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    Why Are We Ranking Page #1 for a Keyword with a Hyphen and Not for Keyword w/Hyphen


    Hi There!

    So I work in an industry where there are different conventions for referring to, searching on and spelling the industry name. In our industry, eDiscovery and e-discovery are both commonly used and accepted terms.

    We have a high-value piece of content that is targeted in the following way: "E-Discovery (eDiscovery): The Basics Guide" so it is more targeted at the hyphenated word but does not rank at all...like nowhere at all in the SERPs (not pg. 2, 3, 4, etc.)...for the hyphenated version, whereas it is page one for the non-hyphenated term.

    As additional pieces of context:

    -After we make an update to the targeted page, we typically appear briefly for a matter of minutes, hours, or days for the "e-discovery" term, generally in the same spot on page one as "eDiscovery." However, our ranking page always disappears shortly thereafter from just e-discovery and stays consistent for ediscovery.

    The above makes me think there may be a penalty of some sort but I don't see any manual actions in GSC, we don't engage in any black hat tactics, and our Spam score in Moz is very low (2/17).


    -In general, our site is more targeted at the hyphenated term and there are places where we rank in the top spot for both the hyphenated and non-hyphenated versions. For example, we rank in a top 2 position for both E-Discovery & eDiscovery software but do not rank at all for the broader "e-discovery" term.

    Any thoughts or ideas as to what is going on here and how we can potentially rank for the term "e-discovery?"
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    Welcome to SEOChat
    My guess about the sudden appearance is because of the new content.

    I assume this is Google. What does Bing show?

    Without doing an assessment, it may be the result of a simple understanding that the word can work both ways; for example e-mail and email. Google, for example, chooses to display the result as non-hyphenated.

    An assessment would probably give you a better idea of how your site is perceived. Google isn't always correct.
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    Originally Posted by engine
    Welcome to SEOChat
    My guess about the sudden appearance is because of the new content.

    I assume this is Google. What does Bing show?

    Without doing an assessment, it may be the result of a simple understanding that the word can work both ways; for example e-mail and email. Google, for example, chooses to display the result as non-hyphenated.

    An assessment would probably give you a better idea of how your site is perceived. Google isn't always correct.
    Thanks for the reply! Yes, I was referring to Google.

    In Bing, the page appears on page 3 for "e-discovery" and page 4 for "ediscovery" so it looks like it's showing them in similar spots for each variation of the keyword search.

    A few other interesting data points relative to Google's rankings:

    -I currently cannot see the page showing for e-discovery, in either my normal browser or incognito. It appears in position 6 for both on the ediscovery term.

    -Rank Tank's keyword tracker tool, which says that "Search queries are sent to Google from an internal Google Apps IP address with no personalization" shows us ranking in position 6 for both "e-discovery" and "ediscovery"

    -SERPs.com and SEO Book show us as position 6 for ediscovery but not at all for e-discovery

    Does that provide any more clues as to what might be going on? Thanks!
    Last edited by danpayne88; Jul 7th, 2017 at 11:57 AM.
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    Without knowing the site name, the content on the page, and how you're targeting the words, it will be difficult to determine.

    Provide your domain name as follows...

    domain space com

    If you don't feel comfortable posting in open chat, send a pm.
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    Originally Posted by KnowOneSpecial
    Without knowing the site name, the content on the page, and how you're targeting the words, it will be difficult to determine.

    Provide your domain name as follows...

    domain space com

    If you don't feel comfortable posting in open chat, send a pm.
    exterrro com
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    Hi danpayne86

    I ran a rank analysis to verify your rankings, and you are correct about your ranking issues



    I audited your site. I think it is a safe bet your problem is "Keyword Stuffing",



    There are other problems as well. You have opted to use canonicals to give preference to your pages in the follow instances
    Using rel=canonical to resolve this issue is not the correct way. You should be using url rewrites for this not canonicals.






    You may think this is a minor issue and in this one situation, it's probably ok. But here comes the but, right ?

    If you have made this mistake then I would say you have made other mistakes as well. Not trying to be rude, but just pointing out the problems you have to help you.
    Last edited by KnowOneSpecial; Jul 7th, 2017 at 03:48 PM.
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    As an additional point of interest your problem exposes in my opinion a failing in Bing's Algo.

    You can game Bing with keyword stuffing, as your site shows on Bing and Yahoo, ( I think Yahoo is still using Bing tech for search, I could be wrong ) and not on Google for e-discovery
    Last edited by KnowOneSpecial; Jul 7th, 2017 at 04:01 PM. Reason: spelling correction

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