This topic contains 17 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by Adam Steele Adam Steele 5 years, 4 months ago.

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    Mike Blumenthal

    Google has one rule to rule them all: any activity that is expressly intended to manipulate search results is forbidden.

    So the answer is that if they are real locations that provide real customer service then they are acceptable regardless if whether they are a franchise or a branch location.

    I do have a question for you. What site side attribute do you think precipitated the site drop at Google? How long have you have had the site? What is the site and what is the search phrases that you were competing on?


    Will Scott


    What Mike said. Even if it’s Chuck in a truck from his home address, it would be acceptable. To reiterate, if it’s a real location with customer service then it passes the sniff test. And, if it’s not it may be a legitimate SAB and the number you use can come from any telco, as long as it’s consistent across the ecosystem.


    Nate Buckley

    Thanks for covering my question. I’ll ensure these listings are legit.

    Mike, I take on board your point about the authority site. After I monetize a few more local listings, I’ll spend time developing this. In answer to your question, I’ve followed various defunct SEO trends including the use of article directories and 2.0’s.

    From here on out I’ll use the ‘belly-belly’ approach to link building.


    Mike Blumenthal

    Trying to “force” your ranking by following the crowd of SEO “tactics” is a good way to get in trouble with Google. Their goal is to become more human like in their recommendations and to recommend places that are relevant and popular in the real world.

    As the popular SEO techniques take off Google monitors them and sooner or later puts in places restrictions on their use.

    So your recognition of the belly-belly approach as the way to go is good. But they are hard to get which is why concentrating their impact on one site becomes so important. If you get 3 links to a microsite they are essentially limited in their value to that site. If you cross link to your main site then you get only 1 link to your main site and you run the risk of violating Google’s guidelines… 3 links to your main site would, based on your internal linking structure, would benefit all of the other location and service pages.

    Traditional marketing techniques revisited for online also work very well..

    Here is the order that usually pursue things
    Site architecture, content and title tags
    Basic citation building at primary list suppliers, top 20 IYPs and directories and vertical directories
    On going citation and link building with local, relevant and industry related sites.
    Email collection and client follow up plan
    Review management
    Once those are in place I develop a social marketing plan that focuses on the needs of the local market.


    Nate Buckley

    Thanks for the thorough advice Mike.

    I’ll begin implementing these recommendations over coming the week.

    Adam Steele
    Adam Steele

    Hey Nate – I would have to agree with the rest, your original plan is a bit shortsighted, and will probably be more trouble than it will be worth in the end. No doubt, as you’ve noticed, it is common. I hear and see it on a daily basis, without fail. From what I have heard so far, if I were you, I would lean towards local landing pages. Lots of great content available on how to properly put these together. If done right, there is absolutely no need to setup fake listings all over the place.

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