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In my 9 years of Search Engine Optimization work, I've come to see many simple solutions to the most perplexing of problems. Today's is one suffered by many Internet Sales Managers when they just can't understand why they're not getting the traffic they think they should.
On a sales call earlier this morning I was discussing the value of Automotive SEO with a potential new client and brought to their attention that they were not even showing up for their own dealership name on Google Page One. When confronted with this notion, the ISM said to me "No no, I can see it plain as day, we've got the first 3 spots."
"I'm sorry Bob, but thats not what I'm seeing here," I tried to politely point out after 3 minutes of explaining how Google Page One Management on one's own name is extremely important. However, Bob insisted, to the point of wanting to send me a screenshot. Impressed with his know-how with the print-screen button and desire to prove me wrong, I quickly dished out my email address and received his message.
Its a well known fact that Google tracks you as you search, automatically determining your geo-target area based on your IP address, but a lesser known item is that Google also tracks the sites you go to frequently thru search, and provides you with results specific just to your account if you're logged into a Gmail or other Google acccount.
With a quick glance, I was able to determine the problem...
In a calm voice I tried to describe how Google indexes pages to the top of your search if you visit the page often enough and that Bob needed to Log Out of his Google account.
The moment he did, I heard a grunt of frustration. For the last 4 weeks he'd been "tracking" his site as "#1 on Google Page One" and couldn't understand why his traffic was still down. His worst fears realized, we immediately developed a digital marketing plan for Google Page One on his dealership name.
So next time you're looking for a true search engine results page - log out and search again. Even try it from another computer to be sure. You'd be surprised what you'll find.
Questions or Comments? Let me know! - Want your site reviewed for a Automotive SEO Pitfalls Blog entry? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Matthew O'Such is an SEO Strategist and Developer for PCG Digital Marketing. When he's not writing about the most common mistakes automotive dealers make with search engine optimization, he's doing dealer website reviews, teaching SEO classes and testing the latest techniques in digital marketing. Matt can be contacted at 732-450-8200 for your own review.