Yes, we’re gonna talk about, I think it’s, “45 local SEO pitfalls that you wanna avoid,” and definitely–
Matt: This is gonna be a long podcast.
Chris: By the way we’re not doing all 40. That’s a good point. We are not gonna do all 45 today. We’re gonna do 15 today, so this will be broken down. Now, just some important note, this is really back to fundamentals. So we know that a lot of people who are listening to our podcast are DIY, right? They’re small business owners and those people are considering even starting up a business, so this is really fundamental, this first round of things is the, “Business plan.” That’s how fundamental it is.
Matt: So jumping in with this– what is that vibe–?
Chris: That’s my wife calling.
Chris: Don’t worry. It’s my wife calling.
Matt: Okay. I was like, “What’s going on?” So I think one of these things that there’s been some internal discussion here recently–
Matt: And a lot of small business owners are starting to run into– you know, there’s so many companies out there that are claiming they can do this, they can do that.
Matt: A lot of companies out of India. Nothing wrong with that, but really the way that Google is going and the direction that they’re heading, a lot of kind of these kind of black hat strategies or a lot of these things that used to work really well are not working as well, and really the format now is: make sure that you’re content is user experience driven and make sure that when they’re looking to do something on Google, you give them what they’re looking to do.
Matt: And if you create that user experience, that click-through– Google wants people to keep using Google, and Google keeps wanting people to click on it. That’s where bounce rates, click-through rates, all of that kind of stuff come into play and if you just keep that in mind as your driving factor, you’ll not run into trouble, but some of these things we’re about to get into could steer you in the wrong direction and might not be worth it anymore. Not to say some of them still don’t work, so there’s kind of a line.
Chris: Yeah. Yeah, and we’ll talk about where we sit on that line ‘cause it is pretty important. Alright, so I’m gonna just jump right in. These are, “Local SEO pitfalls that you want to avoid.” You had a note here. So it was like highlighted–
Matt: Okay, jumping in to the beginning of this article. It’s just talking about some of the pitfalls where you could get penalized by Google. Some of the things, for example, “A plumbing company fakes a string of locations by using their siblings’ houses to build citations,” like local SEO, putting them around town, or, “A dentist hires a notorious marketing firm to pay global workers for fictitious reviews.” So these were kind of two big– oh, “Auto dealership takes quick link building shortcut and ends up with a long-term search engine penalty.”
Chris: Search engine– disaster, yeah.
Matt: Yeah, so all those things are things–
Chris: Bad strategies, yeah.
Matt: Bad strategies and we have been in discussions with clients about the Dos and Don’ts of doing that and the risk you take. For example–
Chris: If you wanna go down that path.
Matt: If you wanna go down that path.
Chris: And I think there’s a bullet point. So we’ll kind of pick that up where it talks about that.
Matt: Okay, great. Alright.
Chris: Alright. So this is a business plan. So you’re starting a business and what are some of the local SEO pitfalls you could make? First is: you choose the name of your business as an, “Indistinct name,” right? So the example that she gave was a yacht club, right? But it’s really a men’s clothing shop. If your company– So think about Banana Republic, right? If you started a business today and you were selling clothing, you probably shouldn’t call it Banana Republic because it would be– well, one: it’s a trademark term. Two: if it wasn’t a trademark term, people don’t know what it is and so you’re kind of ambiguous with the name, an indistinct name. Now it’s okay, you understand if you’re gonna build a big brand out of it and eventually you get to the point where it’s Banana Republic. In fact if you Google Banana Republic right now, Banana Republic will come up and so will other clothing stuff, ‘cause Google knows that somebody looking Banana Republic is actually looking for clothing stuff.
Matt: So on that line, maybe a couple years ago, you would buy the domain BananaRepublicHouston.
Chris: Right, right.
Matt: BananaRepublicPhoenix, whatever, and then you would drive everything together and that’s starting to become real kind of spammy and you wanna limit yourself for doing that, it’s just– people don’t–
Chris: Yeah, we’ll talk about that. We’ve actually kind of consolidated some of our customers. Alright. So yeah, make sure you’ve got a distinct name that you can use that people know what you’re doing. And actually there was a good whiteboard Friday by Rand on Moz.com that was talking about domains and why you should do it and actually I think I get to that in this particular episode.
Next is a, “Limiting name.” So let’s say you’re a brand new business, right? Let’s say you’re going into, I don’t know, pressure washing and your name happens to be Peter, and–
Matt: Peter punch in the face.
Chris: Punch in the face, we owe him a report and he’s been dutifully calling us and we got back to the today. So you’re doing pressure washing, and in the city of Houston we’ve got a lot of suburbs and let’s say you live in a suburb that’s called, I don’t know Katy, so you do Katy pressure washing, but you gotta remember, maybe ultimately your bigger market is gonna be Houston, so be sure about naming your business that isn’t limiting where you work.
Matt: Well, so one of the debates, too, okay? And what we’re seeing a lot with clients, I’m seeing it a lot in PPC, is if you’re trying to build a brand name, okay? A name for example that’s not associated with the industry.
Matt: There’s kind of a line there because people don’t know who you are, and Coca-Cola and Sprite spend a lot of money building their brand.
Chris: So people know who they are, yeah.
Matt: Who know who they are and that distinguish themselves. So you gotta draw a fine line between a name that people understand as synonymous to what you do.
Matt: And I think that that’s really key.
Matt: You know? Like– well, we can’t use clients.
Chris: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Matt: But yeah, so keep going.
Chris: Yeah, perfect example. And so it just talks. Look, maybe you just need to be pressure washing in general or Houston Pressure Washing, just be mindful that you can put yourself in a box. I’ve actually read in other business books, you should be mindful about making you know, Burres Internet Marketing because at some point the goal of most businesses is for the owner to not be involved in the business, right? You should build your business to work without you, even if you’re gonna work in it forever. And when you put your name on it, you can have some challenges pulling yourself out of it later. Like, “Where’s Mr. Burres?” He’s no longer here. “Why’s it called Burres Marketing?” ‘Cause we haven’t changed the name yet. Next is, “Ineligible locations,” and this gets into what Matt was talking about. PO boxes, unstaffed virtual offices, if you don’t have a real office, it is actually better to use your home address. I’ve recommended that to people who have called in regularly. I know you wanna keep it private and etcetera. Make sure you deliver a good service and a good product if you’re gonna have your name there– home address. And then you could also list yourself in the directories that hide your address. There’s some of them that do that if you really have privacy concerns.
I can tell you we’ve got a client – and in this case we can talk about – Manning Pool Service. They’re actually opening locations throughout the city of Houston. They service those pools. They’re opening it because it’s gonna have operational efficiency. So Houston is a huge spread out city and so having somebody on one side, having an office where you can kinda go pick up chemicals or supplies or whatever, is convenient and effective, affordable from an operations standpoint. I believe that the biggest value that they’re gonna get is the kinda marketing value that’ll come out of that. And their real locations.
Matt: Will the local SEO market value– What you need to have is a staff location with the phone number.
Matt: That’s really the key.
Matt: And make sure it makes sense. So we were talking with another client as far as adding a new location. This one was out in California, but basically they had another office but they weren’t servicing that area.
Matt: So to get that local exposure and to get those inbound phone calls, it wasn’t beneficial at the time. So it’s something that I’d just keep in mind based on your business goals.
Chris: Excellent. Next is, “Undesirable location,” right? So what she’s talking about here is let’s say that you’re just outside the city of Houston. Now a lot of this was fixed with Google’s Possum update, but it’s still, if you’re gonna– dead Possum, right? If you’re gonna serve– as an example, if you’re gonna serve Houston and you have your location just outside of Houston, not Houston Proper, you can bump into some challenges placing well. Possum fixed a lot of that, but you still wanna keep that in mind. The best strategy is actually to find where the thickest abundance of your customers are and put your office in the middle of it, right? So then you’re taking full advantage of Google– how hyperlocal Google has becoming.
Matt: Well like the perfect example of that is healthcare right now.
Matt: In Houston there’s a giant med center, you used to have to go to the med center for the best medical service, now a lot of these doctors are having satellite offices a couple days of week out in the suburbs where their customers are, and that’s just kinda what we’re seeing, convenience, right?
Chris: Absolutely. Yeah, makes sense. Next is, “Filter-sensitive location.” So this is saying that in the old days they said it would make sense. Say you’re gonna sell furniture, right? And there’s a street somewhere in the city of Houston, or New York or Dallas that sells furniture or cars.
Chris: So you go open your shop there and so now when people are going in to shop furniture, you’re they type of business that they’re looking for, so you can get some walk-in traffic. It’s not necessarily good. It was never necessarily a good SEO practice, but it’s even less of a good SEO practice because we’re talking about some changes that are happening with Possum, especially if you’re in the same building. That’s somebody who’s looking for what you offer in your building, Google may only show one or two out of that building just because they’re concerned about it being the same business. So just be mindful of that. You don’t want to not necessarily cluster around where other businesses are that do exactly what you do.
Matt: Well this comes into it, and I think a lot of people need to understand their overall business strategy and that’s some of the direction that we’re starting to go as a company is, providing a little bit more sales direction, or a little bit more kind of overall strategy.
Chris: Right, fundamental strategy, yeah.
Matt: Because the internet is becoming such a big part of how you run your business and how you generate your leads.
Chris: Yeah, yeah. Absolutely. So the next one might not sound right, so this is, “Lack of policies.” So how is lack of policies gonna adjust my local SEO? How is that?
Matt: Well okay, this is a big stickler for me, but there’s Google guidelines out there and really people wanna know what you’re gonna do to their content, they wanna trust your site, and also Google and Facebook and all these companies out there, want you to have a policy to that. So you don’t seem really spammy or pheshing– phishing, phishing.
Chris: Like a phishing website, right?
Matt: Yeah, actually make it standard practice to put a privacy or a link on every page on your website. Google’s gonna do a check-the-box and it will help in addition to everything else that you do. Try not to do as much stuff wrong. The more stuff you can do not wrong, the better you’re gonna be because everybody’s all over the place and Google’s trying to standardize it.
Chris: Yeah, so that’s actually very true and more related on websites. This is actually talking about fundamental business strategy, right? So this is again, local SEO– “45 local SEO pitfalls that you wanna avoid.” We’re in the business plan section. This is a great article by Miriam Ellis.
Matt: So with this, too, okay? So we’re just about to hire two new people on Monday.
Matt: And the first thing that we’re gonna train them on is customer service.
Matt: That’s the fist thing and that’ the standard and it’s really really important based on people interacting with our company, how we answer the phones, how we need to follow up, how we need to get back to clients.
Chris: How we might interact on social media.
Chris: And that’s what she’s talking about here. So if you’ve got somebody who’s untrained on your staff and they see a negative review about your company and they may be were the one who are getting the bad review and you don’t have a policy in place. They could come back and say, “That customer was an idiot, and they didn’t know what they were doing.” And we’re a shoe shop and they were looking for a hat. Like all these nasty things can happen if you don’t have that policy in place.
Matt: Brand management is starting to become a big thing online.
Chris: Yup, absolutely.
Matt: So we’ll just leave it there.
Chris: So the next, right? “Local SEO pitfalls, “Unrealistic expectations.” Right, so don’t let another agency persuade you that it’s gonna be easy to dominate local or local organic results, right? Your competitors have been there a long time, they’ve been working hard at it. It’s not just gonna go easily just because of any one company approaching any one strategy. By the way, anything that they would do that would be aggressive enough to have that possibility could also be aggressive enough to get flagged.
Matt: So I’ll just– two quick stores because I know that this podcast is gonna go long, but I have seen data on the back end when people buy likes or buy links, and what it looks like to Google. Like the algorithm catches it, but like–
Chris: It’s obvious.
Matt: It’s super obvious, like the direction everything is going. So that’s one and then I think the second thing is: again, like a lot of these things are coming up almost daily when we’re talking to clients, but if you’re launching a new business, you want to launch SEO at the same time as PPC.
Matt: PPC is gonna give you the short-term.
Chris: The instant gains, yeah.
Matt: The instant gains and then SEO is gonna start working itself. Google kinda puts you in a sandbox. I don’t know if there’s a real rule out there, but I’ve kinda seen 60-90 days, a little more like 90 days.
Chris: Right, right.
Matt: Before they let it go.
Chris: Depending on the competitiveness, of course.
Matt: Because people are doing some nefarious things online, so yeah.
Chris: Right, absolutely. So the next is, “Lack of demand.” So this is just like, make sure that the business that you’re opening has a demand. They were like, if a vegan restaurant– if you wanna open a vegan restaurant and less than 1% of the local population is interested in one, then maybe you should go somewhere else to open your vegan restaurant.
Matt: Or like an online bookstore.
Chris: Yeah. Go somewhere else to open an online bookstore. We have actually had phone calls that are like, “Look, I want to build something that’s similar to Amazon, but incorporates Facebook.” And I’m like, “Okay, so what’s your budget?” “I got $5,000.” Okay. That’s not gonna go anywhere.
Matt: Well, and we try to steer people with their ideas in the right direction because there is a lot of validity to what they’re saying and there’s riches in the niches, okay? So they’re absolutely that and if you find that with the right strategy, we can get you there. We sometimes look at campaigns and we just try to keep you on the road and make sure you’re headed in the right direction, and there is a lot of winds out there and people do see some real opportunity, and some of those windows are starting to close but a lot of them are still out there.
Chris: Yeah. I like that, riches in the niches.
Chris: That’s good. Alright so next, this is number 9. This is, “45 local SEO Pitfalls that you should avoid. This one is, “Lack of clarity.” So I thought this was interesting, right? So what she wrote was, “The local business owner must first research their own geo-industry,” and not rely on the marketing team or somebody else to come up like, “What is the general messaging?” So we do often come up with that messaging because we have to, clients come over to us and don’t have it. What I’m gonna say is, in that messaging, be careful if you’re a business owner of talking about what you do and not what you should be selling, right? So I’m gonna give a good example, we’ve got a customer over in California, they will finance and lease heavy equipment. So what they really are providing to their customers is not cash, I mean that’s what they actually give them, it’s business growth opportunity, right? So what is the real take-away? I wanna grown my business, I need another backhoe. Boom, these guys can help me do it.
Matt: So I think that that plays into talking not from your perspective–
Chris: But the customer, yeah.
Matt: But the customer’s perspective. You gotta put yourself in their shoes and go: what are they looking at? What are they seeing? Right? And then also with CTAs. I think CTAs are huge, and there’s been a lot of debate here and I’m testing out a bunch of different things here, but really just go by yourself, look at your website and think of a customer that’s going to buy it. Now are you talking about who you are to the world, or are you talking in terms of them?
Matt: And I think that that’s something that’s being changed but that is something that a lot of people out there are still doing. So talk in terms of the customer.
Chris: Excellent. Alright, so that was the section about the business plan, again this is, “45 local SEO pitfalls you should avoid.” This is gonna talk about SEO. Some of these are gonna feel like duplicates, but it’s– okay, now I’ve decided the name of my business and I gotta be making decisions like my URL, right? What is my URL gonna be? So just like business name, make sure that it’s not restricting you, and this is why we though she might’ve been from Houston, ‘cause she’s like Sugar Land muffler and then mentions Dallas and Houston. So again, if you want– if your muffler sales are gonna come from Houston proper, then be careful about naming– using the domain name of Sugar Land muffler because the reality is that that’s gonna limit you. Somebody in Houston is like, “Oh, they only service Sugar Land.” So let’s make sure that we don’t get stuck with that.
Matt: Well, also on the flip side, we do have some smaller clients in some specific areas and really I’ve seen a lot of conversions when–
Chris: Are you about to talk about riches and the niches?
Matt: Well, I wanna know how much time we have left because we got a lot of questions and there’s definitely a lot to talk about. So I’m just kinda curious where we at ‘cause we’re at kind of a threshold cutoff here, and–
Chris: Right. Actually no, you probably should stop here.
Chris: Yeah, no. That’s actually a good stopping point. So we got through 9 of the, “45 local SEO pitfalls that you should avoid.” So yeah.
Matt: So tune in next week, same time, same place, bat symbol.
Chris: Yeah, yeah. Same time time, same bat time, same bat channel. Yeah. So the next one is gonna be talking about the website and what you should do for that.
Chris: Alright, let me get my device fired up, this is a Microsoft device. Let’s see if it comes up quickly of it takes a while. Gotta remember my code and so that really kinda wraps up our podcast, yeah?
Matt: So you’re a Microsoft guy?
Chris: Some times.
Matt: Okay, okay. Okay.
Chris: So usually in the podcast I’m an Apple guy ‘cause I have an iPad that normally works. I don’t know why it didn’t get this content right over.
Matt: Okay, just curious, you know?
Matt: My mom worked for Microsoft 25 years, so…
Chris: Then I had an Android device.
Matt: Whoa, so there’s not much brand loyalty.
Matt: No? Okay, okay.
Chris: Not really. So look, if you liked this podcast we’re gonna ask you to do something. Go ahead and share this podcast with 3 people, right? You can do that right now, we really appreciate that. If you’re looking to grow your business with the largest simplest marketing tool on the planet… Do you…? The internet, it’s the internet.
Matt: Amazon. Amazon then Google, guys. I bet you didn’t know that.
Chris: In terms of search engines, okay. Okay, so I’m a little concerned about the direction we’re going. We’ve recently in this podcast admitted that we are not Amazon experts and we are saying that you should first go to Amazon. You can call eWebResults for increased revenue in your business, our phone number is 713-592-6724. We have a program called Instant Leads Guaranteed.
Matt: Leads leads leads…
Chris: Guaranteed teed teed teed…
Matt: Teed teed teed…
Chris: We’re gonna get it going off in different directions.
Matt: Oh sorry.
Chris: Yeah. So–
Matt: Focus leads.
Chris: Yeah. To get that started, just go to our website, eWebResults.com, click the green button, fill out the form, we’ll talk to you about Instant Leads. By the way, how does just the sound of Instant Leads Guaranteed, how does that make you feel? It kind feels good, right? I would like some Instant Leads Guaranteed, who wouldn’t? If you’re in Houston and you’re doing any business networking, then you absolutely need to get to UPSocialNetwork.com and join us at the next event. We have a phenomenal time at the event, you can get an interview for your business, you get content for your business, you get to network with the people in the room. Typically the 10-30 people who are in the room actually get more than 1,000 to 3,000 views of that stream. Go check out UP Social Network.
Matt: It’s the next generation of marketing, yeah, networking.
Chris: Networking, absolutely. Alright, so we were filmed live here at 5999, West 34th Street, Suite 106, Houston, Texas, 77092. If you would like a transcript, video or audio of this podcast, you can get that at our website eWebResults.com. Do you have anything before we wrap up?
Matt: I mean I think we should put it out in Spanish. I do, I do.
Chris: Sí, yo quiero hablar Español.
Matt: I do, I think we should. I think we really should. I’ve seen a lot of traffic with PPC in Spanish.
Chris: Do you realize how much prep time it’s gonna be for me–
Matt: And Mandarin.
Chris: Alright, alright. Paging Dr. eWeb, he needs to get back to PPC surgery. Hey, you guys have made us the most popular internet marketing podcast on iTunes. We really appreciate you. Punch in the face to Paul, Manny and Charles, good to see you. We appreciate you guys tuning in. Until the next podcast, my name is Chris Burres.
Matt: Matt Bertram.
Chris: Bye bye for now.
Tip from SEO Podcast 385 – Your office location will have a big impact on your Local SEO. Choose wisely.