SEO Questions Answered by Marketing Expert Sandy Rowley

Is it easier to rank for some keywords over others?

Yes it is!

SEO is very competitive. Businesses in each city know how important it is to position their website in the #1 position for their products and services. Each clamoring for the top position. Some keywords however are easier to target than others. The goal of most small business SEO marketing plans are to find those hidden jewels (keywords) that are not as competitive, but have plenty of search traffic. Use these long tail keywords to rank your website in Google.

How does the Google search engine decide which website will rank #1 for a particular keyword?

Google uses artificial intelligence named Rank Brain to automatically keep track of what a user (person) does while using the Google search engine. RB (Rank Brain) monitors how well your website provides engagement and information for their users.

An example of how RB determines what pages from a website should rank #1 in the search results:

Suzy goes to and searches for ‘

Things To Do in Reno

Google displays a list of websites in the paid and free clicks section of their search results.

Suzy scrolls down and looks at a handful of search results and determines from the words used in these search results, which will probably be the closest to what she is searching for.

things to do in reno

*How to increase the chances that your website listing in Google gets the lions share of clicks?*

Once she decides to click on a search result, Google keeps a note of this and then follows her actions even closer. What happens next on her journey to find something fun to do in Reno tonight.

After she clicks onto the listing, she notices that the website is easy to navigate, she also sees that there are a number of things she can do tonight. She then starts clicking around in this website. She even finds an art class and decides to sign up to join this class directly on the site.

These actions tell Google that the page on this website is a relevant match for the keyword phrase ‘Things to do in Reno’. So, if this trend continues, where other users find what they are looking for on this site, chances are, this website will continue to hold their #1 position for this popular keyword.

What does Google think of SEO experts and the service that they provide?


SEO experts

What Are Some Things That Could Cause A Website to Lose their #1 Rankings?

If enough people went to Google and searched for ‘Things to do in Reno’ and clicked on the same website, but immediately clicked on the back button, this would tell Google’s Rank Brain AI, that this website or page on this website is not a good fit for that keyword phrase and over time, this website or page on this website would start to drop down to the 2nd, 3rd and eventually to the back pages.

Looking for some quick answers on SEO? Check out this SEO infographic.

Is there a way to outsmart my competitors SEO rankings?

Yes, yes there is. In the world of Internet Marketing there are the good gals and the bad guys. One SEO expert will promise you the highest rankings in Google for almost nothing. Or worse, sign you up for a long SEO contract and hope you never notice the fake traffic that they paid to go to your website to inflate your Google Analytics stats. These guys focus on the quick fix solutions, the dazzling sneaky SEO tactics that may work in the short run, but will most certainly cause a great deal of harm to the clients website rankings.

Then you have the good gals, the ladies who dedicate their time, energy and expertise to work closely with her clients, making sure that all the t’s are crossed and all the I’s dotted to the exact liking of the Google search engine. These hard worker bees deeply care about their clients success, and take it personally when their clients outrank the bad guys.

How does the average small business know who is who in the online SEO world?

It’s easy, you check out their Google, Facebook and Linkedin Reviews. If their reviews are from real businesses like you, then your golden. If the reviews are oddly enough from other SEO agency’s or Marketing Firms, something is off. Why is that? Think about it, why would your competitors, especially in the SEO industry, give their competitors 5 star reviews? It is a Ponzi scheme to fool the review site. See, the more 5 star reviews you have on your profile or listing, the higher your website will rank in LinkedIn and other review sites. These SEO experts all hop on this bandwagon of fake reviews because they are not direct competitors, so they all agree to give each other fake reviews to beat the system.

Also keep in mind the adage, “If its too good to be true, it probably is.”

I have had new clients send me their login information to some humongous SEO corporations dashboard only to learn that the SEO corporation did nothing, absolutely nothing for this small business SEO, but charged their credit card $99 a month for a whole year!

SEO should be a customized solution for each website. A one size fits all mentality is a big warning sign to run the other direction. There are hundreds of factors that determine whether a website will be ranked #1 or on the last page of Google search results. Even websites in the same industry. No two are alike, ever.

Is all of this necessary? Seems like a lot of work?

The short answer is of course, don’t be silly. The full answer is, it depends. Some industries are just too saturated for a small company to stand a fighting chance. Some keywords and keyword phrases will take at least 2 years to rank organically in their market or city. While, others can rank within 2 weeks in the #1 spot. An experienced and knowledgeable SEO expert will be able to give you an honest answer before signing you up for their services. Although they cannot look into a Google Crystal Ball and give you exact dates, they can give you a good estimate of the time it will take them to get the job done.

What if your small business wants to knock the local leader off their throne in Google? What if that competitor is doing all the right things with SEO?

This is where we get to the good part. The part that gets my blood pumping and lots of creative ideas flowing. A good, solid challenge!

The first step to take is to do a full SEO audit of your competitor’s website as well as your website. Why?

A full technical SEO audit includes analyzing the structure of the website, as well as a list of the top development errors and broken links.

Any errors that we can find with an audit, will be one more item that we can do better with your website.

Next step is to devise a custom SEO Marketing Plan for the next 3, 6 and 8 months. Assess what content is working for the competitor, then use this data to create more engaging and useful content. Maybe we create a customized calculator, or we create a video series… the goal is to assess your competitors CTR (click thru rate) and their bounce rate, then improve on those numbers.

SEO in a very competitive market requires more than building backlinks and creating articles. This is why it is super important to know what your up against, if you can actually accomplish your goals or maybe need to utilize other online marketing tactics to reach your goal like PPC (pay per click), Guest Blog Posts and other outreach techniques.

seo professional


Can I just pay a local SEO expert to do this for me?

Yes! That’s the whole point of this article. One is to show you that yes, you can and need to have a solid SEO plan of attack in place for your business and Two, that you can do this work yourself, heck, I can even create the SEO plan, come into your office and train you and your staff how to implement the work. I even can check in twice a month to make corrections if needed.

If you are way too busy to do any of those items, I can totally take charge and make things happen for you as well.


SEO looks like it is too competitive, what else can I do to position my business in Google?

You might be surprised at what hidden gems, or keywords that I can dig up for your company. Say your target keywords are super competitive and you have a smaller budget and resources of time. I can look for related keywords and long tail keywords that are easier to rank for and if targeting enough of these long tail keywords, can send just as much traffic if not more traffic than the big, competitive keywords your top competitors are dominating in.

I have clients all the time use this strategy. I even use this myself, even though I dominate all of the top SEO related keywords in my industry and city, I still target the long tail keywords as well.


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Have more questions on internet marketing? Post your comments in our free SEO Marketing Facebook group here to have them featured in this post.

Learn more about SEO Expert, Sandy Rowley…here.

Top SEO and Digital marketing strategist, Sandy Rowley, continues to lead the way in Northern Nevada for those looking to rank their websites high in search engines.

Her down to earth attitude has won the hearts of many local Reno businesses as well as world renowned brands.

“She is candid, funny and really knows her stuff.” Brittney S. Hi Line Travels

“With Sandy’s expertise our company sky rocketed up the search engine list. Her professionalism, SEO skills and customer service is second to none. Thanks to her the Pure Glow Salon has experience a substantial increase of web hits, phone calls and most importantly dollars to our bottom line. If you are looking to do the same for your business the only option is Reno SEO, Marketing & Design.”

Greg Enholm