Bob was a self-made millionaire 2 times over. We'd been in a business networking group called LeTip for many years. He owned the largest tire and auto repair shop in Los Angeles. We had coffee a few times, and Bob explained to me how he made his millions. He had worked in the tire industry for a few years as a young man when he purchased the company he worked for. He spent the next decade building the tire shop into one of the largest around.
He did so well in the coming years that he sold his auto and tire repair shop in his early 30's and retired a millionaire. He started spending most of his time golfing and traveling. Soon he became bored because none of his friends or family had the money or free time to join him. As a result, he would often spend his time in foreign lands and on the golf course alone. That's when he started a new business, built it from the ground up, and became a self-made millionaire once again.
I couldn't help but notice that his auto repair shop’s website was outdated. I asked him a couple of times if he'd thought about rebuilding it or if he was interested in trying search engine optimization, PPC, Local SEO or other types of online marketing. He always rebuffed my ideas. After all, he was the self-made millionaire twice over. What advice did a relatively inexperience business owner have to offer him?
Ultimately he was stuck in his ways. He was still fixated on sending out postcards and other physical mailers. Who could blame him? They worked for him for years. So I gave up and continued to bring my vehicles to his shop for repairs and new tires. Sadly, many years later, Bob got sick and passed on his business to his grandson.
His grandson was an intelligent and extremely motivated young man in his mid-20's. His ambition was impressive. You could almost smell the fire in his belly. While his 4 siblings went off to college to become attorneys and doctors, he was more interested in being a business person.
Sensing a new opportunity, I asked the grandson if he was interested in growing his business by increasing his search engine rankings. He quickly replied "yes" and signed up for one of our monthly search engine optimization packages.
We immediately went to work and quickly ran into a devastating roadblock. The website was built on a template shared by hundreds of other auto repair and tire shops. This made it impossible to update anything on his site except for his blog. Search engine optimization requires updating certain parts of a web page, including title tags, H1 tags, alt tags, and 11 other elements. But we were unable to access these elements of his website so we were stuck.
When we learned of this terrible situation, we contemplated calling to tell the Grandson that we couldn't help them improve the rankings and search visibility for their auto and tire shop. In a company brainstorming session, we discovered that they had some significant citation consistency issues. They'd been in business for around 4 decades. During that time, they had multiple business names, addresses, and phone numbers. In the SEO world, name, address and phone number are referred to as "NAP".
These NAP citation consistency problems were causing their business to have far lower Google Maps rankings than they should have. The reason citation consistency issues cause problems is because when Google and other search engines see different business names, addresses, and phone numbers, they lose trust in a business. They don’t feel confident sending people to the wrong place.
Since we couldn’t update their website, we started correcting all the inconsistent directory listings, also called structured citations, to improve their NAP citation consistency. Since they'd been around for so many years, they had well over 200 citations.
It took us many months to get all the citations exactly consistent. As we corrected their citations over time, their local rankings grew. Their auto and tire repair shop went from 24 number one rankings to 84 number one rankings. They also went from 31 rankings in the 2-5 position to 65 rankings. Their rankings in the 5–10 position rose from 4 to 33. The chart below shows their explosive growth in #1 rankings as the top-10 and top-50 rankings. They experienced a 340% growth in 2 years.
Our efforts for this family-owned tire and auto repair shop paid off big time. The Grandson called me into his office and explained to me that since they hired us, their sales increased by over $800,000. He explained that although the increase in sales was not completely because of our SEO efforts, it was a large part of it.
This is one of my favorite customer success stories. It demonstrates the power of never giving up. It also highlights the importance of good research. If my team hadn't thought to review their citation profile, we may have cancelled our campaign for them and missed out a big opportunity to help a local family-owned business.
To this day, we still can't update their website. I can only imagine how much more their business would have grown if we could have.
Robert Portillo, founder of Nimbus Marketing, and his family.
Robert Portillo is the founder of Nimbus Marketing. Nothing satisfies him more than expressing his thoughts well. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two sons. He can often be found at local farmer’s markets, hiking trails, and the beach. facebooktwitterlinkedinpinterest
Robert Portillo is the founder of Nimbus Marketing. Nothing satisfies him more than expressing his thoughts well. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two sons. He can often be found at local farmer’s markets, hiking trails, and the beach.