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The Essential Local SEO Strategy Guide

By SEO, Ubertor, Wordpress

I recently read a great post about local SEO strategy from MOZ Pro. You can click here to read the whole post.

According to MOZ. local SEO is “Local SEO is the practice of optimizing a business’s web presence for increased visibility in local and localized organic search engine results. Proximity, prominence, and relevance are the three pillars of local search. Local SEO employs a wide array of technical and creative efforts to convince search engines that a business should be prominent in their results as a relevant answer to online searchers in close proximity to each business location.” Also imporant to note “a Google representative stated in 2018 that 46% of Google’s searches have a local intent.” We can only assume that it is much higher now.

I encourage you to read this post.

How to Optimize Real Estate Web Pages for SEO and Improve Rankings in Google

By SEO, Website Design

There is a great post on about optimizing web pages. This is a recap, but I recommend reading the post.

Make your URLs read well

Your URL should be readable to a human and make sense. It doesn’t need to be perfect English, but at a glance the content that you would expect to see on the page should be clear. A good test is to see if your URL reflects your page title.

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Improve Your Website Local Ranking on Google With Google My Business


There is a great article in Google My Business Help about how to improve your local search results. Read the article here. If you have not already applied and set up Google My Business this should be the next thing you do. Click here to apply. With a Google My Business Account, you get more than a business listing. Your free Business Profile lets you easily connect with customers across Google Search and Maps. You can post photos and offers to your profile to show what makes your business unique, and give customers reasons to choose you every time. Your customers are ready to connect – by calling, messaging or leaving reviews. Now, with more ways to transact, you can do more business.

Here is a small business guide to setting up Google My Business.  Click here.  Or read the Headway Capital guide. Click here.

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Top 10 Google Quality Guidelines To Help Google Find, Index and Rank Your Site

By SEO, Website Design

I found an interesting article in Google Webmaster Guidelines that I want to share with you. You can read the article by clicking here.

From the article “These quality guidelines cover the most common forms of deceptive or manipulative behavior, but Google may respond negatively to other misleading practices not listed here. It’s not safe to assume that just because a specific deceptive technique isn’t included on this page, Google approves of it. Webmasters who spend their energies upholding the spirit of the basic principles will provide a much better user experience and subsequently enjoy better ranking than those who spend their time looking for loopholes they can exploit.”

Basic principles

  • Make pages primarily for users, not for search engines.
  • Don’t deceive your users.
  • Avoid tricks intended to improve search engine rankings. A good rule of thumb is whether you’d feel comfortable explaining what you’ve done to a website that competes with you, or to a Google employee. Another useful test is to ask, “Does this help my users? Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?”
  • Think about what makes your website unique, valuable, or engaging. Make your website stand out from others in your field.

Top 10 Specific Quality Guidelines

Avoid the following techniques:

  1. Automatically generated content
  2. Participating in link schemes
  3. Creating pages with little or no original content
  4. Cloaking
  5. Sneaky redirects
  6. Hidden text or links
  7. Doorway pages
  8. Scraped content
  9. Participating in affiliate programs without adding sufficient value
  10. Loading pages with irrelevant keywords

And here are three more to add to the list:

  1. Creating pages with malicious behavior, such as phishing or installing viruses, trojans, or other badware
  2. Abusing rich snippets markup
  3. Sending automated queries to Google



Google Confirms Speed Update is Rolling Out


Google confirmed that the Speed Update scheduled for July is now rolling out for all users. This means page speed is now being used as a ranking factor in the mobile search results.

In their original announcement back in January,  Google said that only a small percentage of queries would be impacted, “those that deliver the slowest experience to users”. Slow pages may still rank highly if they have high quality, relevant content.

The move is separate from mobile first indexing and will affect all mobile sites, including those that haven’t yet officially been moved over to mobile-first indexing.

Google doesn’t give a specific speed metric that your site should be aiming for and John Mueller said sites could improve incrementally, so small gradual improvements to slow sites can help rankings.

Google has plenty of tools to help you improve your page speeds.

Test My Site is a simple to use mobile speed testing tool which gives a a general rating and an estimated percentage visitor loss figure due to loading speed.

The Page Speed Insights tool will test your mobile and desktop speeds and give suggestions for how to improve. See the Wordtracker case study on how we improved our speeds using this tool.

Google also refers users to their Lighthouse tool and the Chrome User Experience Report to analyse a page’s performance.

Featured Snippets in Search

Is Content Important? Check Featured Snippets in Search

By Marketing Strategy, Realtor Marketing, SEO, Website Design

If you don’t believe the Google algorithm has evolved into making content the number one search result criteria then check out “Google’s Featured Snippets in Search

We had no idea this new feature had been added to Google search until a client called and said he had 7 phone calls in one day about cottages for sale on a specific lake. At the top of the page was a box with an excerpt from the page on his website, a photo excerpted from the page and a link to the page. Right below that is a link to the page again. Try your own search for lake vernon cottages for sale and see for yourself.

We did a little investigation and learned what Google has to say when a user asks a question in Google Search:

“we might show a summary of the answer in a special featured snippet block at the top of the search results page. This featured snippet block includes a summary of the answer, extracted from a webpage, plus a link to the page, the page title and URL.”

“The summary is a snippet extracted programmatically from a webpage. What’s different with a featured snippet is that it is enhanced to draw user attention on the results page. When we recognize that a query asks a question, we programmatically detect pages that answer the user’s question, and display a snippet as a featured snippet in the search results.”

How can I mark my page as a featured snippet?

You can’t. Google programmatically determines that a page contains a likely answer to the user’s question, and displays the result as a featured snippet. The only way to achieve this incredible advantage is to continue to add relevant keyword content in context so your page is the authoritative result for the search terms.

One thing I find interesting is that the page that is featured in the snippet does not have a lot of content which adds to the mystery of Google. Check it out.

SEO for Real Estate – No Shortcuts – Take the Long Route

By Realtor Marketing, SEO

Just as there  is no sure get-rich quick scheme there is not fast track to a first page ranking of your website. SEO is an on-going process interrupted with every algorithm update released by Google or Bing. While there have been at least 5 updates to the Google algorithm and no one know for sure what they all are the one thing the experts agree on is – Content is King.

If you want your website on page 1 of a search it has to deserve to be there. To deserve to be there your website has to answer the search query in context. In short, if all of the words the person types in the search box are not found in context on your website then you will not appear on page 1. You can’t blame Google. If they do not put the best results on page 1 there is a good chance you will rely less on the internet or you will use Google less often and that means lost revenue.

Search engine optimization (SEO) for Realtors is a process. It starts with making sure all of the static items are checked off like keyword Page Titles and Descriptions, H1 headings on pages and lots of relevant content. Then the next step is to update the content on your website regularly through blog posts and by adding complete pages of relevant content related to what you want your website to be found for.

So what do we recommend?

  1. Add content worth reading focusing on the area, type of real estate and type of client you are trying to attract.
  2. Conduct searches using the keywords you want to be found for and see what websites on page 1 are doing to get there.
  3. Monitor your Google Analytics to see what pages are being visited and if your blog posts are being indexed and read,
  4. Develop a sustainable blogging program. A 2 line blog post with a great keyword title every day will eventually outrank a long blog post added once a month.

Contact us for more information about our guest blogging services and search engine optimization services.

Should I Register a .REALTOR Domain Name?

By Marketing Strategy, SEO

As of October 23, 2014 the US National Association of Realtors (NAR) and CREA in Canada have made available a “.REALTOR” domain name for your website. It’s a new top-level domain like .com, .ca and .net exclusively for their members and representative organizations. Only REALTORS® can use the new .REALTOR domain.

Should you get one? If you get one what do you do with it? What does it do for your marketing?

The Rules

  • Claiming .REALTOR domain names are first-come, first-served. At minimum,
  • Only members of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® (NAR) and The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) can use the .REALTOR domain
  • Members must use their first, last or full name in their domain name as it is in their NAR or CREA membership record
    Either your full first or full last name must come directly before .REALTOR.

Can I use just my first name? Yes i.e. Robert.REALTOR
Can I use just my last name? Yes i.e. Anderson.REALTOR
Can I use my middle name? Must be used with first or last name only i.e.  JohnAnderson.REALTOR (where middle name is John)
Can I use my nickname? Can use nicknames for your formal first names as our system accepts over 1 million common nicknames i.e.  Bob.REALTOR orBobAnderson.REALTOR
Can I use my initials? Must be used with last name, not as a standalone i.e.  RAnderson.REALTOR
Can I use words or a phrase before my name? Can use as long as it is appropriate i.e. TeamAnderson.REALTOR or SellwithBob.REALTOR
Can I use numbers? Yes, before or after your name i.e.  Robert1.REALTOR or 21RAnderson.REALTOR

The number one reason to register a .REALTOR domain is so no one else can, but other than that I do not see any benefit.