Are Geotargeted Pages by Nature.... Spammy?

16 replies
  • SEO
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This is a question I've always been curious about.

But I've read various guides on how to create authority sites... and what they advise seems to conflict with the entire concept of geotargeting.

Take for instance this guide, some of you may have read it:
hxxp://www.blackhatworld.com/blackhat-seo/black-hat-seo/631067-phpbuilts-idiot-proof-guide-authority-site-building.html

In section 4 of the guide he states, "every page of your website should be targeting a unique set of keywords that are related to the entire theme of your site, but warrant their own page".

And its the last part "warrant their own page" that confuses me.

When I make local sites, I try to make a page for as many towns as possible. And its a grueling, tiresome, tedious process.

I basically create a county page, then a separate page for every town in the county. And its very difficult to write about a new topic for each page. So on every page I'm basically writing about the same or similar things, just that I word it differently.

And my question is, is that spammy?

Is it spammy to have 400 pages on a site, with every page targeting a different town, but then all those articles basically talk about the same basic topic (which is the service the business offers)?

Cause everytime I create these sites & pages, I always feel like what I'm doing is spammy. The pages don't really "warrant" themselves. But at the same time.. I don't see any other way of targeting all these towns.

I'm curious how more experienced marketers handle this? Because I've never understood the "proper" way to write geotargeted pages.

Thanks,

-RS
#geotargeted #nature #pages #spammy
  • Profile picture of the author coloma21
    Hey there,

    They actually aren't spammy at all. They are more directory style sites. I actually have huge site myself for a certain industry targeting hundreds of cities.

    It ranks really well, and i find them to rank much faster too. To be honest, my sites don't even have text in it. It's just an h1 tag, with a picture that has an alt tag for the keyword.

    it works great

    - marc
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    • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
      Originally Posted by coloma21 View Post

      Hey there,

      They actually aren't spammy at all. They are more directory style sites. I actually have huge site myself for a certain industry targeting hundreds of cities.

      It ranks really well, and i find them to rank much faster too. To be honest, my sites don't even have text in it. It's just an h1 tag, with a picture that has an alt tag for the keyword.

      it works great

      - marc
      Hmm. Thats very interesting.

      So you're basically just creating a page, adding a photo, alt tags and thats all?

      Does it make it harder to rank the pages or the site itself?

      If that actually works that would save me literally months of time.

      Thank you!

      -RS
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      • Profile picture of the author WVMike
        Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post

        Hmm. Thats very interesting.

        So you're basically just creating a page, adding a photo, alt tags and thats all?

        Does it make it harder to rank the pages or the site itself?

        If that actually works that would save me literally months of time.

        Thank you!

        -RS
        Well that may "sound" good for the onsite side of things (I agree that less work is always much more fun ), but you really have no clue what he's actually doing for offsite promotion.

        His domain could have excellent authority with lots of HIGH quality links so no matter what he puts out there it will rank pretty well. And you don't know what the competition is like...

        But...In theory with PHP's post...I can see it working because of the "balance" he likely has between the keyword density onsite vs. offsite links.

        I know you mentioned issues in another thread and your post and mine were deleted (WTF is that all about? Anyways...). On your local sites that are having ranking problems now compared to what they were doing, go back and change your keyword density per PHP's insights and see if their ranking improves. Maybe even take it down to nothing but keyword in the title/h1 on some if you have a decent number of exact anchor keywords on high pr sites?

        I think the whole point of PHP's post though is to continuously look to find the sweet spot by tweaking content more than links (since that is obviously easier to do and cheaper). One tweak can literally jump you up dozens of places in the serps. We all know it's not an exact science as we've seen one page rank great and another go nowhere and they are almost identical.

        That post really clicked for me though because without a doubt the HUGE majority of people doing SEO focus 95%+ of their efforts on linking (offsite). Some things never change...How do the most successful people make money? When everyone else is selling, they're buying!

        I know I've started going back and changing multiple sites since I read that post. And yes, it's starting to help on some, but I definitely need more practice too! I think the real test though will come on a newly built site. I will be able to TRULY monitor everything from scratch including the right number of links/anchors vs. keyword densities, etc...

        Good luck to you bro.
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      • Profile picture of the author coloma21
        Hey there,

        Just doing a followup on the thread. But yea, it's literally just an h1 tag, and a picture with alt tag keyword.

        Off course, you'd have to also consider the competition your in, etc.. as well as the quality of links your using.

        But let's just say that someone with a 500 word article doesn't necessarily have an advantage over someone with 0 article hahah!

        I even do this with competitive niches such as cosmetic surgery


        - Marc







        QUOTE=RedShifted;9030725]Hmm. Thats very interesting.

        So you're basically just creating a page, adding a photo, alt tags and thats all?

        Does it make it harder to rank the pages or the site itself?

        If that actually works that would save me literally months of time.

        Thank you!

        -RS[/QUOTE]
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        • Profile picture of the author SirThomas
          Originally Posted by coloma21 View Post

          Hey there,

          Just doing a followup on the thread. But yea, it's literally just an h1 tag, and a picture with alt tag keyword.

          Off course, you'd have to also consider the competition your in, etc.. as well as the quality of links your using.

          But let's just say that someone with a 500 word article doesn't necessarily have an advantage over someone with 0 article hahah!

          I even do this with competitive niches such as cosmetic surgery


          - Marc
          Do you use basic or a directory-type theme? Providing you're using WP to build your sites... lol
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        • Profile picture of the author Electrical
          Originally Posted by coloma21 View Post

          Hey there,

          Just doing a followup on the thread. But yea, it's literally just an h1 tag, and a picture with alt tag keyword.

          Off course, you'd have to also consider the competition your in, etc.. as well as the quality of links your using.

          But let's just say that someone with a 500 word article doesn't necessarily have an advantage over someone with 0 article hahah!

          I even do this with competitive niches such as cosmetic surgery


          - Marc


          What else do these pages have on them? Header, sidebar, and footer?

          I'm trying to understand what you are doing. You just have a page with only an H1 tag (I assume the city name?) and an image with an alt tag (I assume the city name as well?).

          If that comes up in Google results and the customer clicks on it, what happens then? They see an image and press the Back button back to Google? Or do they click on a sidebar navigation link?

          Currently I have city landing pages which each contain unique writing about the town and the electrical service I can provide that town. I'd like to make many more pages so if I could do it without all the unique content I would be VERY happy.
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          • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
            Originally Posted by Electrical View Post

            What else do these pages have on them? Header, sidebar, and footer?

            I'm trying to understand what you are doing. You just have a page with only an H1 tag (I assume the city name?) and an image with an alt tag (I assume the city name as well?).

            If that comes up in Google results and the customer clicks on it, what happens then? They see an image and press the Back button back to Google? Or do they click on a sidebar navigation link?

            Currently I have city landing pages which each contain unique writing about the town and the electrical service I can provide that town. I'd like to make many more pages so if I could do it without all the unique content I would be VERY happy.
            I feel your pain man.

            I've tested a lot of different things over the years as far as content goes for these geotargeted pages.


            1) Spun content - Back in the day, I'd take about 40-50 hours of my time to work on creating 1 huge spintax in The Best Spinner. I'd do some deep nested spinning and would carefully craft these spintax's so they were over 95% uniqueness. I also made sure they were written as well as possible.

            Advantages - I'd be able to churn out so many geotargeted pages (hundreds of pages) that every site I built wound up #1 on Google. I would upload about 15-20 pages a day and sometimes these sites would wind up on pages 2-3 before I even built any backlinks to them (mind you these are competitive local niches). When you build a site that is bigger than all your competitors, it's unbelievable how easy these sites are to rank #1. And once the home page ranks all the geotargeted pages will rank as well.

            Disadvantages - If you don't spin properly, your site's most likely will get penalized. I learned this on the first site I ever made. I rushed the spinning a bit more than I should.

            So the second site I built, I did a much higher quality spin, and that site has been ranking #1 for the last 10-11 months now (I have no idea how long it's going to last like this). Another disadvantage is - it's very hard to spin on the level of real pro's. I have a competitor in 1 niche who must have found the best writer / spinner in the world, because this guy's spun articles are unbelievably well done. And I can't imagine how much he paid to get the spintax done. I don't think anyone would do that type of spin for less than $1500-$2000. But his site has been dominating 1 of my niches for the last 5 years. And I think I'm the only one who ever outranked him but it didn't even last 1 year (this was the first site I made that wound up getting penalized).

            If you ask me, spinning still works till this day. I track a lot of sites that use spun content and are doing great. But the amount of time it takes to do it properly... isn't really that much less time than it would take to just write all the content manually.



            2) Dragon Naturally Speaking / Transcribing Content

            Advantages - You can "write" articles about 5 times faster than typing. Because all you do is talk into a mic. And if you use a good mic you'll have very few typos. You can rent out like 4-5 books from the library. I usually get older, less popular books. Then I open all of them at the same time, and go back and forth between all the books transcribing / rewording the content into my mic. There is no writers fatigue at all. And all the articles come out unique.

            Disadvantages - You may find yourself rushing content because you're not limited by your hands. Transcribing is similar to someone putting you in a race car and saying, "ok now, focus on the quality of your driving and don't hit any cars". But this can easily be controlled. And overall there really isn't that many disadvantages.



            3) Manually Writing

            Advantages - You get the most unique content. And better written content than the above 2 methods. So it converts better, reads better, you have better on page time, better user stats, better quality site in general.

            Disadvantages - As everyone knows, it takes an ungodly amount of time to do. I'm working on a new local site right now and it took me 5 days just to generate 35 articles. That's an average of 7 articles a day (I usually write for 2 hours / day). My goal is 400 pages. That means I'm looking at 2 months just to finish 1 site. And I'm hating every minute of it.



            4) Images

            Advantages - No writing, no spinning, no transcribing, no nothing!!! Just upload the same damn image on every page. You can build a 400-500 page site in hours lol. And chances are the pages will convert like gangbusters. Since you only need to write 1 really awesome article. To your average local marketer, this sounds like a dream. But I am very weary about things that sound too good to be true.

            Disadvantages - As of now I don't know any, because I've never actually used this method. But I plan on buying an aged domain this week to test and see for myself. Right now, like I said - it sounds far too good to be true. And I can't wrap my head around the idea that you can build a local authority site this way... just by using hundreds of images on all your geotargeted pages. But obviously if this works this is what I'll be doing on all of my sites.
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            • Profile picture of the author Electrical
              Originally Posted by RedShifted View Post


              2) Dragon Naturally Speaking / Transcribing Content

              Advantages - You can "write" articles about 5 times faster than typing. Because all you do is talk into a mic. And if you use a good mic you'll have very few typos. You can rent out like 4-5 books from the library. I usually get older, less popular books. Then I open all of them at the same time, and go back and forth between all the books transcribing / rewording the content into my mic. There is no writers fatigue at all. And all the articles come out unique.

              Disadvantages - You may find yourself rushing content because you're not limited by your hands. Transcribing is similar to someone putting you in a race car and saying, "ok now, focus on the quality of your driving and don't hit any cars". But this can easily be controlled. And overall there really isn't that many disadvantages.
              Dude, that is genius. Hell, I don't even need to get the Dragon software, I can just speak into my iPhone as if I was speaking out a text message and then copy and paste it into an e-mail. Go Siri lol

              That's a damn good idea, get quality content from the text of books that isn't online so it will be unique to Google.


              3) Manually Writing

              Advantages - You get the most unique content. And better written content than the above 2 methods. So it converts better, reads better, you have better on page time, better user stats, better quality site in general.

              Disadvantages - As everyone knows, it takes an ungodly amount of time to do. I'm working on a new local site right now and it took me 5 days just to generate 35 articles. That's an average of 7 articles a day (I usually write for 2 hours / day). My goal is 400 pages. That means I'm looking at 2 months just to finish 1 site. And I'm hating every minute of it.
              I'm not a good writer. I'm a damn electrician, most of us can barely read

              I paid a writer $30/hr. to manually spin my city landing pages (geotargeted pages, as you call them) just to make sure they are unique while still aiming to sell my service. I'm not sure if it was worth it.

              4) Images

              Advantages - No writing, no spinning, no transcribing, no nothing!!! Just upload the same damn image on every page. You can build a 400-500 page site in hours lol. And chances are the pages will convert like gangbusters. Since you only need to write 1 really awesome article. To your average local marketer, this sounds like a dream. But I am very weary about things that sound too good to be true.

              Disadvantages - As of now I don't know any, because I've never actually used this method. But I plan on buying an aged domain this week to test and see for myself. Right now, like I said - it sounds far too good to be true. And I can't wrap my head around the idea that you can build a local authority site this way... just by using hundreds of images on all your geotargeted pages. But obviously if this works this is what I'll be doing on all of my sites.
              I'm still not following this image thing. What image do you use? How could you use the same image on 500 pages? (Google can "see" images and tell when they aren't unique). And how will that work for SEO?

              I think the meat and potatoes of this idea is flying right over my head.
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  • Profile picture of the author yukon
    Banned
    Trust me, Google is the master when it comes to image recognition.

    Want proof, try this...

    Take 3 images from Google Images, combine those images into 1 big image, then search Google Images (search by image, upload to Google search) with that 1 big image. Google will most likely return all 3 images in the image search results.

    Anyways... Google picked out all 3 smaller images from that one big image.

    The first time I stumbled onto that multi image search I was like, Daaaaaamn!
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    • Profile picture of the author RedShifted
      Originally Posted by Electrical View Post


      I'm still not following this image thing. What image do you use? How could you use the same image on 500 pages? (Google can "see" images and tell when they aren't unique). And how will that work for SEO?

      I think the meat and potatoes of this idea is flying right over my head.
      LOL. To be honest I don't really under it myself.

      But the basic idea, you would open up a program like adobe photoshop or illustrator. Then you write your article in one of those programs and save the article as a jpeg.

      So in the end, you will have an article saved as an image. Then you upload that same image to all of your geotargeted pages, and optimize the alt tags to for the towns you're going after.

      The problem is, you'll have hundreds of duplicate images all over your site. And hundreds of pages that basically have no words or textual content. So I think it's a shitty idea. But I'm still willing to test it out since this guy claimed it's working for him.


      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      Trust me, Google is the master when it comes to image recognition.

      Want proof, try this...

      Take 3 images from Google Images, combine those images into 1 big image, then search Google Images (search by image, upload to Google search) with that 1 big image. Google will most likely return all 3 images in the image search results.

      Anyways... Google picked out all 3 smaller images from that one big image.

      The first time I stumbled onto that multi image search I was like, Daaaaaamn!
      Yep, that's the thing. I just don't believe Google is that stupid. I think any site he has ranking probably isn't going to last that long. Or maybe he got lucky.

      However, even if it works for the short term, it's not like you wasted any time on the content. And that's the only reason I'm willing to test this out.
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    • Profile picture of the author SirThomas
      Originally Posted by yukon View Post

      Trust me, Google is the master when it comes to image recognition.

      Want proof, try this...

      Take 3 images from Google Images, combine those images into 1 big image, then search Google Images (search by image, upload to Google search) with that 1 big image. Google will most likely return all 3 images in the image search results.

      Anyways... Google picked out all 3 smaller images from that one big image.

      The first time I stumbled onto that multi image search I was like, Daaaaaamn!

      I just did what you've described above and Daaaaaaaaamn!

      I picked 4 random images from their front page and created a collage. I even softened their edges and sent two back or brought two forward. After doing a search for my "new image", Google showed two images exactly where they came from and missed the other two... (who the heck came up with these new smilies?)

      Also, I decided to do a search for one of my own images that I embedded on one of my old (5 years old) sites. Of course many people placed it on their sites, but what shocked me the most is that I found one pdf document created by some company for their promo flier!!! Google even picked that!
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  • Profile picture of the author sonjay
    I am in the middle of investigating a simplistic process of getting geo targeted webpages in a relatively fast time. The idea is about creating different lists or directories, but promoting just one service in the home page. I will post in the case studies section whatever I find out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Blaine Smitley
    On average how many towns per site are you going for Red?

    I do this same thing that you're doing with small (electricians, painters, roofers) service oriented sites and the way I accomplish it is by putting a custom sized google generated map at the bottom of the page and a large (100-150 word) snippet from wiki about the town that I slightly reword with a backlink to wiki to read more about the town.

    But then 10 geo specific pages is about my limit per site. If there's a large metro city next by most people will type that in instead of their little towns name, or at least that's been my experience from looking at my analytic stats.
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    • Profile picture of the author Electrical
      Originally Posted by kid carson View Post

      On average how many towns per site are you going for Red?

      I do this same thing that you're doing with small (electricians, painters, roofers) service oriented sites and the way I accomplish it is by putting a custom sized google generated map at the bottom of the page and a large (100-150 word) snippet from wiki about the town that I slightly reword with a backlink to wiki to read more about the town.

      But then 10 geo specific pages is about my limit per site. If there's a large metro city next by most people will type that in instead of their little towns name, or at least that's been my experience from looking at my analytic stats.
      On your landing pages, you don't put any content about the services offered? If not, how do you get the visitors to convert?

      What I do on my landing pages:

      I write a couple paragraphs about my business and what I can offer the customer. This is a big pain in the butt because I have to write it unique for each landing page. Under that I have a link to my homepage where there is more content. They can also click on any of the links in the header, sidebar, or footer or call me directly at this time.

      I add an image unique to that town that anyone from the town would know.

      I re-write (manually spin) some information about the town. I get this info first from the town's website, if there isn't enough I then go to Wiki to get more.

      Then I put the name and position title of the electrical inspector as well as the address and phone number of the building department. This is just some added fluff.

      I just made up 15 more landing pages, but I copied and pasted the main content. No I have to go and manually spin it on each page.

      At least now I could go thru quick and do the writing without worrying about the HTML and web design. Coding by hand sucks.
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      • Profile picture of the author Blaine Smitley
        Originally Posted by Electrical View Post

        On your landing pages, you don't put any content about the services offered? If not, how do you get the visitors to convert?

        What I do on my landing pages:

        I write a couple paragraphs about my business and what I can offer the customer. This is a big pain in the butt because I have to write it unique for each landing page. Under that I have a link to my homepage where there is more content. They can also click on any of the links in the header, sidebar, or footer or call me directly at this time.

        I add an image unique to that town that anyone from the town would know.

        I re-write (manually spin) some information about the town. I get this info first from the town's website, if there isn't enough I then go to Wiki to get more.

        Then I put the name and position title of the electrical inspector as well as the address and phone number of the building department. This is just some added fluff.

        I just made up 15 more landing pages, but I copied and pasted the main content. No I have to go and manually spin it on each page.

        At least now I could go thru quick and do the writing without worrying about the HTML and web design. Coding by hand sucks.
        Yes Electrical I do put descriptions of what the products or services is, along with some flowery stuff about calling today.
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        • Profile picture of the author Electrical
          Originally Posted by kid carson View Post

          Yes Electrical I do put descriptions of what the products or services is, along with some flowery stuff about calling today.
          That's what I find to be a pain to have unique across 35+ different pages
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