How To Beat A Local Event In Google Rankings

I’ve talked about this in a number of different posts about hyperlocal blogging.   This past week two great examples popped up I’ll share here.

The Scenario

There is a local event and people are searching for the event using “Google”   Really?

Local Event Sites Love Bling

Yep Eye candy rules in the world of event websites.   Most have no idea how to optimize for search engine placement.   They make it pretty.   If you ever find the site, it is pretty.

Your Open Door of Opportunity

  1. Write a short simple post about the event a few days (or weeks if it is a big event) before the event.
  2. Put the old Who, What, When, Where, How much it cost.   In the post.
  3. Create a good title tag. (Hint put the year in the title).
  4. Create a couple good keyword tags.
  5. Put all the keyword details in the Excerpt field.
  6. Link to the event website.

These are your six steps to search traffic on your blog for local events.

Examples of Bling without Zing

The Oktoberfest celebration

"oktoberfest-500-773" this is their title for the image

"oktoberfest-500-773" this is their title for the image

Great image don’t you think.   All the pertinent information is in this jpg file.   Except THIS IS THE ONLY PLACE IT IS ON THE SITE.

Notice the Times of the event. The Admission Cost, the sponsors.   All inside a BLING picture which GOOGLE BOTS CAN’T READ.

Put this same information in your post and you have more search able information about the event than they do.

Tucson Air Show

This one is a real killer.   It is an event that people look forward to for months, sometimes years, (it wasn’t held last year).   They search and search for details.   Times Dates, but it is very difficult to get any information about this event.   It is held at the Davis Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson.

First, They don’t call it the Tucson Air Show,   everyone else does, but they don’t.   They call it Aerospace & AZ Days.   Catchy title don’t you think. It just rolls off the tongue and is easy to remember for searching.

The only information about the 2010 event is in a .jpg file.   No text no words, no details.   Makes it really easy to find on the search engines.

Here it is:

AeroSpaceAZDays  Yep, this is it

AeroSpaceAZDays Yep, this is it

So what do I do?   How about write a post for “Tucson Air Show 2010” and provide the dates, the real name for the event and the graphic.

Bonus Nugget:

Remember when I said to put the year in the title.   I have a post for Tucson Air show 2007, Tucson Air show 2008, Tucson Air show 2009 and now Tucson Air show 2010.   Each still ranks high for Tucson Air show.   I go back to each previous year post and put the link to the new post at the top as an UPDATE:

When those posts are returned in the search results do you think it looks like I’m an ongoing authority about this annual event?

These posts are a service to those searching for information about your local events.   They drive traffic to your site.   They provide an opportunity for you to engage your community.   They drive traffic from Google to you.   That sounds like a Win/Win/Win to me.


  1. Dave, thanks for the reminder to add the “year” in the title. I haven’t been good at that but will make sure to do a better job in the future! 🙂
    .-= Rail Life´s last blog ..Light Rail brings RailGating to Tempe =-.

  2. This is by far one of the most important things to remember when delivering information over the web. I ran across this same suggestion when I was thinking of using an image for my blog’s title. I found that there are some clever ways around losing keyword content and still keeping images, but by and far it’s much better to present the information textually. And yes, adding the year is an extra bonus tip I forgot about. Thanks for your informative post.

  3. It is so great to have you as a resource. I learn more each and every time I read your blog. You have cut my learning curve dramatically.
    .-= Keahi Pelayo´s last blog ..A Jumbo ARM Doesn’t Look Good At The Beach! =-.

  4. This is a really great post. You just have to be really proactive and on top of things to make sites/pages for local events.

  5. James Boyer says

    Great ideas, I have blogged about local events before, but never gone back and updated old posts from previous years. Do you think it would be good to go back and update, as well as blog about it again and link back to the old post from the new post?
    .-= James Boyer´s last blog ..Gay Union County New Jersey Realtor =-.

  6. Hi Dave ~ This is super advice. And wow – those are some pretty big events to have such lousy search placement. Great idea to capitalize on that.

    I’ve been amazed at the number of hits I’ve gotten on some local event posts – fireworks, college graduations, a new store opening, etc. And it’s local traffic which is what you want of course – except in my case I get plenty of British searchers looking for info on graduation at Cambridge.

    .-= Elizabeth Bolton´s last blog ..TROMP – Cambridge Transportation Program =-.

  7. This post is as relevant today as it was over a year ago when you first published it. I am always amazed at the lack of SEO by event posters. Excellent tips!

  8. Good points. It’s funny how the people behind such a prominent event could overlook such an important aspect of marketing. Even putting the event name in the alt text would have been an easy thing to do.

  9. Thanks Dave for the info. I recently did just what you are saying when I promoted a local corn maize event. My blog post ranked higher than the events own website. During the event, on one day, I had over 4,300 page views. It was amazing! I learned that this was something I will repeat over and over again.


  1. […] Featured Hello there! If you are new here, you might want to subscribe to the RSS feed for updates on this topic.Powered by WP Greet BoxDave Smith over at Real Estate Blog Lab always has great Search Engine Optimization tips (i.e. – how to get found in Google!) that he shares, but I really liked this one:   How to Beat a Local Event in Google […]