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Newb Question: Local vs. National SEO

Discussion in 'White Hat SEO' started by Manic, Dec 21, 2014.

  1. Manic

    Manic Newbie

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    Hi all, could someone shed some light for me onto why I rank in the top 3 for my keywords (business) in my town/state but not even in the top 30 outside of my area. How do I rank nationally vs. just locally? I'm in Australia.
     
  2. Disloyal

    Disloyal Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    The first thing that comes to mind is, in national it's more competitive than in the local SERPs.
     
  3. lancis

    lancis Elite Member

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    You rank locally because Google uses different algorithm for local search.
    There is no such thing as National search, i.e. normal SEO rules apply instead.
     
  4. Zwielicht

    Zwielicht Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    Local SEO is better if you own a local business and you're looking to appear in the SERPs to people in your local area. In the case of local SEO, you can actually outrank websites for local search results that you normally wouldn't outrank if you were just doing regular SEO.

    If you want to learn more about local SEO, then there's a whole sub-forum dedicated to local SEO here.
     
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
  5. Manic

    Manic Newbie

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    Thanks for the replies.

    Yeah for sure, my business is in it's 7th year, going well locally, but I want to reach out to more of the country so I really need to improve rankings nationally.
     
  6. Zwielicht

    Zwielicht Moderator Staff Member Moderator Jr. VIP

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    Since you're in Australia, it may benefit you to register a a .au country code top-level domain (ccTLD) to rank better in the SERPs when an Australian is performing the search.
     
  7. Techxan

    Techxan Elite Member

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    Your site is ranking with the local algo and you need to now work on ranking with the organic algo.

    You need to hone your onpage seo, do some content marketing, and set out on a backlink acquisition project.

    I do not mean building blackhat links, I mean finding ways to create value so other sites from the web link to your site.

    The biggest bang fro the buck in your case is honing the onpage seo, especially the internal linking structure.

    You should know that it is unusual for a company that qualifies for a local algo to rank nationally, because most local business do not have a nationwide footprint, and often when they do, the search terms that are used to find them are not local search terms.
     
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  8. HowDoYouKFC

    HowDoYouKFC BANNED BANNED

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    Almost true. Google's local search algorithm has special rules built in for national franchises that are actually local businesses. Wal-Mart, for example. Otherwise Wal-Mart would be competing for local search results on a location-by-location basis. Better example might be Jiffy Lube. You'll find Jiffy Lube's at the top of all search results in every locality on searches for "<city name> oil change", even though the individual stores may have done ZERO local seo (citations and whatnot). If these locations had to compete fairly, you'd see a diverse set of results vs. homogenous placement no matter what the location.

    Okay, so the first thing you need to rewire in your brain is who Google's customer is and it's NOT you. G doesn't care what you want to do and it doesn't adapt itself based on what you want, and what you plan to do. Egocentrism is the biggest obstacle to small business owners understanding G'ls local search algorithm. They spend a lot of time & energy being WRONG about a lot, and never become right until they unlearn what they have learned.

    So who is G's customer? YOU'RE customers are G's customers. And your customers don't care squat about you either. You come to THEM, and you come to Google. And now (lol) is your "Come to Google moment."
     
  9. HowDoYouKFC

    HowDoYouKFC BANNED BANNED

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    I'm breaking the post into multiples because the stupid filter is harassing me.

    Anyways, you don't get to start off in Left Armpit, Texas and then decide you'd like to have ranking in the local search results in Plano, Houston and Austin. If wishes and buts were fruits and nuts, we'd all have a Merry Christmas.

    Meaning, your niche determines if Google calls your keywords "local" or not, and all local keywords have a geographical region attached to them. So then how do you get listed in Austin if you aren't in Austin? You have to BE in Austin. Read the rules for Google search results. You must be able to physically "transact" business in the locality in order to qualify for a local business. The fact that you also service areas outside of your immediate locality gets into a "grey area" and you'll need some local expert advice on that. Electricians and AC repair are two trades that might drive 60 miles for a job, vs. no one drives 60 miles to a hairstylist. Google has distances factored in for some niches, so you'll have to consult with someone you can trust with your niche, because all your advice needs to be very specific to you. One HUGE bit of advice is don't hire some smarmy crooked "SEO" to do it for you. Invariably they get the local business deindexed. This is a serious warning. If you are considering hiring one of these "gurus" (who will want paid in advance) you are going to lose a lot of money, and whatever local rankings you already have.
     
  10. AaronHarris

    AaronHarris BANNED BANNED

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    Hi there, your question is very interesting. I am an online marketer and my business is about traffic. I can give you a free consultation about this. You can contact me at [email protected]

    or you can check the answers on http://www.yourtraffichits.com.

    best regards,
    Aaron
     
  11. PandaDomo

    PandaDomo Senior Member

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    I've been doing research on this for a good for a good two or three weeks now, but I don't know how correct I am on this. If I'm wrong in any aspect, whoever has an in-depth knowledge in this please correct me.

    I'm going to break this part up into a few sections a little so it's easier to understand, and I will only cover the things I feel are the key differences.

    Keyword Research:

    National: Nothing special here, just standard stuff. As an example, let's just say "how to do yoga at home" or something like that.

    Local: I think the difference here is that for keyword research, it's just tied to a geographical region. For example, it would be like "best yoga places in NYC". The difference here is that to use a keyword like this, your actual place of business requires an address located in NYC in order to be ranked on the first page. Other than that, I don't see any significant differences in keyword research.

    On-Site Optimization:

    National: Once again, just normal stuff that you should probably already know or could do a quick search on. I actually don't 100% remember what everything is since I got so used to just outsourcing this, but I believe it's just things like meta descriptions, meta tags, <h> tags, and probably a few other things I totally can't remember off the top of my head. Sorry, but I totally suck with this.

    Local: Same stuff, but I think the key difference is that you need a business address listed as well on your page. I couldn't really find a huge difference in terms of on-site for the site itself. However, as an example for the next part, let's say your address is "123 ABC St"

    Ranking:

    National: Once again, I can't really explain it that well, just your regular stuff. (I suck, I know)

    Loca: Seems to me, the largest difference is using properly optimized Google+ listings, a good amount of reviews on Google+ (5 reviews to get the stars to show), and using properly optimized local citations. One of the things that is most important I find everywhere, is that the business address must be the same across all the citations and listings and wherever else. Like I used above "123 ABC St" must be used across everything, using something like "123 ABC Street" instead and mixing it up would totally screw you sideways.

    I know my explanation isn't very descriptive, but there's not a HUGE difference between the two. At the very core, it's the same thing, you just have a slightly different approach is all.

    Also, to apologize for my really shitty explanation, here's a few really useful links I found for local optimization:

    http://www.shopify.com/blog/1515607...on-tips-for-local-seo-to-help-you-rank-higher

    http://www.poweredbysearch.com/skyrocket-local-seo-google-plus-local/


    And finally, something like a huge directory of everything:

    http://radicalmustache.com/ultimate-local-seo-guide/#ch2

    Anyway, I hope I helped you out at least a little bit or pointed you in the right direction.