Dumb SEO Questions

(Entry was posted by Jay Lo on this post in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, Thursday, May 2, 2019).

How to prevent regional pages ranked on other regions

How to prevent regional pages ranked on other regions SERP while we don`t have equivalent page on that region For example, if I have an en-ca page www.example.com/en-ca/pizza specifically for users of Canada, and I don`t have en-us page. How do I prevent www.example.com/en-ca/pizza ranked on us serp? I mean if I do have en-us page I can use hreflang to establish the relationship so en-us page will show up in US SERP instead, but in case that I don`t have en-us page, what should I do?
Thank you guys!
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Selected answers from the Dumb SEO Questions G+ community.

  • Dave Elliott: if there is no regional equivalent but Google thinks you are one of the most relevant results why would you not want to be ranking for it? Is it a product page and you don`t deliver there?
  • Jay Lo: Dave Elliott yes, so if we show them the page, it will be bad UX because the products are not available to them
  • Michael Martinez: So help the visitors from the other region get to the correct region. Don`t worry about keeping the page out of the search results. Focus on fixing the user experience.
  • Benj Arriola: Agreeing with everyone above. If Google thinks you should rank there and you do not want to, and you think it is bad UX, then inform the user well.

    My next statements are not about SEO, so it does not answer your question. But more on what you can do to maximize opportunities.

    You can add some messaging on the page that states our products are not available in the US.

    And if you want, you can do some IP/geo detection and only show that message if the user is in the US.

    Then to make the UX great, do you have competitors that are in the US only but not in Canada? Why not suggest other sites to go to if you have a US partner.

    Lastly, turn it into a survey for market research. Have an email form that says something like:

    "Sorry we are not available in the US. I wish you were in Canada, it would have been great. But if you wish we should be available in the US, tell us why by filling up the form below:"

    Then add a checkbox saying: sign up if you want to be alerted once we are available in the US.

    Then when this list gets really big, you will get an idea when it is the right time to start thinking about opening in the US.
  • Jay Lo: thank you so much for your advice! It`s very well said and insightful!
  • Jay Lo: thank you Michael! Make a lot of sense!

View original question in the Dumb SEO Questions community on Facebook, Thursday, May 2, 2019).

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