Directory Showing In Brand Search Term Results

wexed

Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2019
Messages
10
Hi,

i'm new here. I tried searching since I thought this question has been asked before, but unfortunately i couldn't find anything.

I run a local business focused on maid cleaning services. When you search for my brand name the usual suspects pop up in the search results.

  1. My homepage
  2. Homeadvisor
  3. Yelp
  4. Angie's List
  5. Thumbtack
  6. eLocal
A few months ago, I signed up with eLocal to test their marketing services. Their service is fine although they manage to draw out a lot tire kickers. The issue with them is that they now show up in my brand name search results and the title of their page has a tracking phone number. They're now charging me $20 each time somebody calls me through that number which is quite annoying. It's particularly annoying because existing customers who are trying to reach me are dialing that number quite frequently.

On top of that, in the search results for my brand name there are now 3 different phone numbers which is confusing to most people.

What I tried to do is add a branded keyword to my adwords and run it above them but so far that hasn't helped that much.

I put my phone number in my contact us page and I tried to have the meta terms for my contact us page look very similar to their page in an effort to show it above them but google doesn't rank my contact us page very high.

Is there anything else that I can do?

I know that you can request google to omit certain search results. I read through their FAQs and I didn't find this as a valid reason to omit a search result. I would think though that listing someone's business and intentionally putting a wrong phone number doesn't seem ethical or legal to me, but what do I know.

Some of my competitors have mostly their organic pages show as search results 1-4. How would I be able to do that?

Please let me know what I can do. Thanks.a
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,726
Have you built any business listings? The more of those you build the better your chance to have some of them push elocal down.

You could also put a generic description on elocal and a unique description on a few of the other higher authority directories which may push them above elocal for branded.

Also, getting reviews to Facebook, Yelp, and other directories will a) give unique content so Google will rank them higher and b) people are more likely to click on those instead of elocal, read reviews, and read enough to make a purchasing decision before moving to elocal.

Finally, have you considered cancelling elocal and instead hiring a Local SEO company for what you pay elocal each month?
 

Tony Wang

Member
Joined
Oct 13, 2014
Messages
94
In addition to what Joshua said, what do you mean that your branded adwords isn't helping much? Do you mean your ad isn't at the top? Or that people are skipping your ad and still clicking elocal?

Are you locked into a contract with elocal?
 

Zhivko

Member
Joined
Mar 15, 2019
Messages
37
@wexed Well, it seems eLocal are doing a great job! : )

If I understand correctly, you don't want to cancel eLocal or replace them with another directory. You simply want your website to rank #1 for brand searches.

I think what you need is a few strong, relevant, local backlinks. If a directory outranks you, then your website lacks authority in Google's eyes.
 

wexed

Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2019
Messages
10
1. I have 100s of business listings. The majority show below eLocal
2. I have not cancelled because I'm still testing the service and at this point I'm worried that the tracking numbers will stay and redirect to someone else
3. What eLocal does different is that there's a phone number in the title. So I guess some people just scroll through search results, see the number and dial it
4. My website is number 1. No directory outranks me but my phone number is not in title.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,726
1. I have 100s of business listings. The majority show below eLocal
2. I have not cancelled because I'm still testing the service and at this point I'm worried that the tracking numbers will stay and redirect to someone else
3. What eLocal does different is that there's a phone number in the title. So I guess some people just scroll through search results, see the number and dial it
4. My website is number 1. No directory outranks me but my phone number is not in title.
1. Getting reviews and unique content on the other prominent directories as I mentioned before may help push them down.
2. If you're worried about the tracking number staying and redirecting, this concern will only grow over the many months you keep them and the number makes it into more people's contact lists as your main number. A) you could talk to elocal and make sure they'll port the tracking number over to you if you cancel or B) ask them to stop using a tracking number and make sure you ask "how did you hear about us?" when people call and you can test elocal that way without risking a tracking number.
3. That is possible. You could ask them to remove it.
4. Maybe try that as well.

I have a suspicion elocal may be generating these leads on their own. The % chance that many consumers are scrolling through your branded search results and relying on elocal to call vs the plethora of other options (knowledge pangel, website, other directories) is small in my opinion.
 

wexed

Member
Joined
Apr 29, 2019
Messages
10
I'm specifically asking about my current clients calling me through their tracking number (which I get through callrail). i.e. they're not leads.
 

JoshuaMackens

Local Search Expert
Joined
Sep 12, 2012
Messages
1,726
I'm specifically asking about my current clients calling me through their tracking number (which I get through callrail). i.e. they're not leads.
Okay, that's the piece of info I was missing.

If that's the only place that number is located then it sounds like your conclusion is correct. Honestly, I'm incredibly surprised.

The only solutions I have for you are above. I think they're your best bet.
 

Tony Wang

Member
Joined
Oct 13, 2014
Messages
94
I think it's highly unlikely elocal will change anything they're doing. If they're only charging $20/lead, it's probably part of their strategy to get useless leads, like calls from old clients. So factor that in to your overall ROI with using them.

If you can push down their page using Joshua's advice, as well as make your own phone# more visible, that may mitigate things. So you should certainly test out your phone# in your title, just like elocal is doing.

On the other hand, I find it surprising that there are many people actually using that #. In addition to your site ranking #1 with a prominent #, your ad should also have a call extension. And does your knowledge panel show up? That should attract more eyeballs than anything else.
 

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