Over the years the SEOGuys have been approached on many Herbalife businesses wishing for us to perform SEO miracles on their websites. Until recently we had turned all way.
The reason for this is that our initial analysis of these Herbalife distributor websites were that they had many major problems with their site structure and SEO problems were not going to be easy or cheap to fix. The cost of the solution was prohibitive to the site owners who thought they had bought a turnkey website which they had to do little to in order to generate lots of money.
We almost turned away bodyshapeover.com for the same reasons that the site used to be well ranked to terms such as Herbalife, Herbalife distributor and Buy Herbalife but was now ranked almost nowhere these terms.
The initial enquiry came in and I sent off my usual polite but firm e-mail " sorry we don't do Herbalife SEO most often it's too expensive and to my surprise the replying which demonstrated to me the owner was a most different breed of Herbalife distributor prepared to do all it was going to take to get their site back on page one of Google for Herbalife. I did the initial analysis and was unsurprised to find a litany of problems.
· Their former SEO seemed to think paying Google's Webmaster guidelines was merely optional as opposed to essential to achieving long-lasting rankings. I don't wish to detail what these bridges were that they were serious and ago takes a lot of work to undo.
· The site had suffered from a it is not broken why fix it strategy it had been ranking well in generating large sales sometime so little effort had gone into making site more user-friendly, generating useful unique content… In fact the main problem was they took their eye off the game and was not until it was too late when Google had decided other site are better that the site owners realized this was most certainly the case.
So there is lots for us to do. Its Herbalife and somehow we have to make this site stand out from the many thousands of Herbalife sites in the US. That means an overhaul of the programming and content and we have to do some serious fixing of the existing link strategy that as of July 2012 whereon the case with a top-10 ranking recovery to the site to the term Buy Herbalife as well as other Herbalife related terms at our target.
Right now the site is not in the top 100 to any terms so it's all uphill from here.
The most exciting thing for us is that the client has another Herbalife site which has also been analysed and another SEO company is working on it to get the penalty removed. We are in a race to see who can achieve the most as quickly as possible.
So as of July 2012 let the games begin
After making some progress and seeing rankings return to an extent, we have been hit by the strangest set of terms I've seen placed on a franchise of distributor. Our client, A Herbalife Distributor is now virtually banned from stating on their website that that's what they are. That's right. This is no joke. They are not allowed to use the word Herbalife in the Page Titles, Meta Descriptions or H1 Tags. How on earth anyone will be able to tell they are selling Herbalife, I just don't know.
For Example? They sell Herbalife Shakes… so you'd expect they'd have "Herbalife Shakes" as the page title right? Nope. Herbalife head office, says no.
As a result? It seems pointless to try and keep SEOing the site. This rule only applies to distributors, not 3rd parties, so I am already seeing rankings being taken by directory sites, even competitors not even selling Herbalife.
Instead we are going to now be SEOing a Herbalife Information site to prove to Herbalife, what they are doing is foolish. They are throwing away their rankings.