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JohnW
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Hi Greg,
We are getting off topic but for you…

1. Load Speed Tests
Page load speed must always be a secondary criteria in G. search results. If the info is irrelevant, inaccurate or out of date, it does not matter how fast it loads. The searcher won’t want it.

2. Social Media vs SE Search
Social media is another area of more hype than fact. You only have to run enough online marketing audits to see how much time and money is wasted on social media programs that do nothing.

Of course there are some winners. They depend on the comms objectives, the types of audiences, the type of industry/service, etc.

If auditing a business social presence, you only need to scroll down through the “likes” to see the same (irrelevant) names recurring.

3. How Long for New Site to Rank in Google?
It depends…

The usual pattern for a brand new website is for G to index a number of pages in days, if you notify G. via Search Console. Then G “drops” all but the site’s Home page. You can see this best with a Google “site:” search. Click through to the cached version of pages and you will find internal pages return a “404 file not found error”. After a period of time G will automatically re-add them to the index and rankings should return to “normal”.

Check out this video..
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Feb 2017: Google Fast Track Indexing Vs. Normal Indexing
“Google’s John Mueller in a video hangout last Friday at the 1:04 mark into the video addressed the common question of why does a page or URL show up in Google’s index for a couple days or so and then drop out, especially new URLs that were not indexed yet by Google.”

4. Ranking for 3 Keywords + 2 Locations
Your most complex question is saved ’til last…

SEs primarily rank the individual words in search queries, not exact search phrases. The word sequence in the query usually has little impact. What you need to do is define the individual words you want to target then structure your site and its content to score as many “ranking points” as you can for them.

Eg. For a 5 page website, you might target 15-20 different words. That site can then qualify for thousands of unique search queries.

How many you can rank top 5 results for will depend on the level of competition and whether you can out-think their SEO tactics.

I know you are in the Otways, Vic. Does that mean your client’s target locations are Vic country towns? If so, I’d be surprised if your client has much serious SEO competition.

Without any knowledge of the type of business your client is in, you might want to consider creating a search landing page for each of the two locations.

A page for each market location segment means you can focus solely on that location words and provide benefits and relevant info for your client’s potential customers.

You will also have a page that you can offer to other location based businesses who may link to your client’s site.

Content Examples: Clients in that one location, their reviews, testimonials, referrals, case studies, etc. The types of jobs/products provided in that location, etc.

It will be good if you can create a page of summary info that links off to separate pages containing more detailed info.

Search word ranking point scoring is largely being awake to the possibilities then racking them up across all sites.

Some Egs.
If the client is a plumber, you may want a site navigation menu item named, “services”. That means “services” scores points for being in all internal page links but you may want to include the words, “plumbing services” in all URLs of the pages in this section. And don’t forget breadcrumb trails on all site pages. Now you have another opportunity to score ranking points for “plumbing” and “services” on every site page.

Site-wide naming conventions for images and “alt” tags. Consider naming conventions for images and “alt” tags like:

Business name, location, client type or type of service.

If you link an image to another page, G. will recognise the words in the “alt” tag as link text. If you adopt a universal image and alt text naming convention this way, there is no way G can accuse you of keyword stuffing.

So, if your location landing pages are displaying linked image thumbnails and text sub-head links to various examples of your client’s work, customers, case studies, etc. you can work a specific location landing page up to score large numbers of ranking points for that location. You need to check out the competition but I’d be very surprised if anyone in a specific business category in any rural / regional town in Australia is operating at this level of SEO sophistication.

We could write a book on SEO for small business in Australia. I can only touch a few issues with very broad examples in a forum like this.

I’m retired now but PM me if you would like a general chat about SEO for regional business websites.