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Old 06-11-2008   #21
Stugots315
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Re: Reach Local

Ya thats by design, they do not want you to have the keys to the kingdom so to speak, they are afraid that if they give you all the info that you will go do it on your own.

You should be looking at an SEM firm that is going to be doing a/b testing, conversion tracking for your ecommerce, cart abandonment rates, ad variation, basically everything that a true SEM company will give you. Reachlocal is really for a small business owner that does not have very complex needs, the product works well in those applications.
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Old 06-11-2008   #22
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Re: Reach Local

Jmandoo,

I'm curious... What type of metrics are you interested in knowing? You can always run google analytics in conjunction with our metrics.
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Old 06-30-2008   #23
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Thumbs down Re: Reach Local

I've read through a few of these posts and feel compelled to state our firm’s experience with Reach Local. Rather than force the reader to review this entire posting let me start by getting to the bottom line, I would not recommend Reach Local for anyone wishing to generate sales leads or actual revenue.

Our initial thought was to outsource our PPC campaign; we felt this wasn't our core competency and Reach Local would do a better job than we had. We did our standard due diligence for any 3rd party supplier and also interviewed their representatives in our office asking questions like:

Question: Could Reach Local’s reverse proxy support replicating SSL encryption?
Answer: Yes, that’s not a problem.
Reality: It took almost 2 months before this issue was resolved; ultimately Reach Local accomplished this task by using their own certificate to support the proxied SSL page.

Question: Would Reach Local be doing anything to negatively affect our hard earned organic PR?
Answer: No, Reach Local will not have any affect on page ranking.
Reality: Reach Local submitted their proxy site to Yahoo and our original site’s ranking dropped from #2 to #50 and I have spent a considerable amount of time getting us back on the first page at #8 and made Reach Local retract their proxy. Why they would even think to submit their proxied site to populate the organic section of any search engine still remains inexplicable to us.

Question: How many leads should we expect to reasonably get?
Answer: Reach Local presented us with a projection which stated we should expect to receive a minimum of 40 leads which could be directly attributed to them using their tracking tool. This was based on their market analysis with others offering similar services.
Reality: The first month Reach Local took over the campaign we received two leads neither of which was viable because Reach Local failed to implement the initial key words we had requested (see below). Moreover historically we could depend on 5 revenue generating leads from our web site and this all dried up as soon as Reach Local began to mismanage our campaign. The result was several phone calls and face-to-face meetings with our Reach Local representative to get us back on the right path 2 1/2 months into our 4 month campaign. We attempted to hold Reach Local accountable for the expectation they had set of 40 leads but were ultimately told by their representative these weren’t “real numbers” and if that was our expectation we should consider terminating the relationship, which we would have done except that this also meant abandoning our contractually obligated funding.

Question: Could we provide them with initial key words to avoid/facilitate their algorithms learning curve?
Answer: Absolutely, just e-mail those to us.
Reality: Two months after Reach Local took over the campaign their representative admitted that he failed to follow through on our request and never implemented our baseline keywords. He could not offer any explanation as to why this had occurred stating only that he was “sorry”.

At the end of the day our expectations went from expecting to see new revenue to desperately trying to maintain the original status quo. It was so bad that we just wanted our traffic to be what it was before Reach Local took over our campaign. What was more disturbing was our Reach Local account rep’s attempt to blame the poor performance on our website. This poorly thought through logic crumbled when we pointed out that it was a little late in the game to point to perceived deficiencies with our website. These concerns should have been mentioned before Reach Local set the expectation of 40 leads. Also, our website was already generating 5 leads per month so how can anyone reconcile this ludicrous statement…at minimum this should have been maintained not driven into the negative.

Suffice it to say we will not be renewing our contract with Reach Local. We’re going to shift our focus to organic and maintain our own PPC campaign…turns out; by comparison, we were the experts after all. I have a local guy that does reasonably priced SEO…we’re going to set an implementation plan in place to reach short terms goals ultimately culminating in something long term. We re-learned a hard lesson…in business there are no easy shortcuts. These guys sold us “magic beans”, do yourself a favor and don’t fall into the same trap. The real shame of it is that I still believe their technologies to be viable, but their support and representative have no clue whatsoever. At the end of the day technology is just an enabler; if your people aren’t competent then I don’t care how great your systems are.
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Old 07-24-2008   #24
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Re: Reach Local

Your points are dead on, I had a very similar experience. They claim to be the leaders in the industry but when you start asking some really technical questions they fold like a cheap tent. Your points are dead on, I would be very interested in hearing anyone from reachlocal try to rebut your post at the very least it would be entertaining.
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Old 08-15-2008   #25
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Re: Reach Local

I have my thoughts on outsourcing SEM........

Although I respect and believe that SEM firms typically have a clients best interest at heart, I believe you should consider the following points when oursourcing your local paid search:

-A company that offers natural as well as paid opportunity, not just domain proxy w/ paid search.
-Transparency in costs per click down to the individual keyword/click.
-Geo targeting of ads as well as negative keyword insertion in ad campaigns (ex: Arlington..... Arlington Tx vs Arlington VA, using VA as a negative keyword for clients focusing on Texas as well as GEO tarketing)
-No click upcharges (pay market price for all clicks) -remove the incentive to provide more clicks by focusing on conversion rates instead of CTR's.
-Ability to include clients in IYP's that offer better conversion rates than traditional search engines.
-Human editing..... routine meetings with clients to discuss goals, results, and optimization of your paid search portfolio vs a computer generated system.

Regardless of what a client decides to do, outsourcing SEM is a very wise decision for most SMEs.

Although the above suggestions are things the company I work for provide, I feel they are key components to the best SEM ROI.

Unfortunately most SEM firm sales reps are about as qualified at creating campaigns as patented computer systems and software. You really need the human touch and not a sales rep plugging data into a system. The campaign setup is only 50% of the equation... the other 50% is important and that takes place after the ads are up for 30-60 days.
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Old 09-09-2008   #26
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Re: Reach Local

jmink - I would be very interested in speacking to you about your services for my company. Please let me know how to contact you. Thanks
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Old 09-11-2008   #27
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Re: Reach Local

If a person really does not know which keywords are doing well for his/her website and a which strategy company is using for their website than i must say Real local is the worst choice. As client providing budget so he should be aware what is happening out there with website.
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Old 09-11-2008   #28
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Re: Reach Local

I just had a ReachLocal sales pitch and came out of it still wondering if they can help me. My understanding is that they have two primary services for my type of very small business that lives and dies by phone contact: caller tracking and ad optimization.

Although ReachLocal is geared toward optimizing phone contacts, I think that my handling of phone calls may be more effective for my business. When I get a call, I use the caller ID to do a reverse lookup. This tells me the registered name and address of the caller while I chat with them. I then use the name and address to look them up on the real-estate tax rolls for their county. This two-part process takes about 20 seconds. My customers need to be home owners, so this process qualifies the prospect. I always ask them how they found me, which provides the keywords that worked for them along with a story or two about all the searching that didn't work - very helpful. I also hear about YellowPages, direct mail, etc. By the end of the call, they're in my database and we have next steps planned.

The second issue is ad optimization. Right now I'm running about 900 keywords across four campaigns, six ad groups and twenty ads. I use very targeted geograhic areas employing AdWords' custom mapping. So far, only 8% of my calls are unqualified prospects (I have learned that some people call the number before they read the ad). Based on what I'm reading in this forum, ReachLocal may not be able to give me that level of ad/geographical granularity within my $1000 monthly budget. I would appreciate any more feedback on this issue as it applies to my case.

Last edited by extrapane : 09-11-2008 at 11:17 AM.
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Old 11-21-2008   #29
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Thumbs down Re: Reach Local

ReachLocal no longer has a leg to stand on.


They had 2 services that really made it stand apart from the competition: Proxy sites and recorded call technology.

What they are missing:

- Service that extends beyond Google and Yahoo, such as Superpages.com, Switchboard.com, and other directory sites not just the major search engines.

- Hands on Service and not just a sales rep that gets paid residual income on clicks to plug information into a computer system

- Transparent reporting on the true cost of a click on Google and Yahoo.....

I think of only 1 company that offers the 3 distinctive advantages above.

<----------------------------

I met with a client yesterday who has ReachLocal managing his SEM. Long story short he was pissed after I showed him his #2 page rank on Yahoo organic using the ReachLocal proxy site...... it wasnt even PPC! They could have taken the 30 minutes at his office to do the basic SEO that I did just by logging in the site and working on the sites page properties and other information such as meta-tags and keyword density etc.

Nope... all you get is paid search! Wooot woot.....

Local search is:

PPC
SEO
IYP/Map based search

not just PPC!

Last edited by SEM&YellowPageGuru : 11-21-2008 at 01:38 PM.
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Old 11-21-2010   #30
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Re: Reach Local

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjphilly1969 View Post
Does PPC really make a significant impact for small and mid companies in the local marketplace or is the drive for PPC being driven by the ones that sell it and make a profit from it?

I instruct my clients to hire a part-time college intern to blog and register their business for every free directory listing they can find and simply build a high quality web site.

Placement at the top of the organic search is just as valuable as paid placement and the ROI is much higher.

I see PPC as a lazy developers answer to optimization in what is for the most part an uncompetitive marketplace for well developed sites.
Philly it is 3 years on - do you still think ppc is the lazy man's way? lol
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Old 03-09-2012   #31
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Re: Reach Local

Quote:
Philly it is 3 years on - do you still think ppc is the lazy man's way? lol
More than 3 now. Do you think he quit? lol
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Old 03-09-2012   #32
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Re: Reach Local

lol... must have gone to traditional media
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