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Local SEO - KW synonyms

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by tippfein, Jun 25, 2014.

  1. tippfein

    tippfein Newbie

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    Hello guys

    I've been doing SEO for a few years now so I have an average experience on this topic, but lately I've been trying to get in the local SEO market in my city and there are some pieces of the puzzles missing (there always are, I know). I've been searching the forum for this topic for 2-3 weeks now, but haven't been able to get a definite answer to this:

    How do you rank locally for all the synonyms of a keyword? For example: main KW: rent a car+city, synonyms: car rental+ city, car hire+city etc

    I have understood the main requirements for a good local placement: ON page SEO, citations, good links. So far I got the business listed in the local pack for the main kw, but no way for the synonyms. And the competition showing up in the synonym packs is really poor, I mean all the backlinks are mostly from web directories, or sitewide banners, and the citations just a handful [not that many big business directories in my country]. I feel there is something missing here, but can't figure out what.

    At this point, I have the homepage of the site optimized for all the kws (main + synonyms, 4 in total), and the homepage ranks on 1st page for all 4 kws (organic, but not in the pack - just the main kw is in the local pack).

    So my QUESTION is:

    Do I need to create a separate page targeting one of the synonyms, optimize it and build links to it? Or how do I target the synonym for the local pack?

    All the local SEO info found in the forum so far is about keyword research, optimization, building links, building citations, but how do you target a specific keyword?

    IMO, citations can't help you rank locally for a specific kw, they help you for whatever kws Google thinks you are fit to rank for. Backlinks (anchor text more precise) definitely have an influence, but there is one more thing. Where does Google pull from the list of kws he should rank you for? Google + page description (don't think so), text from reviews (not likely, the competition has reviews with no text), text from 3rd party reviews (not likely, there are none for the competition), business category (duplicated the categories used by the competition, but no improvement). What am I missing guys?

    The post got a little too lengthy, but I wanted to give as much info as possible on the subject.

    Thank you in advance for any replies!
     
  2. Andrew Scherer

    Andrew Scherer Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    I like building out subpages for 2 different reasons. 1. It lets you target specific keywords more effectively. and 2 it boosts the content authority of your site which is something local sites often neglect.
     
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  3. Techxan

    Techxan Elite Member

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    Hummingbird kind of flipped the script. Hummingbird was all about synonyms. It addressed the problem of people creating multiple pages to target very similar keywords.

    What you need to do is create groups of related keywords (use the adwords ad group system, considering that Google creates an ad group by determining that these keywords related its a good place to start.), and include them all on the same page. You create a separate page for each group and get the targeting to hit the strongest keyword in the group.

    Everything is relevance right now, and the LSI component of including those synonyms in the page will rank the page for more than a few keywords and strengthen the ranking for the main keyword.

    You are right that the description does not help rank, but you are wrong about citations not ranking a specific keyword. You can rank a local site with onpage SEO and citations alone in many markets.

    Another thing to consider is that Google has a predetermined notion of what a local keyword is. Since most searches are unique, many real local searches will not be considered a local keyword by Google simply because Google has taken a short tail approach. "Boston carpet cleaning" is obviously a local term, but "Carpet cleaner in Boston who accepts PayPal" probably isn't.
     
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    Last edited: Jun 25, 2014
  4. BlueSteele

    BlueSteele Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    I think it has a lot to do with on page stuff (your website), but many agree that making sure your synonyms/kws are in your reviews, both in Google and on 3rd party sites is helpful. Note that unlike in previous years, most all the content, including the reviews on a Google Local page is indexed. Try and see. Which IMO means that you can indeed practice onsite SEO with your listing, which brings us back to reviews ; )
     
  5. tippfein

    tippfein Newbie

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    Thank you for your reply!

    Local citation do help you rank, but they don't choose what keyword to rank you for, that is what I meant.
     
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  6. Techxan

    Techxan Elite Member

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    You are mistaken. Well how you said it is wrong. The page targeting will determine the keywords you rank for, and citations will rank them in the local algo.
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2014
  7. tippfein

    tippfein Newbie

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    Thanks, that's what I meant to say.

    Any more opinions on this topic?
     
  8. 1inalifetime

    1inalifetime Newbie

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    Blog posting for local keyword is good also.