I have another question regarding the city + state and the Google results. If I do a keyword search with keyword1 + keyword2 and keyword3 [2 and 3 being my kind of service] with the additional of city + state, I'm in oblivion.
But if i use the same keywords but put the city + state in quotes, I'm on page 3. Any idea why the results would be so different?
Different search = different results. Its my observation that many "average" web users often use quotes and end up frustrating themselves more than helping. My fiance does this all the time. She'll put a six word string in quotes and get no results...
Keep in mind that anything in quotes narrows the search to JUST sites that have that EXACT phrase associated with it.
My guess is that you are doing this search for a non-major city. If you search for say:
podunk idaho lawyers
...you'll get different results than
"podunk, idaho" lawyers...
b/c the second one is looking for that exact term. If your site says all kinds of things about podunk, and all kinds of things about idaho, but not exactly "podunk, idaho" than you are out of the mix.
In your case it seems as though this narrowing has helped you, bringing you from nowhere to page 3. Thus, in comparrison your site is better optimized for the phrase in that order. Let's say you are doing Chicago, Illinois instead of Podunk, Idaho. There are many sites that would likely have "Chicago, Illinois" in that order, thus quotes or no quotes theres lots of competition. However, with a small city there are still likely many sites - but more likely sites that might talk and be really really relative and optimized for Idaho, and just mention Podunk once or twice somewhere in passing or on one or two links. Here, your site moves up significantly as all these not-as-evently-relative-to-the-entire-search-phrase (hahaha) sites now drop out, leaving fewer sites which mention it exactly in said order.
Hope that is at least moderately clear.