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I launched a new website a a few months ago, but I have not been able to get it to show up any higher than the 5th page on any searches that don't include the exact company name. There is clearly some large penalty against this site, I just have not been able to confirm what it is, or how to fix it.

I suspect this issue is that the client split his company so that there are now two websites that do business under 2 separate names out of the same building. His old website still SEOs well, it's just the new one that is doing terribly. Originally, the company provided all services under the business name Alternative Signs which uses the website https://alternativesigns.com/. However, the offshoot company, Sign Partners of Louisiana, uses the website https://signpartnersoflouisiana.com/, and the plan is to split up services such that one company handles local business and the other handles regional and national clients. The first company is in Suite C and the Second is in Suite D of the same building. I've never heard of this causing issues, but it's the only thing strange I can think about that is happening here.

These sites seem to SEO similarly in other search engines like DuckDuckGo and Bing, the problem seems to only effect SERPs on Google.

I've ruled out the following common issues:

  • Search engine visibility is enabled.
  • Headers and Titles are properly set.
  • Alt text is set on most images.
  • Google is not reporting any Mobile Usability issues
  • Load times are good (site uses a caching plugin)
  • It has a valid SSL
  • It's sitemap and breadcrumbs validate without error
  • There are no Manual Actions or Security issues listed against it in Google Search Console
  • The Google Business profile is registered and error free
  • Content is not stale: Site gets minor updates every week.

Sign Partners of Louisiana does not yet feature much in the way of links-backs or reviews; so, I would not be surprised if it ranked a bit under the other website in most cases at this point, but it's showing up way too low for relatively specific searches like "Sign Company New Orleans, LA" for me to think this is the problem.

So, does having having two similar companies in a different suite numbers like this negatively impact Google SEO, and if not what am I missing that is causing my SERPs to tank so badly?

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  • Does the local site have a Google Businesses listing for Google Maps? Apr 26 at 17:44
  • yes, both sites have registered Google Business listings
    – Nosajimiki
    Apr 26 at 18:18
  • Should you have a business listing for the national site? Aren't those just for local businesses? Apr 26 at 18:33
  • @StephenOstermiller No, they both install signs locally: they just target different customers. At least that is the end goal, dont really want to stop targeting national clients with one site until the other can actually show up in search results.
    – Nosajimiki
    Apr 26 at 19:36
  • I looked at the sites ... You do know that the older site has considerably more content than the newer site. So even if the new site were miles away the older site with more trust gained over time, and more content it would rank better.
    – Wayne
    Apr 27 at 0:52

1 Answer 1

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Many businesses exist in business parks, so address suite is very common if not the normal.

Local Search: expecting established businesses.

If i search for:

"1301 EDWARDS AVE, SUITE D" NEW ORLEANS, LA

I am only seeing one listing. But a search for ::

"1301 EDWARDS AVE, SUITE C" NEW ORLEANS, LA

shows two pages of listing including from the Chamber of Commerce.

The number of references to Suite C back up the fact that it is an established business with a long track record which should be listed as a business for local search. Failure to list Suite C would look like a failure of local search, as everybody knows there is a sign company there. Proven by the fact that there are two pages worth of links to that address linked to the business. The promise google made to its users is those proven business will be found in local search.

The benefit given to established brick and mortar businesses in local search is huge!

Search Engine user expectations

Suite D does not have that expected to show up when searched for yet.

Startup don't get the expectation boost. It takes time and they must play very clean as Google is forgiving of established businesses being less than perfect for their content.

National Search

National Sites don't generally need the local boost as their customers are not local. But establishing brick and mortar listing is always a good thing.

Filling out the Business Panel

Schema Markup using a json tag, can fill out the business listing. This may help in fast tracking getting the brick and mortar status. As you can add phone numbers to various departments etc. The more information the better. More information supports the premise that you are established ... But I've not specifically tested or read about others who have tested that it does in fact fast track the process.

For example you can add FAQ to the schema, although I would create a FAQ page to do that. FAQ would help once established is given for national listings.

There are lots of resources on schema, Below is one example. I don't think it is useful to list 10 examples ... so, if this example goes off line another can be used.

https://www.schemaapp.com/schema-markup/how-to-do-schema-markup-for-local-business/#:~:text=Examples%20of%20LocalBusiness%20include%20a,specific%20kinds%20of%20local%20businesses.

Side note the business plaza I'm in

The business plaza I'm in has three similar companies, in fact the plaza is a vertical market plaza for similar companies. When somebody moves in they don't get a boost because they are in the plaza but after establishing themselves they get the boost.

There are also two similar companies related to the vertical who have gone through the same process.

And there is a tax firm, who process would be the same although he is the only tax firm in the Plaza.

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  • While this did not answer my question directly, your mention of "Chamber of Commerce" did get me thinking that I did not make sure the client registered his business properly. I checked the Secretary of State business directory and looks like he registered both names to Suite C which explains a lot. Thanks.
    – Nosajimiki
    Apr 29 at 18:58

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