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Google And Geographic Optimisation


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#1 harpsound

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Posted 06 March 2011 - 10:16 PM

My site was conservatively optimised circa 2009
My niche is very small (harp sales in Canada)

The site has always placed top 3 in Google for a simple search like "harp ottawa"
This happened for any city in Canada.
This happened with a single mention of a city on the page

The last Google.ca algo has ratcheted up localisation seriously.
My "harp" queries are down 50%
I am redesigning my page optimisation so the cities are properly optimised for cities.
This involves a major site redesign.

So far so good
Google webmaster tools gives me the geo location option for Canada only.
I only sell in Canada.
BUT most incoming links come from the USA

If I make the geo locator "Canada" will that improve my position in the SERPs?
I think not

I prefer to Geo locate to "unlisted/null" so that I get more random USA links incoming.
I am realising that I need more link bait onsite like videos.
That traffic will be USA centric.

Thoughts?

#2 Michael Martinez

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 01:43 PM

geoLocal search results seem to be less about links and more about the information you or other sources provide that tie you to the location/city. Mike Blumenthal has written some pretty great blog posts about optimizing for Google Places.

I think the bottom line, though, is that Google wants to emphasize brick-and-mortar businesses in their community-related searches, so the "national" businesses (even if they have a physical headquarters) find their search visibility has been reduced at the community-by-community level.



#3 harpsound

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Posted 07 March 2011 - 08:31 PM

Thanks Michael

QUOTE
Paraphrase: Online national business are being downgraded in favour of bricks and mortar"


I agree - I have been watching this happening over the last year.
The cynical side of me says that B&M businesses advertise more and get preferential display over online businesses like ourselves who rely on SEO.
Google is positioning for local advertising/services directed towards cell phones/mobile - big money spinner in a few years.

The web is becoming a series of geographical neighbourhoods and it is becoming harder to place outside your own unless you are a larger name brand.




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