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Ever Increasing Monetization Of Google Local And The Experts That Love Google

local search local seo seo experts

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#1 earlpearl

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 11:20 AM

Here is a little rant about the ever changing nature of Local SEO, the ever changing environment wherein google is endlessly monetizing the results and endlessly suggesting to smb's that they advertise, and how the folks that market themselves as Local EXPERTS and pick up small business clients just endlessly praise google no matter what it does or how:

 

If you have a local business you should CLAIM your record so that it you get at least a modicum of control on how that business shows in Google search results, let alone increasing the opportunity that you can show high in the 3 PAC (little map insert) in google search, and get your website to show better in organic results.

 

(Of course if you work in the hotel vertical, ignore everything said above and below as the virtually only thing that counts is having your hotel aligned with On Line Travel Agents (OTA's)--google's partners in booking reservations as a middle man and skimming $$$ off of your receipts.)   (If you have a home services business in the Northern California region (ie a plumber or a builder or home contractor--ALSO ignore as there is NO Google Local Visibility in google search--Just Ads).

 

But if you are in other verticals it currently makes sense to Claim a listing in Google My Business.

 

Except that once you claim that listing, Google will endlessly relentlessly but in a subtle manner encourage you to advertise at adwords or in adwords express (adwords for idiots).

 

If you do Claim your listing you will get reports from Google My Business:   The reasonably long term standard report has looked like the following:

former Google My Business Page.png

 

The newest version looks like the following:

New Google My Business Page.gif

 

The new version adds a call to action to advertise.

 

Now with this change some local SEO experts that provide services to small businesses had this to say:

local search commentators.png

 

That endless google love makes me sick.  Meanwhile they endlessly convert search into an ever more Paid Search Engine Experience, my wallet feels the endless hand of google extracting $$$ from our efforts....and the freaking "local Search Experts" praise google no matter what they do.

 

Oi Oi Oi. :dazed: :dazed: :emo_gavel:


Edited by earlpearl, 05 May 2017 - 11:23 AM.


#2 iamlost

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 11:40 AM

A major problem with the Local SEO business market is exactly that of the SEO business market: self proclaimed experts who are actually simple scammers.

Of the minority (in both the broader and the specialised fields) who actually have a clue aka actual knowledge and experience most/all of it is Google-centric. And with Google, as you mention, it is always easier and quicker to go ppc; often customer expectations require interim ppc until longer term organic takes root.

Of the minority of the minority (again in both the broader and narrower SEO fields) who (1) acknowledge a web outside G and (2) have the wherewithal to market successfully there you hear very little because (1) their signal is lost in the G-noise and (2) they are either marketing for themselves or so busy/expensive most webdevs die of shock and envy.

#3 earlpearl

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 12:14 PM

A major problem with the Local SEO business market is exactly that of the SEO business market: self proclaimed experts who are actually simple scammers.

Of the minority (in both the broader and the specialised fields) who actually have a clue aka actual knowledge and experience most/all of it is Google-centric. And with Google, as you mention, it is always easier and quicker to go ppc; often customer expectations require interim ppc until longer term organic takes root.

Of the minority of the minority (again in both the broader and narrower SEO fields) who (1) acknowledge a web outside G and (2) have the wherewithal to market successfully there you hear very little because (1) their signal is lost in the G-noise and (2) they are either marketing for themselves or so busy/expensive most webdevs die of shock and envy.

 

They are all google centric, but more critically they all LOVE Google and praise any action by google.  Endless google love.

 

I've been doing this for a while.  One "funny" episode from years ago.  I saw a competitor driving results that were spammy and twisted.  Hand researched it over months, ultimately sent Matt Cutts a note describing what was going on and suggested if they didn't tackle it, I was going to start replicating it or broadcasting it to the outside market.   He put me in direct touch with the spam team.   This was years ago.

 

The spam team was impressed with the hand research and acknowledged what was going on was producing spammy results.  I was really "jacked" about this situation as it was "killing" one of our smb's.  They were scarfing up visibility and traffic and we were getting killed.  I kept contacting the spam team to effect a penalty on these actions.

 

Those "guys"   sent me a signal.  They ERASED our visibility on several of our smbs.   WHOA!!!!!    Quite a signal.  I informed them our sites had lost visibility....and I SHUT MY YAP.   They returned our visibility.  Ultimately they "penalized" the "scoundrel" and for our smb that was effected we saw immediate better results.

 

In a different case we purchased a local business in one of our smb categories.  It was doing terribly.  It was for sale at an extraordinarily low price.   I had looked at its web presence and there was something wrong with it.  Its visibility was miserable.   After purchasing we kept the address and phone number but had a new website.  New contacts.  New connection to google through its local connection (now called Google My Business).

 

Regardless we inherited the miserable visibility.  I went through every process imaginable to get it corrected.  Nothing worked. This took months. Google local "customer service" (not real direct customer service) couldn't address the issue.   I kept contacting inside google local to try and get a higher up to address the issue and finally someone did.  It took this person about 45 minutes to find the "issue" and address it.   

 

BINGO.  our visibility improved drastically.   We were hit/had inherited a "super secret" google penalty.  I'm 99% sure what occurred.  It was a mistake in the first place but internal google messed it up.  The penalty was not correctable in any kind of normal way and was out of the reach of normal processes.

 

Think about it.  Google's penalty had the make or break power over that smb.  How many times has that been applied and how often is it done incorrectly???   Who knows.  But in that case Google's power rivaled that of Putin...and we know that Putin is OH SO POWERFUL.  ;)

 

AND YES for this smb type google visibility is vital.  It is that way in every region for this smb type and similar types.   EVER SINCE we work on Word OF Mouth and Referrals as best we can.  It works.  It takes time.  We do it in a myriad of ways including SM and non web social actions.  It reduces dependence on google.   In every smb type we try and get high visibility in search and work on WOM and referrals in every case.

 

Now in most cases we do and have spent on google PPC.  It sits atop everything.  It is a way to get visibility.  We generally have strong local/regional visibility in organic and Maps/Pac results...but not always and it gets regularly tougher and less visible as PPC dominates.   PPC COMPLETELY Dominates in Mobile.  Completely.  Our mobile ppc clicks have skyrocketed as has the CTR.  Its simply soaring.  As is the case with all types of businesses, especially local.

 

Our "struggle" these days is to moderate ppc spend but keep it strong where we are less visible in organic and maps/pac search.   MEANWHILE keep pounding away at WOM and other methods of marketing.

 

On the EXPERT Side...They simply won't condemn google for any action at any point.  They all love google.  They praise it endlessly.  They occasionally will bring up issues where google local gets really weak or shows flaws....but then they jump back to endlessly googlizing to the masses.

 

Makes me sick.

 

Rant OVER!!!!!!



#4 EGOL

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 01:11 PM

:-)

 

Seeing same stuff in the organic SERPs. 

 

Ads at the top.  Shopping at the top and or on the side.  Numerous other SERP features to push the organic listings down or split them up - with the objective of diverting the searcher to the ads at the top of another SERP.

 

Honestly, this is simply Google becoming a better webmaster.   Not the best user experience, but a better webmaster strategy if they are trying to make money.   Managers there better be growing revenue and profits to please shareholders.



#5 earlpearl

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 02:06 PM


 

Honestly, this is simply Google becoming a better webmaster.   Not the best user experience, but a better webmaster strategy if they are trying to make money.   Managers there better be growing revenue and profits to please shareholders.

ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.  Ughhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

 

that is what the google lovers would say.  ;)



#6 iamlost

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 02:21 PM

:)

 

I love a good   :spitoutdrink: rant.

 

And I love stirring (oe seeing one stirred) one up to even greater heights... :applause: EGOL

 

Woo HOO!!!



#7 iamlost

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Posted 05 May 2017 - 02:53 PM

I know that Google Search is actually Google's marketing department and that Google the company is an advertising agency cum network...

And that because the engineers are running the ship they have serious algorithms thumping away in the bowels doing heaven knows what with the drive gear and steering...

One needs only to consider how 'well' robot cars are doing - and how not - to see that when scale hits complexity hits "whee! look no hands!" there are bugs upon features and edge cases up the yingyang. Given the mess, especially the past year and increasing this past 6-months, that a great many personal queries I make deliver for results I truly wonder if G has lost control, if the search genie is out of the bottle and running amuck...

I am upset by a perceived worsening of search quality - for those of you more upset by an increasing play to pay and in-house promotion... you should take a good close look at Baidu and other east and south Asian SEs. Google is a rank amateur although they do seem to be taking a few lessons and easing their way into a similar mould... sort of like slooowly upping the temperature of a pot full of unsuspecting wallowers...

Larry and Sergey and Google have become that they feared back when... or else they knew full well and it was all one big con for a better IPO and greater personal control...

I do know that when one of those edge cases cuts one off at the knees (as per your recollection and my negSEO one some time back) unless one has enough clout or can generate sufficient bad press one is sol.
Welcome to the Information Age, where information is either power or commodified content depending on how one leverages it; or not.

 

 

 



#8 earlpearl

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Posted 08 May 2017 - 12:29 PM

I know that Google Search is actually Google's marketing department and that Google the company is an advertising agency cum network...

And that because the engineers are running the ship they have serious algorithms thumping away in the bowels doing heaven knows what with the drive gear and steering...


 

<rant on>I took a call from one of the google adwords experts for one of our smb's last week.   We are at a point where we are looking to cut costs.  I've told them that.  Meanwhile they are giving us guides and instructions on how to increase clicks and costs.   Will it lead to more sales???   That is our bottom line.

 

Here is the deal.  This smb shows up in search and other sources.  Mostly it gets leads.  People fill out forms or they call or drop in.  Leads are not revenues for this business.  Sales are.

 

It converts less than 1/2 its leads.  How many?  I guess that is for us to know.  We do better and worse with coversions over time.  We've been running this smb and some like it for 30 years.  Its not like we are 100% positive on how to drive conversions ever higher.  If we don't know google doesn't know.

 

On top of that we are curently monitoring phone calls off of adwords.  Cripes.  Not all clicks are about sales.  Makes me vaguely ill. 

 

So google wants us to tell them more about us so they can "help us more".  I'm sorry Google, if you want to help us more give us more INFORMATION.  Give us organic keyword back.  Give us more robust analysis off of analytics and adwords.  You have it.  You just don't dole it out.  You know much more about click behavior.  We know more about sales in this little niche. 

 

Unless google gives us more information we won't give them more information.  They already know too much.  Every so often unbeknownst to us they convert adwords in a way that simply costs more.  They don't tell us beforehand.  

 

I know they won't give us more info.  So we'll just take a little of their "help" and scrap away to keep cutting out the extraneous crap.  <rant over>





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