Mar 1, 2018
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Hi Everyone, I've got a bit of a confusing SEO issue and having searched long and hard for the last couple of weeks and have just come across this forum which seems to be the right place to ask the question! Apologies in advance for the long post, I've put an abridged version below also.

We have one main keyword and it seems to have disappeared in some locations. The main keyword is "clothing manufacturers" and up until recently we had stability for almost a year.

We're based in London, England and we regularly check "clothing manufacturers" to see where we're showing in search, and we usually see between 3rd - 5th. We use AHREFS to track rankings and noticed recently that "clothing manufacturers" had disappeared totally.

We asked some people in different areas of the country to check where we were showing in search - one in Somerset, one in Liverpool, one in Beckingham and we used a VPN in Manchester. In all of these areas we aren't ranking for our main keyword at all. In London though we're 4th - 5th which is the lower end of normal.

We then checked other keywords and it turns out "clothes manufacturers" is one we're also not ranking for outside of London.

However for "clothing manufacturers uk" and "clothes manufacturers uk" we are ranking for in every location we have tried. "Clothing manufacturers uk" is currently the keyword which brings us the most traffic.

There are no manual penalties in webmaster tools, but looking at analytics it looks like our impressions for the main keyword have been down over the past 90 days, so we think we have had a problem and not realised for some time.

Around a week before we see that our traffic for "clothing manufacturers" dropped, we made some structural changes to the website homepage, where we added LSIs, more H2s, more long tail keywords and more content, taking the copy from around 500 words to around 1100 words. This was in an effort to make the homepage less keyword stuffed and more natural. As a result of this we saw an overall increase in traffic and enquiries, and that's the reason we didn't notice for so long that traffic from "clothing manufacturers" has dropped so badly.

Our first thought is that this might be something to do withSchema. Our website was until last week using a schema which included our "postal address" which is our physical office location in London. The schema was implemented in June 2017 and we have noticed that 3 months after implementing the schema, in October, our traffic fell dramatically for our main keyword, "clothing manufacturers". At the same time, our traffic for "clothing manufacturers uk" increased dramatically.

Interestingly, the schemas used by our competitors don't include their office addresses and they show up all over the country for "clothing manufacturers" and "clothes manufacturers". One of our competitors is physically within half a mile of us.

Have you guys seen a schema limit a company to searches only in one locality before? We have now removed the address from the schema to see if we start ranking all over the country again, like we used to before we implemented it. If this is the problem then it could take 3 months to turn around like it did for us to get in to this situation (Schema implemented June 2017, traffic fell October 2017).

We're therefore trying to investigate every possibility to ensure we leave no stone unturned.

Do you have any thoughts on the problem and if it could be schema related, or possibly something else?

Thank you in advance!


- Keywords "clothing manufacturers" and "clothes manufacturers" no longer ranking around the UK. Still ranking in London where we are based.

- Still ranking well for "clothing manufacturers uk" and "clothes manufacturers uk".

- Traffic for "clothing manufacturers" dropped 3 months after implementing schema and one week after making changes to website homepage (increased word count, added long tail keywords, LSIs and H2s).

- Schema included "postal address" which we notice none of our competitors have. They rank all over the country for "clothing manufacturers". One of our competitors is based within half a mile of us in London.

- Could having the address in the schema limit us to one locality? Could it be something else entirely?
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