XDental

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Hey everyone,

Please forgive me if I’m asking something with a really obvious answer – we’re hoping somebody can give us some insight.

We manage the websites and GBPs of a number of clients (all of them dentists in the UK), and we also create and post GBP posts for them. Since late March / April, we’ve seen a steady and significant decline in the volume of local post search views across all clients (15+). Prior to March / April, performance had been stable.

We observed this initially in Whatagraph, a data visualisation platform that’s pulling the local post search views directly from Google via API (I’m not sure exactly which API). Whatgraph seem pretty confident that nothing has changed on their side in the last few months, so we’re wondering if there’s anything that might have changed with Google in the last 3-4 months that may be causing this.

Looking in the post insights in the GBP Manager, we’re seeing that views were considerably higher (10x) looking back at posts from Feb and Jan (screenshots attached of recent post, 23 June, vs post from February).

Obviously GBP post views are not the primary metric we’re concerned about, but given that the trend has persisted consistently for 3+ months now, we’d love to get to the bottom of what might be causing it.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!

Cheers

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keyserholiday

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There can be several things.
1. Posts are much lower on the KP. When did the products start to show up on the KP?
2. It can be a seasonality thing. Looks like call volume is down in all of the screenshots.
3. Losing branded searches. The posts only get triggered when a branded search is performed.
 

XDental

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There can be several things.
1. Posts are much lower on the KP. When did the products start to show up on the KP?
2. It can be a seasonality thing. Looks like call volume is down in all of the screenshots.
3. Losing branded searches. The posts only get triggered when a branded search is performed.
Thank you! Some interesting thoughts, but I'm not convinced this quite explains it.

1. We've had products in the KP the entire time we've been managing our clients' GBPs – no change there from our end (and the posts are also often viewed from non-brand searches anyway).

2. Call volume is not down – it's been fluctuating, with June, and especially May, being good months (higher than April in a lot of cases). The call volumes are also not showing consistent trends across our clients, with considerably more variability, whereas the post views are steadily and consistently trending down in the same way across various client accounts.

3. We're managing 15+ clients, so it would seem odd that all of them would simultaneously start losing branded search. Branded search also plays a smaller role for some of our clients than others, yet the post view trajectory is the same for all of them regardless.

Any other ideas?
 
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dgrunited

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Hey everyone,

Please forgive me if I’m asking something with a really obvious answer – we’re hoping somebody can give us some insight.

We manage the websites and GBPs of a number of clients (all of them dentists in the UK), and we also create and post GBP posts for them. Since late March / April, we’ve seen a steady and significant decline in the volume of local post search views across all clients (15+). Prior to March / April, performance had been stable.

We observed this initially in Whatagraph, a data visualisation platform that’s pulling the local post search views directly from Google via API (I’m not sure exactly which API). Whatgraph seem pretty confident that nothing has changed on their side in the last few months, so we’re wondering if there’s anything that might have changed with Google in the last 3-4 months that may be causing this.

Looking in the post insights in the GBP Manager, we’re seeing that views were considerably higher (10x) looking back at posts from Feb and Jan (screenshots attached of recent post, 23 June, vs post from February).

Obviously GBP post views are not the primary metric we’re concerned about, but given that the trend has persisted consistently for 3+ months now, we’d love to get to the bottom of what might be causing it.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated!

Cheers

Screen Shot 2022-07-07 at 16.53.39.jpg


Screen Shot 2022-07-07 at 16.54.01.jpg


Screenshot 2022-07-07 at 16.27.56.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_30_05.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_30_36.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_31_15.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_31_36.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_31_53.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_32_10.jpg


screenshot-live.whatagraph.com-2022.07.07-16_32_23.jpg

Many of your articles are spun using AI. Here's a blatant example: Allsopp Dental Practice - Google Search

Therefore, I'm not surprised that your readership is dropping.

BTW, if you are using AI generated articles on GBP, you are probably doing the same on your website too (I've not checked your website). Therefore, you are probably facing a double whammy from Google.
 

SaraGarrison

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I've noticed in recent months that the posts functionality is buggy in terms of the order in which they are displayed. We'll create a new post for clients, and even though the date is more recent, Google features an older post first. You have to click on the post reel to see the newly-created posts in the correct order.

Out of curiosity, when you go to the live listing, is the most recent post displayed first?
 

XDental

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Many of your articles are spun using AI. Here's a blatant example: Allsopp Dental Practice - Google Search

Therefore, I'm not surprised that your readership is dropping.

BTW, if you are using AI generated articles on GBP, you are probably doing the same on your website too (I've not checked your website). Therefore, you are probably facing a double whammy from Google.

Hi d, thanks for your feedback.

I appreciate you taking a stab at this. I'm not sure what gave you the impression that these are AI – I edited this post myself, and worked with the writer and designer who wrote and designed it. None of our posts – and none of the content on any of our websites – is created using AI of any kind.
 

seosemsocial

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Many of your articles are spun using AI. Here's a blatant example: Allsopp Dental Practice - Google Search

Therefore, I'm not surprised that your readership is dropping.

BTW, if you are using AI generated articles on GBP, you are probably doing the same on your website too (I've not checked your website). Therefore, you are probably facing a double whammy from Google.

How can you tell it's AI?
 

dgrunited

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Hi d, thanks for your feedback.

I appreciate you taking a stab at this. I'm not sure what gave you the impression that these are AI – I edited this post myself, and worked with the writer and designer who wrote and designed it. None of our posts – and none of the content on any of our websites – is created using AI of any kind.

Your writer is a "clever" bloke. He deliberately writes short articles so that AI detectors / plagiarism checkers will not have enough text to work on & produce a conclusive report. The problem with writing short articles is that these articles will not be able to add much value to the reader too. Therefore, Google will just ignore these short articles causing your readership to drop.

Here's another blatant example: Allsopp Dental Practice - Google Search I've given you 2 samples so far.

Experience has taught me that if I can find 1 dubiously generated article on a website, I can find many more on the same site.

Need I say more?
 

XDental

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Your writer is a "clever" bloke. He deliberately writes short articles so that AI detectors / plagiarism checkers will not have enough text to work on & produce a conclusive report. The problem with writing short articles is that these articles will not be able to add much value to the reader too. Therefore, Google will just ignore these short articles causing your readership to drop.

Here's another blatant example: Allsopp Dental Practice - Google Search I've given you 2 samples so far.

Experience has taught me that if I can find 1 dubiously generated article on a website, I can find many more on the same site.

Need I say more?

Hi d,

Thanks again for making an attempt here, I appreciate it.

I must reiterate that we haven't used any software of any kind – these are all 100% written and designed by humans. And like you pointed out, they are short and snappy, as is best practice for this type of content.

While we're not using any of the types of technology you allude to, something you might be touching on (albeit unintentionally) is the fact that we sometimes use the same template for multiple clients, meaning we might take the same post, change the branding on the design, and change the location and brand name keywords.

We're in an industry that is incredibly local – after all, nobody wants to travel more than a few miles to see a dentist – and none of our clients compete with each other (we have a non-compete geographical exclusion clause). So we've tried using the same content across different client accounts – though only for GBP posts, not actual site content (ie. only for local SEO efforts).

I'd be interested to know whether this sharing of content across client GBPs might be the culprit?
 
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dgrunited

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Hi d,

Thanks again for making an attempt here, I appreciate it.

I must reiterate that we haven't used any software of any kind – these are all 100% written and designed by humans. And like you pointed out, they are short and snappy, as is best practice for this type of content.

While we're not using any of the types of technology you allude to, something you might be touching on (albeit unintentionally) is the fact that we sometimes use the same template for multiple clients, meaning we might take the same post, change the branding on the design, and change the location and brand name keywords.

We're in an industry that is incredibly local – after all, nobody wants to travel more than a few miles to see a dentist – and none of our clients compete with each other (we have a non-compete geographical exclusion clause). So we've tried using the same content across different client accounts – though only for GBP posts, not actual site content (ie. only for local SEO efforts).

I'd be interested to know whether this sharing of content across client GBPs might be the culprit?

Well, you wanted an explanation for the decline in your readership. I've given you a possible reason with credible evidence.

Since none of us are privy to Google's algorithms, we will never know the real reason for the decline in your readership. We can only speculate based on our own experience.

The fact remains that this article of yours, Allsopp Dental Practice - Google Search was spun from:

Well, maybe they all copied you?

So you decide on how you want to fix your readership issue.
 

seosemsocial

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I can't. I used the word AI as a generic term to describe spun, plagiarised, scraped, synonym-changed & any other technology used to produce dubious articles.

Yeah that's the thing. Many sites copy other website content, rewrite just a tad, and publish. Some simply scrape word for word and publish. The interesting thing regarding local sites, is many that have done this, rank very well, even using dup content.

Over the years I've had a few clients that were being groomed by competitor SEO companies say to me, AI was used, when it clearly wasn't. So when someone says this, I like to see what they base that judgement off of.
So far, no one has been able to say: here's the tool I used or, this clearly shows it's AI generated.

The fact of the matter is, even if the content WAS AI generated (whatever that means) Google still ranks it.
 

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