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Darren Shaw - Mozcon 2019 - From Zero to Local Ranking Hero

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Darren Shaw's Mozcon 2019 talk where he walks through a case study in local seo taking a business from zero online presence to ranking well in the local search results.

From zero web presence to ranking hyper-locally, Darren will take us along on the 8-month-long journey of a business growing its digital footprint and analyzing what worked (and didn’t) along the way. How well will they rank from a GMB listing alone? What about when citations were added, and later indexed? Did having a keyword in the business name help or harm, and what changes when they earn a few good links? Buckle up for this wild ride as we discover exactly what impact different strategies have on local rankings.

Published in: Marketing
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Darren Shaw - Mozcon 2019 - From Zero to Local Ranking Hero

  1. 1. GET YOUR SLIDES HERE sprk.it/mozcon2019
  2. 2. The Case Study
  3. 3. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Nov 9, 2018
  4. 4. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Nov 9, 2018
  5. 5. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ NONE of the 113 submissions were a clean slate Dec 9, 2018
  6. 6. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ FC Developments! Dec 15, 2018
  7. 7. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Did some information gathering Dec 20, 2018
  8. 8. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Did some keyword “research” Dec 20, 2018
  9. 9. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Base terms plus modifiers Dec 20, 2018
  10. 10. GMB Setup
  11. 11. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Created the GMB listing Dec 20, 2018
  12. 12. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ “Optimized” the GMB listing The categories are really the only thing to optimize Dec 20, 2018
  13. 13. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ But also, fill out every field and regularly use all features for engagement signals and conversions
  14. 14. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Is a GMB website good enough to rank? Dec 20, 2018
  15. 15. Things I like about the GMB site: It looks decent enough #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  16. 16. Things I like about the GMB site: Simple and easy for a business to use #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  17. 17. Things I like about the GMB site: Feed content directly into the Knowledge Graph? Disclaimer: This is pure speculation #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  18. 18. Things I like about the GMB site: Posts and reviews are automatically added to the page Fresh content! #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  19. 19. HOT TIP!(maybe?) Even if you have a website, you might still want to create and add content to the website in GMB #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  20. 20. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ I didn’t like the URL https://fc-developments-custom-home-builder.business.site Jan 10, 2019
  21. 21. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ So I bought a domain right in GMB Jan 10, 2019
  22. 22. Rank Tracking
  23. 23. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Welp, that was easy. Ranking #1! Jan 11, 2019
  24. 24. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Welp, that was easy. Ranking #1! Jan 11, 2019 But, long tail keyword And I live only a few blocks away
  25. 25. To get a better sense of rankings, track from different locations around the city #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  26. 26. Citation Building
  27. 27. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ I had our citation team build 100 citations Jan 15, 2019
  28. 28. HOT TIP! Use a different phone number for citation building to avoid all the annoying sales calls from crap directories #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  29. 29. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Um… what about NAP consistency?
  30. 30. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Just add it as an additional # in GMB
  31. 31. 18 calls
  32. 32. All from sales people
  33. 33. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ One month later, did the citations impact rankings? Feb 11, 2019
  34. 34. More Content
  35. 35. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Added a bit more content to the site Mar 6, 2019
  36. 36. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ The next day, the first ORGANIC rankings appeared Feb 11, 2019 Added extra content
  37. 37. Citation Indexing
  38. 38. Are the citations providing any benefit if the pages aren’t indexed in Google? #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  39. 39. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Added links to all the citation URLs to the GMB website Mar 8, 2019
  40. 40. Greenlane Script https://www.greenlanemarketing.com/tools/google-indexation-tester/
  41. 41. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ March 12th - No real change to indexation And results differ at different run times. Hmm.
  42. 42. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ March 12th - No real change to indexation And results differ at different run times. Hmm.
  43. 43. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Hmm… This GMB site has zero authority to pass to the citations…
  44. 44. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  45. 45. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ So I tried this on March 12th
  46. 46. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ This also did nothing but Matthew Woodward got some sweet affiliate $bux
  47. 47. Ok, let’s try to index from a higher authority domain
  48. 48. Submitted the page for indexing through Search Console #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  49. 49. BOOM! Indexation rate DOUBLED the next day #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  50. 50. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Rankings seemed to respond the next day too!
  51. 51. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ And rankings have been on the rise since (though, reviews and links are now also contributing) Added the whitespark.ca indexation page
  52. 52. Service Area Test
  53. 53. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Added service areas for each postcode I’m tracking Feb 19, 2019
  54. 54. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Maybe some impact? Could be other factors Added the service areas
  55. 55. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ To be sure, I took them out on April 5 Apr 5, 2019
  56. 56. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Rankings were not impacted by removal Removed the service areas
  57. 57. Google Posts
  58. 58. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Started pumping out Google Posts daily Feb 24, 2019
  59. 59. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Rankings maybe responded a bit? Started adding posts daily
  60. 60. Reviews
  61. 61. Mar 14, 2019 #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  62. 62. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Got our first review! Mar 14, 2019
  63. 63. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Two more the next day! Mar 15, 2019
  64. 64. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ How did the reviews impact rankings? Got 3 reviews Nice
  65. 65. Links
  66. 66. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Have you seen this? https://twitter.com/GrindstoneSEO/status/1087836159969914880
  67. 67. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ (H)igh (A)uthority (D)omain (R)elavant
  68. 68. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Branded or URL anchors only
  69. 69. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ LINKS!
  70. 70. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ LINKS! Mar 29, 2019
  71. 71. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ LINKS! Apr 1, 2019
  72. 72. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ LINKS! Apr 1, 2019
  73. 73. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ LINKS! Apr 1, 2019
  74. 74. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ How did the links impact rankings? First link 3 more WOW!
  75. 75. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  76. 76. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ No impact? 1 11 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 12 new links from industry and city specific sites
  77. 77. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ SAD TROMBONE Still nothing as of July 5th
  78. 78. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Theory: the law of diminishing returns Links Rankings Reached parity with competition?
  79. 79. We don’t need more links. To progress further, we need to improve in other areas. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  80. 80. New Website
  81. 81. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  82. 82. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Re-indexed via Search Console
  83. 83. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_ Google: Launched new site
  84. 84. Takeaways
  85. 85. Don't just track local rankings from the city centre. Track from multiple zip codes around the city. 01 #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  86. 86. 02To get the full value from your citations, ensure they're indexed. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  87. 87. The service area section in GMB will not help you rank in those areas.03 #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  88. 88. 04Invest in a Google review strategy. They have an impact. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  89. 89. Whoa. Those first few links, hey? 05 #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  90. 90. 06Any individual strategy will eventually hit a point of diminishing returns. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  91. 91. A full website is better than a GMB single-pager. OBVS.07 #mozcon @DarrenShaw_
  92. 92. 08It’s not one specific activity, it’s the aggregate of all activities that will move the needle. #mozcon @DarrenShaw_

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