Last Updated on January 1, 2020
Every week we bring you a brief 15 minute video and the links of the best articles in Local Search. OK. It’s not always 15 minutes but we are never off by more than 10 minutes or so.
Important Links from Last Week in Local – Dystopia in Local Search, Technical SEO for Local Websites, Answering FAQs and More!
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Amazon’s Next-Day Delivery System Has Brought Chaos And Carnage To America’s Streets — But The World’s Biggest Retailer Has A System To Escape The Blame
Mike: Under this new system, Amazon closely monitors drivers through its routing software having them deliver up to 250 packages. The entrepreneurs running these delivery companies assume the financial risk of running a delivery business. And because the drivers are employed by independent companies, Amazon is able to assert it had no legal liability for their working conditions — or for any mayhem employees wrought as they raced to hit delivery targets requiring more than 99% of packages to arrive by their promised delivery date.
Mike: What you get when you give location permission – Dystopia
If you don’t want to read the article in Texas, Chick-fil-A’s customers predictably visit Whataburger on Sundays more than any other alternative. IHOP was a go-to for many in the Midwestern states, including Oklahoma. But for most states, Cracker Barrel is the most popular alternative for customers who need their Sunday chicken fix.
Mike: If you want to regularly document changes to a website, whether originating in the agency or by the client, this articles provides a great way to track those changes.
Mike: Lead gen rehab spam has made its way to England, preying on those least able to defend themselves.
Mike: The power of the front page of Google is augmented with their Discover feed and the idea that local businesses might be highlighted there is intriguing.
Mike: The obvious was highlighted, it’s either the top three organic spots or not at all. More interesting were some of the other correlations. For example title tags that contain a question have a 14.1% higher CTR vs. pages that don’t have a question in their title.
Mike: Some great ideas on using reviews to understand what you should write about and what you should say.
Beyond conventional SEO: Unravelling the mystery of the organic product carousel – Search Engine Land
Mike: Google is offering a free product feeds through Google’s Merchant Center and Manufacturer Center and the article provides specific details on how to take advantage of this new feature.
Mike: Under many circumstances, hiding your address if you are a Service Area Business and coming into compliance with Google’s guidelines does not impact your ranking.
Review counts matter more to local business revenue than star ratings, according to study – Search Engine Land
Mary: “Businesses claiming their listings on multiple sites earn 58% more revenue Businesses that respond to reviews average 35% more revenue Businesses with ratings of 3.5 to 4.5 stars earn more than those with higher and lower ratings Businesses with more reviews (than the average) across sites generate 54% more revenue.” from @gsterling
Mary: @Whitespark explains “What technical SEO items are important for local businesses? Read part one of A Beginner’s Guide to Technical SEO For Local Businesses to learn about keyword targeting and on-page optimizations.”
Mary: Google verification for LSA’s not up to standards. In my area the LSA’s are showing duplicate listings, letting franchises have more then one listing in the…
Carrie: Mike wrote this as a response to a question posed by another online publication – they rejected his answer – I think for length – so he published it at GatherUp. I like the idea of having a cohesive “story” for your brand. What adjectives do you want people to use when they think of your business? Then understand that it’s not JUST what YOU say that creates that story – reviews and reputation play a big role.
Carrie: GREAT post by Brandon Schmidt on the LocalU Blog about repurposing FAQ content in 6 different ways. This is a huge opportunity that I think a lot of websites miss out on. I’d love to add that FAQs can be everywhere on your site – not just one page of stuff – so take advantage. Put questions most related to that product/service on that product service page!
Carrie: I’ve been thinking about this a lot. I think there are a lot of sites out there that are blogging just because they think they need to “add more content.” They keep adding new but do little to make sure the “old” is still accurate and relevant. I think spending more time converting “old” content to updated (even possibly evergreen) content might be time better spend to achieve higher rankings/sales/leads. Stop ignoring old content on your sites!
Carrie: Miriam Ellis writes at the Moz Blog about using kindness to encourage loyalty and brand mentions in the press. I think it’s an awesome tactic, but it seems to be best when it’s 100% organic – it’s not something you can “cultivate” other than just being the best at what you do every single day.
Carrie: Sparktoro surveyed 1500+ online marketers to ask them what they thought were the best and worst thought of ranking factors in 2019. Interesting data – some of these things I don’t consider ranking factors at all – but maybe? I know Google has said they aren’t, but there’s not a lot of incentive for them to confirm some of this. Interestingly a majority of those surveyed said the factors vary depending on the query and type of query. Ie – national informational search vs. local service search.
Also content has beaten out links as the most important factor – that hasn’t happened in a while (ever?). Caution – this does not mean the VOLUME of content, IMO – it means the quality of content and strength of optimization.
Carrie: I don’t see these yet – Mike is hooked into some super-special Google server. Google is really testing a lot of CTAs and integrating related searches into results.
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