coachmarino

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Made some optimizations but it's been a few weeks. When I compare our efforts to the competitors, we trounce them in every category, but we did some GMB stuff and some onpage stuff for the hometown keywords. I mean, I'd be actually shocked if we didn't improve.

But I'm thinking we should have moved up by now...generally I'm seeing movement in the 2-3 week time frame, we're past that and no movement.

Thoughts?
 

Phil Rozek

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What you describe sounds pretty normal, particularly for a new client. 2 things I've found:

1. Most gains don't happen on GMB, or sometimes even on-page. Not too many moving parts on GMB that influence rankings. Also, in your more-competitive industries, where everyone's on-page SEO ranges from decent to great, good on-page work won't necessarily put you much or at all ahead. In those cases the big differentiators tend to be links and reviews.

2. In competitive industries and for competitive terms it usually takes much longer than a couple of weeks to see any results. (Can you imagine how much spammier Google's results would be if people could very quickly see what this new page or that new link got them?) If the competitors are feeble, or a client was in bad shape before you started working with him or her, then of course you can make quick gains. But must of the time it is tougher sledding.
 

coachmarino

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Thanks Phil. The real problem when I took over the client is that my client is doing better than all of the other local competitors in citations and reviews! The #1 competitor has zero photos, zero reviews, no citations, and there are a variety of others ahead of us in our main search.

So that's why I diagnosed the issue as being mostly on-page, and in the GMB account that wasn't at all optimized. The page was clearly designed by digital marketers, but they used regional terms versus more localized (specific towns) terms. The competitors ahead of us are just positioned more simply in the most important town and only talk about that town. And as I said nothing had been done on GMB, so I felt something could be done there.

Prior to the pandemic, I was able to rank higher for searches in towns/regions within a couple of weeks particularly if I utilized GMB's posts.

So I guess I was just looking to see if time was a factor with the pandemic...

Otherwise I'm racking my brain here...
 

Phil Rozek

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@coachmarino, yeah, I know what you mean.

It's possible you've done enough to produce a bump, and just need to let it sit for a while.

Or you may hit a plateau because of links or competitors' spam, or because that top-ranked competitor has been ranking well for a long time and has built up enough historical data for Google to conclude that business is an extra-relevant result.

It's hard to comment on much in the abstract here, but this sounds like the time when links and time come into play.
 
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