SEO Updates November 06, 2020

It’s time for your info-packed SEO newsletter to kick off the weekend and keep you up to date on the latest news, SEO tactics, tests, and so much more.

We had an exciting week and you won’t want to miss a thing!

What Happened on the SEO Vault this Week

Deal of the week: 20% Cashback Local Weekend Sale

SEO Mad Scientist: More SAB Findings. Does the service area allow you to show in different local SERPs?

To your success,

Chaz and the Entire Team

FROM THE VAULT – Episode 61

Don’t forget The SEO Vault airs live on the Web 20 Ranker Facebook every Thursday at 4 pm EST.

? Google Short Videos Carousel In Search Results
? On October 28, 2020, Google misclassified some Google Discover data as video in the Performance report
? John Mueller: Google Cache Link Not Dependent On-Site Traffic
? Danny Sullivan: Why Rankings Go Up But Traffic & Clicks Down
And so much more!

Watch the Latest SEO Vault Episode here
Missed last week’s episode? Catch up with all the previous Vault Episodes here
You Can Even Listen here:






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SEO Mad Scientist

Hey there scientists!

Before we get into this week’s test results, let us tell you about a little disagreement we had in the laboratory recently

If you have been following the SAB tests, you know we have listings in various locations setup as SAB in completely different cities and sometimes states, from where they are located.

One test we have reviewed is a Miami listing that was piping in and out of maps while searching in Miami, FL, even though the listing is in Pennsylvania…

Chaz Edwards theorized that the reason the listing was given the opportunity to show in local maps was due to its service area being listed there, regardless of proximity.

Mike Milas on the other hand believed it was only showing due to the proximity signals we had built after the listing went live, mostly citations and submitting data aggregators.

Like most SEOs out there, even though we follow the facts, it’s easy to get caught up in speculation. There are so many variables in a test that it’s often hard to determine what EXACTLY caused any given response…

This is why single variable tests and multiple test results from the same test, are best to determine how something actually works…

Which brings us to this week’s test results. After reviewing the structure of the test and results, we believe definitely proves a SAB that lists specific areas of a service area, are given a proximity score based on geolocation, allowing that map to show in local search within that location.

We have multiple listings in our area that range from plumbers, roofing companies, and as you know, title loans. This test was repeated 3 times across two different niches, title loans and plumbing. Listing age ranging from 2 weeks to over 2 months…

If you aren’t familiar with the Hanover, PA area, or Gettysburg, they are smaller towns located about 40 minutes away from each other.

Because of their size, when searching for a service in maps, you often get a wide area shown on the map…

When searching for plumbers, while in Hanover, OR searching for “plumbers near Hanover”, the map is zoomed out far enough to show Gettysburg and vice versa.



Our test list is the NewDay Plumbers listing that’s showing in search when searching for plumbers while in Hanover, PA. The listing also showed for plumbers near Hanover terms regardless of location.

We chose the keyword plumbers for this listing as our GMB metrics indicated it was getting shown most for this term…



We then did a “search from location” using Bright Locals local search tool, and confirmed that we could not find our listing on any of the pages in maps. We also checked “plumbers near Gettysburg” while in Hanover and Gettysburg and found the same results, no listing…

We continued to check the listing for the next few days and did not see it listed in maps while searching for Hanover or for Gettysburg, but consistently showed when in Hanover or searching plumber queries with “near Hanover”.

It wasn’t until about a week after that, while reviewing the Gettysburg SERPS, we saw it pop up for our plumbers term while searching from Gettysburg.

Not only that but all search terms referencing “Gettysburg” also showed in the maps listings…


It took about 3 times as long for our Miami listing test to show while in Miami which we believe is due to the actual proximity signal.

When your listing is in maps, the map position is always zoomed out to include your actual listing location, even though you are a SAB and do not have a pin on the map…

This is why having the cities showing listings from the other city prior to running the test, is a good control to show that it is in fact the service area listed on the GMB listing that gives you the opportunity to show in the maps pages while in that location…

We believe these single variable tests are pretty definitive, but of course, we are open to new data.

If you have tests that show something different or would like to repeat this test yourself, let us know. We are always looking for new scientists to join our lab.

Just rerun the test and reach out to Mike Milas with the results to join the SEO Mad Scientists Laboratory…

And as always, until next time…

Happy Testing!





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