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Not Ranking First For My Own Brand. Why?



5:36 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

I feel like I'm missing something important but non-obvious. Can anyone see the flaw?

Have a brand website. I have the domain {brand}.com. I rank #2 for my brand term just after some cheesy guy in Alabama who ripped me off a couple years ago ({brand}solutions.com). Should've trademarked the term; its a made up word I came up with a few years ago.

I've created a site that is well optimized (onpage) and makes reasonable use of the brand term int he title tag and pages. I've written nearly 100 pages of good quality blog content on this site, and I've even have 5 separate guest blog posts on highly visible tier 1 blogs which link back to my site (venturebeat, seomoz, sitepoint, etc).

According to SEOMoz's OpseSiteExplorer, my site is more powerful than the other guy on every measure (domain authority, etc). I've written to Google re-inclusion request and was told there are no manual penalties against me.

The only things I can point to as to why this guy should outrank me are (a) a DMOZ link and (b) a link from some buried .mil site which I know can be helpful. Again though, according to OSE, my site *should* be much more powerful. As for DMOZ, everyone says its not so important anymore but perhaps that's it?

Note - we're both PR2 as of the last update, with similar Alexa ranking, though mine is higher. Also, I've owned this domain name since 2001. The new competitor only entered in 2009.

Would love any feedback!



8:38 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

You seem to be arguing that your site has "better" overall backlinks than the rival site, therefore your site should rank higher. But the Google ranking algorithm may incorporate other factors besides backlinks, such as perceived quality of content, relevance of content, user behavior, un-natural backlinks, and possible over-optimization. So maybe you need to examine some of these other factors.


8:51 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

Well okay - how do I do that? :) I'm clear on a few of those but not others.

1. Content - mine is profoundly better on every measure.
2. Brand inclusion - name is well incorporated into conent, particularly homepage.
3. behavor - ?
4. Un-natural links - It should be clean but not point of reference. How to validate?
5. Over-optimization - surely not. I've made a point of using only good quality natural content. The page/site architecture is well optimized but again with emphasis on being natural.

so perhaps #3 and #4 can be more closely looked at ... what tools are good for that?


10:56 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Well it would require a lot of time for someone to write a full explanation of everything you should be doing. You're certainly not the only one here who is trying to identify the cause(s) of their site's ranking problems. I suggest that you read and study other threads on this forum as well as articles about these matters found on other sites.

in my opinon, the best "tool" for this type of thing is the human mind.


11:04 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Dmoz is powerful, i have around 7 to 8 sites included in dmoz and saw affirmative improvements. I think, you should just work on adding more content and good editorial links and since you claim your content and architecture is better, you will certainly out rank him soon.


11:14 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

Dmoz is an interesting one. I've read numerous people indicating most DMOZ links are worthless now since anything below level 2 is now a PR0. Its the case for most directories now in fact. And yet I see the same as you do - that some sites seem to absolutely benefit still from a dmoz link.

Well, I've been working on this for 6 mos doing precisely as you've suggested. I've received numerous good natural links, I have 100 pages of content where the competitor has 12. Losing faith the good ole content angle is going to help me much further here.

Perhaps I need to just pay someone to place me in DMOZ then. Hint? :P


11:19 pm on Jul 3, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

If Dmoz is worthless, then no other directory has any worth!

Getting into Dmoz is difficult, but probably you can counter it with Yahoo directory and Botw, i won't recommend submitting to both at same time though.

If you find someone who can place paid link in Dmoz, do drop me a pm.


12:08 am on Jul 4, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tedster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

I've read numerous people indicating most DMOZ links are worthless now since anything below level 2 is now a PR0

The focus on toolbar PR is an error, IMO - for DMOZ, Yahoo and other top-tier directories. The benefits are there, regardless of the toolbar.

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