Rich Owings

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It used to be that home page text made a big impact on map pack rankings. Is anyone seeing evidence that this has changed? I have a plumber client who had a water filter section on his home page, but wasn't ranking for terms like "water filter installer." We added "install" and "installation" to his home page and he went to #1 overnight. But he no longer ranks for those terms. He seems to have taken a hit in the Bedlam update in general.
 
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Out of curiosity - is the listing linking directly to his home page, or to a different landing page? That could theoretically make a difference to how important the home page is.
 
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A couple of things to consider...

1) Did his general/organic rankings for those keywords take a hit as well? If so, whatever caused the organic rankings to drop could be affecting local rankings.

2) How far from the center of the targeted city is your client? My understanding is the recent update made proximity an even stronger ranking factor, so if your client is further from the center of the city than competitors, that could explain it.
 

pony

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Out of curiosity - is the listing linking directly to his home page, or to a different landing page? That could theoretically make a difference to how important the home page is.

This is a good clarification. In Google's eyes (particularly for larger sites) it's not so much the content that's on the homepage as it is the content that's on the page the GMB listing is pointing to.

Of course on smaller sites (just a handful of pages) the content on the homepage is going to have a larger effect on local rankings than for a site that has hundreds of thousands of pages.
 

Yan Gilbert

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If you think it is a Bedlam hit, I think its because Bedlam now allows the algo to better understand not only specific words on a page, but the general idea of the page (or even groups of pages). Have not tested specifically for this, but I'm thinking more content would be needed, either for example a new content section (possibly under an H2) on the homepage, or a few more related and interlinked articles on the site targeting that keyword and related terms.
 
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