Cobalt blocking Reach Local reverse proxy?

Terrence Kell
has anybody heard of this or experienced it? Does the Reach Local reverse proxy have a negative effect on a site? Or is Cobalt doing this to win search business from GM dealers / many who didn't sign up or re-sign for the IMR package. Any thoughts or insight would be much appreciated.
Shaun Raines
Hi Terrence, Yes, I've heard of it and experienced it. Sadly, many dealers have experienced it too. We've reached out to Cobalt on numerous occasions with specific dealer examples and every time our efforts end with no resolution. ReachLocal’s reverse proxy does not have any negative effect on a website although our competitors will tell you otherwise. Hello Chris, We've never met, but I'm extremely interested in your answer to this question. If Cobalt does not "block" ReachLocal's ability to proxy their websites why do we have so many instances of it happening? I've personally tried several times to resolve this issue with many of our mutual customers. If you would like to work together on a solution please contact me. You'd be a hero for the Cobalt dealers that choose ReachLocal for digital marketing. Regarding reverse proxy not being a best practice for executing SEM… I was surprised to read the five reasons you provided. Do you really believe any of them? All five sound great if you’re selling against ReachLocal to a dealer that doesn’t understand what you’re talking about, but none of them are reasons to avoid reverse proxy. Nobody’s perfect, but I haven’t found anyone providing SEM to dealers with better conversion rates than ReachLocal. Cobalt surely must monitor latency, up time and even consider the overall design of sites relative to consumer abandonment. Proxy site or not, I’m sure both of our companies employ technologies and processes aimed at providing the best results for our clients. We’re aware of the website landscape today and have run search to sites built by almost every vendor in the automotive space. Dealers using sites full of add on content, tools, coupons, etc… present nothing more than the need for a little extra set up time and an opportunity to tie their add on products into their search campaigns. You’re right that splitting your inbound traffic across multiple web properties can produce a negative Google result which is why our proxy sites are not crawled or indexed. When it comes to proxy and analytics ReachLocal can and does integrate with analytics tools that clearly separate a dealers search and display traffic from their organic traffic. If Cobalt does indeed allow their dealers to have a choice when it comes to SEM providers, we should work together to ensure Cobalt dealers are able to use ReachLocal including tracking via reverse proxy. Respectfully, Shaun Raines
Ryan Thompson
I know a dealer contact of mine in Ontario is dumping their Cobalt site as they signed a $2000.00 a month package with Reach and they were not able to properly run their campaign as they stated "Reach didn't work with Cobalt". This is a GM dealer. Not sure of all the technical ins and outs. Reach has had to create a pretty crappy landing page for the dealer unil the new site is up. Regards, Ryan Thompson Toronto
Breene Callahan
This topic is a bit old now but I have personally experienced Cobalt blocking ReachLocal's traffic to my website and wanted to say you aren't alone. It wasted a lot of time and we lost several days of exposure on Google. I find Cobalt's stance unacceptable and have been slowly researching alternatives ever since.
Nathan Hollenbeck
I have actually had a lot of experience with this at my previous company. There are a couple of tricks around this: 1. Reach Local Remote Conversion Tracking: Reach Local also has the ability to use a JavaScript rewrite that would allow you to swap out phone numbers and track form submissions remotely on our site. 2. UTM Strings. Whether you use the Reverse Proxy or the Remote Conversion Tracking, Make sure that you utilize UTM strings on all of your landing pages. You can work with your Local Marketing Consultant at Reach Local on implementing the UTM string. This will allow Reach Local's traffic to display as a traffic source in your Google Analytics reporting. - Note: Some manufacturers may not allow you to install custom codes on your site. I hope this helps!

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