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Hello all, 

I have been using Ahrefs today to audit the pages on my website. I started with the blog post. I was a bit shocked when I realized that 21 of my 35 blog post gets zero traffic. I've never done any link building to any of my blog post. The other 14 post get 1,500 visits a month combined. 1 post gets 1,000 alone. 

My question is if I should delete these post that get no traffic. I would just redirect the urls to another page on the site. These post were written a long time ago, and I don't think the keywords are right to drive any traffic anyway. 

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Verify that they get no traffic in analytics before you make any decisions to delete anything.

I wouldn't personally delete content unless it's no longer relevant, I would just polish it up and market it after I verified that I picked sane keywords.

If you picked extremely hard keywords, it's actually easy to do page level competitor link building, since you have tons of prospects to email and pitch. You won't rank that way but it's good for getting links.

I'm not sure if you do outreach marketing, but if you do, generally when content flops and you earn no links, you just "relaunch" the content and redo the outreach campaign 6 months later. You can just change the date in WP to the current date. Ideally, you kept track of who responded and find some more prospects.

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38 minutes ago, mki said:

Verify that they get no traffic in analytics before you make any decisions to delete anything.

I wouldn't personally delete content unless it's no longer relevant, I would just polish it up and market it after I verified that I picked sane keywords.

If you picked extremely hard keywords, it's actually easy to do page level competitor link building, since you have tons of prospects to email and pitch. You won't rank that way but it's good for getting links.

I'm not sure if you do outreach marketing, but if you do, generally when content flops and you earn no links, you just "relaunch" the content and redo the outreach campaign 6 months later. You can just change the date in WP to the current date. Ideally, you kept track of who responded and find some more prospects.

Thanks very much for the reply. I run a local service business. I’ve never done outreach myself. I hired an SEO firm that was doing outreach for me. After 6 months and $3500 a month I ended up with about 10 link exchanges. There was no movement in serps. I seemed to lose a lot of competitive ground in this time span. 

Recently, I’ve used a service that does the outreach for me and guarantees links. I used Gotch SEO for a smaller order of about 10 links. They came through in time and I saw some positive movement in my rankings on one of my sites. I tried another service on my most recent round of about 40-50 links. The service still has not placed them all 5 months later. I need to spend some time learning to do outreach because it seems that when you want to be more aggressive with building links these services have a harder time placing them. The articles that I was thinking of deleting are pretty terrible. It was from a time that I was creating content with no keyword target just so I had something to share on social. One of my other sites has a lot of this type of content that was written by an inbound marketing company. Just content for the sake of content. I appreciate the information and advice. 

At some point, I would like to build a robust PBN or another steady source for links. 

 

 

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A page doesn't have to have traffic to be useful when it comes to SEO. What I mean is supporting pages can help rank pages based on relevancy, example, internal SEO silos. Followed backlinks from authority pages are the strongest ranking factor but, again there's other techniques (relevant internal links) I'd use before even considering building backlinks from other domains. Do the easy stuff first (on-page SEO) and see where you end up in the SERPs, then tweak followed backlinks as needed

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2 hours ago, Robert Broome said:

Thanks very much for the reply. I run a local service business. I’ve never done outreach myself. I hired an SEO firm that was doing outreach for me. After 6 months and $3500 a month I ended up with about 10 link exchanges. There was no movement in serps. I seemed to lose a lot of competitive ground in this time span. 

Recently, I’ve used a service that does the outreach for me and guarantees links. I used Gotch SEO for a smaller order of about 10 links. They came through in time and I saw some positive movement in my rankings on one of my sites. I tried another service on my most recent round of about 40-50 links. The service still has not placed them all 5 months later. I need to spend some time learning to do outreach because it seems that when you want to be more aggressive with building links these services have a harder time placing them. The articles that I was thinking of deleting are pretty terrible. It was from a time that I was creating content with no keyword target just so I had something to share on social. One of my other sites has a lot of this type of content that was written by an inbound marketing company. Just content for the sake of content. I appreciate the information and advice. 

At some point, I would like to build a robust PBN or another steady source for links.

1

I'm actually creating a course and one of the sections will be about basic outreach marketing. I'm not charging for this information so it's not a sales pitch or anything here.

One thing I will say is that for outreach to work, it has to be great content. A regular blog post with a couple pictures doesn't really work. I recommend the interview technique, so find an expert, and interview them. You can actually just do this via email, or skype. So to be clear, the interview is part of a piece of content on a specific topic. After you finish up the content you can tell the expert about it and ask for them if they will share it. That makes the content much more "link-worthy."

My personal outreach process that I started using on my last site was not 100% based on trying to earn links, but also social shares, or to just do networking. This strategy worked far better than anything else I've ever tried. So it was the two-step approach, so I send them out an email to see if they are interested, then if they respond, I quickly size them up and come up with a range of strategies:

So if it's a blogger and they are linking to junk content, I will do the technique where I point that out and try to get the link replaced.

A middle of the road blogger that honestly has way more links and I doubt will link to me, I just ask them if they will share it (I include links to share.)

One of the better sites in the space, I might try to just introduce myself and ask a question like "So how long have you been blogging?"

If it's a superstar in the niche, I might try to spin this into me trying to do an interview with them, suggesting that I will post the interview on my site and I will link to them (assuming they are not a direct competitor.) Many times, when these types of people respond, it's not the actual writer anyways, it's an assistant, who will promptly file your link request in the trash can.

The idea here is, once they respond, I take it as a case by case basis and I assume they have gotten outreach emails before so I don't do things like asking for links.

Also, the first email you send them, should not be a template. It should be personalized and customized for them specifically. You want to prove that you are a person and are knowledgeable but most people don't respond so it has to be 2 to 3 sentences.

Note: I do not do local SEO at all.

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I know this is a little off track, but since outreach has come up...

I think the problem with a local business like yours and outreach is... I don't know how to put it. Most SEO's are idiots. They do this outreach on a big national level, and to me that does not make sense in a lot of cases. On a national level, the only thing I might be doing outreach for is maybe some DIY blogs where you can provide some content around garage door maintenance or something like how to know when it is time to replace your garage door.

What I would be focusing on for a business like yours is where can I get links locally. These can be beneficial for local rankings and also for direct, targeted traffic (they likely live in your market).

Some examples of what I mean...

  • Contractors you have worked with.
  • Real estate agents (Many of them put together a welcome packet for clients new to the area after they have bought their house. It will list things like local churches, doctors, dentists, auto mechanics, etc. to help them get adjusted to the community. Why not a garage door service tech?).
  • Chamber of Commerce.
  • Charity events. These are always looking for sponsors and usually link to them on their website. There are probably at least 2-3 annual 5K charity runs in your area you can sponsor for like $50-100. Look to the United Way or other specific charities you like. 

I would be concerned with any service that offers a certain number of links in their outreach. I just don't know how you can guarantee something like that. You are likely to end up with some garbage links just so they can hit their quota.

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1 hour ago, Mike Friedman said:

I know this is a little off track, but since outreach has come up...

I think the problem with a local business like yours and outreach is... I don't know how to put it. Most SEO's are idiots. They do this outreach on a big national level, and to me that does not make sense in a lot of cases. On a national level, the only thing I might be doing outreach for is maybe some DIY blogs where you can provide some content around garage door maintenance or something like how to know when it is time to replace your garage door.

What I would be focusing on for a business like yours is where can I get links locally. These can be beneficial for local rankings and also for direct, targeted traffic (they likely live in your market).

Some examples of what I mean...

  • Contractors you have worked with.
  • Real estate agents (Many of them put together a welcome packet for clients new to the area after they have bought their house. It will list things like local churches, doctors, dentists, auto mechanics, etc. to help them get adjusted to the community. Why not a garage door service tech?).
  • Chamber of Commerce.
  • Charity events. These are always looking for sponsors and usually link to them on their website. There are probably at least 2-3 annual 5K charity runs in your area you can sponsor for like $50-100. Look to the United Way or other specific charities you like. 

I would be concerned with any service that offers a certain number of links in their outreach. I just don't know how you can guarantee something like that. You are likely to end up with some garbage links just so they can hit their quota.

Last year, I joined the Local Chamber. It was $600 a year. I also joined a few home builders and remodeling groups. I got links in local directories and homeowners associations. I didn’t see any gain in traffic or SERP position. I got a few links in articles from blogs pointed at my home page and even on 2 of my community pages. Still no movement. I just continued to lose ground. 

I stayed up late last night going through my call logs and found that nearly all of my leads are first landing on a page in my blog for non-local topics. I now have my call tracking and my analytics connected and when we get a lead call it tells us their landing page, keyword, etc. So, either I have an issue with my Call Metric account, or a hand full of my blog post are responsible for most of my online leads. I’ve gone through my community pages and except for 1, those pages get no traffic. The one page that has traffic has 26 do follow referring domains, but it has not cracked the top 10. 

This is super annoying. I started another site, same niche, but e-commerce. Chose a url with the niche in the title. Once I started working on the site myself, I chose some keywords, created some pages, spent about $7500 on links and the phone started blowing up. Every time a link showed up I could see movement. 

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11 hours ago, yukon said:

A page doesn't have to have traffic to be useful when it comes to SEO. What I mean is supporting pages can help rank pages based on relevancy, example, internal SEO silos. Followed backlinks from authority pages are the strongest ranking factor but, again there's other techniques (relevant internal links) I'd use before even considering building backlinks from other domains. Do the easy stuff first (on-page SEO) and see where you end up in the SERPs, then tweak followed backlinks as needed

Thanks for the reply. I have links on these pages going to either my home page or relevant pages on the site. Not sure how wise the home page links are since I don’t get a lot of traffic for anything other than my business name.

I'm super confused and my marketing confidence is at an all-time low. I think I’ll head over to Warriors and give out some SEO advice. 🤓

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Another way to find types of link sources is look at your same keywords but for different locations. Example, say you're located in Las Vegas, look at the same keywords only do it for Knoxville (example city). Now look at the top domain/pages link profiles, where are they getting links? Repeat for 100 other cities/towns as needed. It's time consuming but the info. (link types/sources) is out there.

The goal here isn't necessarily to copy other domain link profiles ranked for different cities, it's to figure out the best or easiest types of links that you can get in your own area/city. You might also find some links from pages ranked for other city keywords that you can get for your own pages. 

 

  • garage door repair las vegas
  • garage door services las vegas
  • overhead door las vegas
  • garage doors prices las vegas
  • garage door installation las vegas
  • garage door opener las vegas

 

 

  • garage door repair knoxville
  • garage door services knoxville
  • overhead door knoxville
  • garage doors prices knoxville
  • garage door installation knoxville
  • garage door opener knoxville

 

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56 minutes ago, yukon said:

Another way to find types of link sources is look at your same keywords but for different locations. Example, say you're located in Las Vegas, look at the same keywords only do it for Knoxville (example city). Now look at the top domain/pages link profiles, where are they getting links? Repeat for 100 other cities/towns as needed. It's time consuming but the info. (link types/sources) is out there.

The goal here isn't necessarily to copy other domain link profiles ranked for different cities, it's to figure out the best or easiest types of links that you can get in your own area/city. You might also find some links from pages ranked for other city keywords that you can get for your own pages. 

 

  • garage door repair las vegas
  • garage door services las vegas
  • overhead door las vegas
  • garage doors prices las vegas
  • garage door installation las vegas
  • garage door opener las vegas

 

 

  • garage door repair knoxville
  • garage door services knoxville
  • overhead door knoxville
  • garage doors prices knoxville
  • garage door installation knoxville
  • garage door opener knoxville

 

Thanks for the reply. I actually did this last year for all of the largest markets in my niche. I found a lot of directories this way. I duplicated as many of these as I could. Some of the sites had links in article blogs and that is when I hired a company to do outreach for me. 

I have a few things going that I think is hurting me. My niche name is not in my url. My main office is in the suburbs where the traffic volume is low. In the main city near me, I have an address and a page set up on my site for that city. That page gets a little traffic. I have citations built and 26 do follow domains linking to me. My home page has almost 100. 

I think I could move way up if I could get some decent links to that page. The question is where I can find the right kind of links and what will they cost me. I don’t mind throwing some cash at this. I just don’t want to spend thousands of dollars getting links that won’t make an impact. I spent about $1000 buying a few links to another city based page. That sucker didn’t budge. The number one position in that Serp has zero links. I’m still off the 1st page and it’s 10 miles from my main office. I know $1000 is not a lot of money to spend on links, but I wanted to test it out to see if the page would budge. It didn’t. 

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4 hours ago, Robert Broome said:

 My niche name is not in my URL.

 

Not a primary factor for national or global rankings and I don't recommend changing the URL and then 301ing the old links to the new URL. You can, but I always try to avoid doing that.

 

" The number one position in that Serp has zero links. "

Are you sure? Usually, when that is what appears to be happening, there are links that SEO tools are missing for one reason or another. Or, the page has powerful internal links, such as a site-wide link in the navigation.

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33 minutes ago, mki said:

Not a primary factor for national or global rankings and I don't recommend changing the URL and then 301ing the old links to the new URL. You can, but I always try to avoid doing that.

 

" The number one position in that Serp has zero links. "

Are you sure? Usually, when that is what appears to be happening, there are links that SEO tools are missing for one reason or another. Or, the page has powerful internal links, such as a site-wide link in the navigation.

Thank you for the advice. It’s much appreciated. 

The site that dominates the serps in my area and get’s the most valuable traffic has the niche and city in the url. I’ve looked at their links and I don’t see anything special in volume or quality. That’s what lead me to my conclusions. 

I hope to keep learning and find out exactly how they are ranking so well. 

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31 minutes ago, Robert Broome said:

Thank you for the advice. It’s much appreciated. 

The site that dominates the serps in my area and get’s the most valuable traffic has the niche and city in the url. I’ve looked at their links and I don’t see anything special in volume or quality. That’s what lead me to my conclusions. 

I hope to keep learning and find out exactly how they are ranking so well. 

To be fair, avoiding URLs changes is basic advice. From my experience, it almost always causes problems, granted sometimes it's just a minor loss of traffic which eventually "corrects itself."

I wish I could say more but I only work with national sites, and those rankings are almost always links and the different properties of links, like their age and the approximate authority of the page they are on. It's still a little bit of a moving target because CTR data does play a role as well and I have no way to know everyone else's CTR other than guesswork.

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1 hour ago, mki said:

To be fair, avoiding URLs changes is basic advice. From my experience, it almost always causes problems, granted sometimes it's just a minor loss of traffic which eventually "corrects itself."

I wish I could say more but I only work with national sites, and those rankings are almost always links and the different properties of links, like their age and the approximate authority of the page they are on. It's still a little bit of a moving target because CTR data does play a role as well and I have no way to know everyone else's CTR other than guesswork.

Few people I’ve seen do it, but I think I’m going to try to drive some national traffic. I’m in a top 5 or 6 market in my niche, and I’ve found a list of low hanging fruit that are national keywords with some pretty significant traffic and not super competitive. I’ve ranked similar on one of my other sites. I think collectively they could drive several thousand visitors a month if I can just scrape on to the 1st page. I have one blog post for a non-local keyword that gets a lot of leads on one of my sites now. Many people on the top of the serps of my local city based pages only get 10-15 local clicks a month and there is a lot of competition. My site is built on Wordpress with a woo plug in. I could just add some products to the site to help monetize national traffic. It would be kinda low budget products, but something is better than nothing. 

 

As as for the pages outranking me for local keywords. One is a 4 page site with a UR and DR of zero and a couple of citations. They do not even try to rank outside of this one city. The page that’s dominating in my area has a whopping 13 do follow links and none look outstanding. Like I said, they have the city and niche in the url which is almost exactly the target key phrase. It’s in the page title and H1. Not sure what to make of it. All I know is that they are kicking my ass. They all must be masking links because of what’s shown I should be doing better. 

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4 hours ago, Robert Broome said:

Few people I’ve seen do it, but I think I’m going to try to drive some national traffic. I’m in a top 5 or 6 market in my niche, and I’ve found a list of low hanging fruit that are national keywords with some pretty significant traffic and not super competitive. I’ve ranked similar on one of my other sites. I think collectively they could drive several thousand visitors a month if I can just scrape on to the 1st page. I have one blog post for a non-local keyword that gets a lot of leads on one of my sites now. Many people on the top of the serps of my local city based pages only get 10-15 local clicks a month and there is a lot of competition. My site is built on Wordpress with a woo plug in. I could just add some products to the site to help monetize national traffic. It would be kinda low budget products, but something is better than nothing. 

 

 

It looks like you're straying away from the original goal (local traffic) because it (any traffic) appears easier.

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27 minutes ago, yukon said:

 

It looks like you're straying away from the original goal (local traffic) because it (any traffic) appears easier.

You are correct. I have been very unsuccessful for quite a while in growing my company through local traffic. I don’t really know what else to do. It seems my home page has lost the most traffic of any other page. I know when things started tanking through my analytics, but I don’t know how to reverse the trend. 

I built my company over the past 9 years by acquiring several of my competitors. Since the economy has improved the pool of companies willling to sell has shrank severely. Companies I could buy for $1MM 5 years ago want $2MM+ now and their revenue is flat. 

Trying something just seems like a better strategy than just sitting on my hands and watching the regression continue. By the end of this year, I will have lost 1/2 of my online Leads, which is significant. 

Note: Last year, I worked with a company on Rand’s Moz recommended companies list. During that time is when I saw some huge losses. It was very expensive and I’m still trying to figure out what went wrong and how this company got on that list. 

 

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11 hours ago, Robert Broome said:

Trying something just seems like a better strategy than just sitting on my hands and watching the regression continue. By the end of this year, I will have lost 1/2 of my online Leads, which is significant.

 

All questions I am asking are "conceptual" not specific. So I don't need to know anything about your business specifically.

This is B2C correct?

A little unclear, all you said was " I run a local service business. " I don't need to know what it is, but if it was B2B, I would do cold email marketing. That doesn't really work for B2C.

For B2C, my first question would be, are you utilizing retargeting and what does your sales funnel consistent of? I have personally not gotten paid advertising to work (profitable) when sending it directly to a sales page since Google adwords banned all of the affiliate marketers. I'll venture a guess that it can work for local because of phone numbers, but I completely wasted 10k on clicks before I realized that sending traffic into a sales page doesn't work (US ecommerce.) It works for brands that are well known, but trying to solve the "awareness problem" with traffic doesn't work.

11 hours ago, yukon said:

 

It looks like you're straying away from the original goal (local traffic) because it (any traffic) appears easier.

I agree.

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Like I said before, look other locations, preferably cities/towns with very tough competition. This way you know the top ranked pages/domains have good link profiles.

I searched looking for garage door keywords in Las Vegas, the very first link profile was a hit. What they're doing is getting followed dealer backlinks on manufacture sites like raynor.com. Same niche authority link.

Are you an authorized dealer for any big garage door brands? Do you have those types of backlinks?

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6 minutes ago, mki said:

All questions I am asking are "conceptual" not specific. So I don't need to know anything about your business specifically.

This is B2C correct?

A little unclear, all you said was " I run a local service business. " I don't need to know what it is, but if it was B2B, I would do cold email marketing. That doesn't really work for B2C.

For B2C, my first question would be, are you utilizing retargeting and what does your sales funnel consistent of? I have personally not gotten paid advertising to work (profitable) when sending it directly to a sales page since Google adwords banned all of the affiliate marketers. I'll venture a guess that it can work for local because of phone numbers, but I completely wasted 10k on clicks before I realized that sending traffic into a sales page doesn't work (US ecommerce.) It works for brands that are well known, but trying to solve the "awareness problem" with traffic doesn't work.

I agree.

Thanks for the responses. I do both B2B and B2C. My commercial department was built through submitting bids for buildings like car dealerships and factories. We service the accounts after the construction is finished. I also deal with property managers and home builders. I don't advertise in those areas of my business. 

What I am working toward is to get back a portion of my B2C leads that I lost last year. This target is residential homeowners. 

Yes, I am running a retargeting campaign. The calls to action on the site are phone calls and to set an appt online through our online booking app. I also have a product designer on a few pages that includes a webform. Very few people fill out the form because the product is complex. We reach out to them after they fill out the form with a phone call and emails. Once they respond and answer some questions we attempt to set a face to face appointment. If not, we send them a formal quote. They will then get a survey and some follow up emails about the company and the product. We have had very little success nurturing people to a sale if they won't set an appointment. In one section of my B2C business we convert 90%+ of those leads. In the section where the tickets are far higher we convert 45-50%. It has been as high as 63%, but we have drastically raised our prices since that time. After a face to face appointment does not close, the client will get a survey, a review request, and a series of emails. Our sales staff uses all day Wednesday and completes phone follow ups which they do quite well. 

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20 minutes ago, yukon said:

Like I said before, look other locations, preferably cities/towns with very tough competition. This way you know the top ranked pages/domains have good link profiles.

I searched looking for garage door keywords in Las Vegas, the very first link profile was a hit. What they're doing is getting followed dealer backlinks on manufacture sites like raynor.com. Same niche authority link.

Are you an authorized dealer for any big garage door brands? Do you have those types of backlinks?

Yes, I have a link from my main manufacturer. Their site also sends me leads. Last year, I made a list of manufacturers and affiliates. I asked them all for links. Some came through, and others did not. I spent a few months following up on these. I'll circle back on the 2 that didn't. 

I love Las Vegas. I used to live out there. I've been thinking of selling my company on the East Coast and starting up again in Vegas. My manufacturer has a warehouse right next to The Orleans. 

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56 minutes ago, Robert Broome said:

Thanks for the responses. I do both B2B and B2C. My commercial department was built through submitting bids for buildings like car dealerships and factories. We service the accounts after the construction is finished. I also deal with property managers and home builders. I don't advertise in those areas of my business. 

What I am working toward is to get back a portion of my B2C leads that I lost last year. This target is residential homeowners. 

Yes, I am running a retargeting campaign. The calls to action on the site are phone calls and to set an appt online through our online booking app. I also have a product designer on a few pages that includes a webform. Very few people fill out the form because the product is complex. We reach out to them after they fill out the form with a phone call and emails. Once they respond and answer some questions we attempt to set a face to face appointment. If not, we send them a formal quote. They will then get a survey and some follow up emails about the company and the product. We have had very little success nurturing people to a sale if they won't set an appointment. In one section of my B2C business we convert 90%+ of those leads. In the section where the tickets are far higher we convert 45-50%. It has been as high as 63%, but we have drastically raised our prices since that time. After a face to face appointment does not close, the client will get a survey, a review request, and a series of emails. Our sales staff uses all day Wednesday and completes phone follow ups which they do quite well. 

Well, the standard marketing consulting playbook basically says that "you need to work on your PR game" as that will always fix all of your problems.

Thank you that will be $100 for the call.

/joke

 

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