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james watt

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Looks like Joy's new GMB feature isn't the only change. Is anyone else seeing the GMB profile disappearing for a number of industries? Look up the profiles of any of the wedding photographers, hotels, or restaurants nearby (or just in the US?) and you'll see a new google+ only page with no local info, no CID, no reviews, though it does still have the 'verified business' check mark.

I posted about it here.

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"In an Industry Void of Promises, How Do You Guarantee Value?"

Interesting thread on the local search forum with different consultants weighing in on authority, sales, and their view of how to foster trust with clients.

Any thoughts on this topic? Or more specifically, what promises (or goals) do you make with a new client to set expectations?

Informal poll:

I've wondered about this and still don't have a totally satisfactory answer.

Say you find a business with a verified business, a decent number of reviews, a not completely terrible citation coverage (maybe not at all the important sites, but certainly without huge NAP problems) and poor backlink coverage.

Now, you do a general search for their keyword + city, click 'more results' and they're nowhere on the list.

I've seen this circumstance quite a lot, more lately I think than before (over the last month?)

What are your theories about what causes a company that's not completely new with decent citation coverage to be completely absent in maps? I'm starting to think the common factor is poor backlinks and organic rankings, but that'd be interesting if that would keep a company out of the map results entirely.

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Interesting conversation just starting up over how useful adwords express might be, if you have any stories it'd be a good place to share.

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I saw this morning Linda added a new section to the local search forum for PPC and paid advertising. Especially makes sense what with the impending 3-pack change to a 2+1 pack, I imagine paid search is going to be an important thing for all of us to have in our toolbox. Figured I'd post it here.

Any other consultants here expecting to have to get their adwords chops back up to speed with the coming changes?

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Quick Poll. Rather than splitting results, I figure I'll just link to the first poll I made over on the local search forum.

Details are in the post, but the gist... say you meet a business owner at a networking group, and notice they're using what's essentially a PO box for their address. You've warned them it's an issue, and they're asking if they should try and move, or if they should sit tight and hold onto their rankings. What do you suggest? Answers change of course if they're thinking of hiring you, for this survey assume they're going to try and implement any changes on their own.

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+Joy Hawkins just had (yet another) really interesting article published on SEL. In this one, Google switched a branded 3-pack to a normal 3-pack, then switched it back again a few days later. Gave a rare chance to look under the hood and see how Google ranks things differently between the two kinds of 3-packs. Definitely worth 5 minutes.

Anyone have any clients in industries/cities where they had to contend with a branded 3-pack instead of the usual?

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Garrett from just posted a new article he's put together, it's a killer bird's eye view of where to get questions answered about local SEO, by far the most comprehensive one I've seen. It's well worth the time for anyone to take a peak, or at least bookmark for later.

For those who read it, any favorite resources you found that you didn't know about? For me, I've been putting off getting on twitter, but since I've got a great list of people to follow already laid out for me now, might as well get to it.

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Tim Capper posted some really interesting things he noticed about how Google handles 3rd party reviews in the knowledge panel (spoiler: it handles it incorrectly).

Hotels aren't my scene, but I thought some of the pros here might find it relevant. Anyone else noticed discrepancies?

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There's a great thread about exact match domain names on the local search forum that'd be worth checking out if you've missed it so far:

Anyone else tried changing a client to an aged keyword rich domain?
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