3 signs your SEO campaign is failing


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Would love to hear some more thoughts on this. There is obviously a bucket load of reasons your ranking is falling. For example, We recently had a client that was sliding in organic for months. (yes, backlinks are playing a role) After hitting #23 we realized that the publish date on there WP home page was set to 2011, even though we had updated it. We changed the date and the very next day they shot up to #9 and have been holding for a month.


3 Red Flags That Your SEO Campaign Is Failing and How to Repair It

SEO campaigns need to begin with the expectation that they are going to require a dedicated workload, and that effective results are a product of long-term strategy, not shortcuts. Most businesses want the results to come immediately, and are not willing to make the proper investments.

Optimizing your brand visibility can take months of interpreting data, but it's in this commitment to building metrics that meaningful conclusions will begin to emerge. Whether you've hired an SEO Consultant or want to manage the campaign yourself, here are the tell-tale signs the campaign is failing, and what you can do to get it back on track.
 

Scott Rawlins

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Justin - There was no link in this, so I went ahead and added it. I think this was article you were referencing. If not, let me know and I'll change it to the correct one.
 

Linda Buquet

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Thanks for sharing Justin and for adding the link Scott.

J that's crazy about catching the date issue and it making an impact so quickly!
 
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Thanks Scott!

Yes, we had a handful of sites we tested this on. Every site jumped in Rank within a couple days and has maintained. We are still monitoring. I don't think this is good for every situation, but in this case it worked. We were showing the Date in the SERP snippet.

Here is a discussion on it. I can't find the case study that was done.

Using article published dates effects SEO?
 

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JoshuaMackens

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People were messing with homepage dates awhile back and at that time, it was being discussed as a black hat'ish SEO tactic.

I certainly didn't and still don't see it that way but what was being discussed is the fact that the rich snippet dates are for time sensitive content, such as blog posts. Not for something like a homepage.

I disagreed, set a homepage date for a client anyway but I can't say we saw a positive or negative result either way.

Then, about a month ago, I made 2 changes to this client.

The first change was a test on sitemap page priority. I jumped the sitemap page priority for the homepage and a few important inner pages.

The second change was an update to the homepage's date to that current day from a date about 7 months back.

3 days later we lost about 10 spots in our organic ranking across the board for our homepage terms. Our innner page keywords, strangely, stayed the same.

I immediately went back and reversed the changes. I set the sitemap priority back and removed the homepage date.

Exactly a month later, to the day, our rankings came right back.

I say all this to say be careful with homepage dates. I think dustybones is doing a better job at it than I was obviously, because we got popped.

I don't think we got popped by the sitemap change because we changed the priority for a lot of inner pages as well that didn't lose rank. I always thought it was because of the homepage date. I thought this because, apart from logical deduction, there was a rumor going around of some black hat SEO's awhile back trying to exploit the homepage date as a major ranking factor. In fact, for awhile, people were talking about it so much as a powerful ranking signal I thought it would either get turned down or get popped.

Anyways, who knows.

Dusty, keep doing your thing, it's obviously working and you're doing a great job :)

Everyone who is not Dustybones, be cautious :)

And remember, we could have dropped for a completely unrelated reason as well.
 
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Thanks for your insight Joshua. Yes, I did read in some situations sites had a drop in rank after changing the date. In those situations I think I remember that the date was not showing in SERPS and was within a year of first publish date. In our situations the sites had dates going back to 2013 for the home page and interior pages and the date snippet was showing in SERP. All the sites that had this older date and were changed jumped within a few days and have maintained. We did test a few sites with the date being closer and did not see any fluctuation because of the concern of a drop. Your correct in that there needs to be some caution. In the future I think I would only change the date under certain circumstances. Thanks for adding to this.....helpful.
 

JoshuaMackens

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Thanks for your insight Joshua. Yes, I did read in some situations sites had a drop in rank after changing the date. In those situations I think I remember that the date was not showing in SERPS and was within a year of first publish date. In our situations the sites had dates going back to 2013 for the home page and interior pages and the date snippet was showing in SERP. All the sites that had this older date and were changed jumped within a few days and have maintained. We did test a few sites with the date being closer and did not see any fluctuation because of the concern of a drop. Your correct in that there needs to be some caution. In the future I think I would only change the date under certain circumstances. Thanks for adding to this.....helpful.
Good stuff. That fits with what happened with us because it was within a year. Our date was showing in the SERP's though.

What you said also makes complete sense. I could see Google hitting someone for changing within a year. It could be construed as manipulation.

No matter what, keep doing what you're doing. It's working!
 
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So far its working, but its not something we are changing on a regular basis. What caught us was migrating to a new design a while back using the original template. The template had the old publish dates from the original site built in 2013. If anything, that is something to check.
 

mborgelt

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Great insights on the more granular things that I often overlook when diagnosing client issues. Thanks for the great info, everyone!
 

CodyBaird

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Caffeine algo update at play here. Rewarding "fresher", or what it thinks is newer content with the traffic.

I am Surprised that it can be manipulated so easily.

Sent from my SM-G900V using Tapatalk
 

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