MLS – Why MLS Soccer Ranks Higher than MLS Board listings

Conduct a search on Google for MLS and up pops a number of major league soccer (MLS) websites.  The word MLS can mean a lot of different things to a database: multiple listing service, major league soccer, or even mass layoff statistics. One of the problems of competing for some keyword phrases in the rankings is that it increases the competition for rankings on those phrases. It’s a war between two completely unrelated topics and websites.

That can be confusing for a search engine like Google which does use some semantic processing of its database. They do try to understand what the searcher means by MLS however they’ve struggled with semantic indexing for a while and have waffled back and forth, while fiddling with other elements of their search algorithm.  Google will associate it with soccer, goals, replays, field, players and scores. Of course, that’s got nothing to do with real estate. Now Google can’t really understan whether the searcher is interested in major league soccer or homes listed for sale.  Therefore, sometimes you may want to consider this weakness or error in Google’s search algorithm by incorporating material associated with the other meaning of the phrase.

Here for instance, you can write about MLS soccer and  report on some games or teams and link to top sites about MLS soccer.

MLS Soccer or MLS Home Listings?

In the end however, Google chooses pages that have authority so an isolated page on your website is unlikely to have a significant effect.  MLS.com is a powerful website yet still doesn’t rank at #1 for the phrase MLS. That doesn’t make sense unless you consider that MLS soccer is in the news almost everyday and plenty of people are writing about the league in their blogs, twitter accounts and even facebook accounts.  They often link to MLSsoccer.com in posts or articles on their sites. These are not high quality links but they’re on topic and fresh.

MLSsoccer.com has 2400 backlinks while MLS.com has only 107 so you can see why MLSsoccer.com is the top site.  Still with only 107 backlinks, MLS ranks very well. It may not deserve to be on the first page of search results where it is at number 3.  MLSsoccer currently is ranked number one with the top news story too. If there’s lots of buzz about your site, it can help a lot.

North American Major League Soccer (MLS)

Top sites that cover MLS are MLSSoccer.com, MLS.com, ESPN Soccer Blog, and even the Seattle Sounders soccer club website. Google similarly can’t distinguish football from soccer, so you can again use semantic phrases if you like such as Major league Football.

Eastern Conference Standing

  Soccer Club PTS GP W L T GF GA GD Home Away Last 5
1 Philadelphia Union 28 18 7 4 7 21 16 5 5-0-4 2-4-3 L-T-W-T-T
2 New York Red Bulls 28 20 6 4 10 34 24 10 5-2-3 1-2-7 L-T-T-W-L
3 Columbus Crew 28 19 7 5 7 21 19 2 5-1-4 2-4-3 W-W-L-W-T
4 Houston Dynamo 24 20 5 6 9 24 23 1 5-3-3 0-3-6 W-L-T-T-W
5 Sporting Kansas City 23 19 5 6 8 24 25 -1 2-0-3 3-6-5 T-W-W-T-T
6 D.C. United 22 17 5 5 7 24 29 -5 2-2-5 3-3-2 L-T-T-T-W
7 Chicago Fire 18 20 2 6 12 20 25 -5 1-2-6 1-4-6 T-T-T-T-L
8 Toronto FC 18 21 3 9 9 17 36 -19 3-3-5 0-6-4 L-L-W-L-L
9 New England Revolution 16 18 3 8 7 16 24 -8 3-2-4 0-6-3 L-T-T-L-T

Western Conference

  Soccer Club PTS GP W L T GF GA GD Home Away Last 5
1 LA Galaxy 39 21 10 2 9 27 16 11 5-0-5 5-2-4 T-W-T-T-W
2 Seattle Sounders FC 38 22 10 4 8 32 23 9 6-2-3 4-2-5 W-W-T-W-W
3 FC Dallas 34 19 10 5 4 26 19 7 7-2-2 3-3-2 L-W-W-W-L
4 Real Salt Lake 30 17 8 3 6 23 12 11 6-1-3 2-2-3 T-T-W-T-W
5 Colorado Rapids 27 21 6 6 9 25 27 -2 3-2-5 3-4-4 L-T-T-W-L
6 San Jose Earthquakes 23 19 5 6 8 22 21 1 3-2-5 2-4-3 T-T-L-T-T
7 Chivas USA 22 19 5 7 7 24 23 1 3-4-3 2-3-4 L-L-T-W-T
8 Portland Timbers 21 18 6 9 3 22 31 -9 5-4-1 1-5-2 L-T-L-L-L
9 Vancouver Whitecaps FC 14 20 2 10 8 19 28 -9 2-2-5 0-8-3 W-L-L-L-L

Learn more about the real MLS here. Google’s indexing of its database is very complicated and often it is overkill. As an agent, you want the maximum exposure for your website so you should understand how certain algorithm components help or hinder your rankings and traffic. If you can find ways to maximize your real estate site ahead of some soccer club when a user searches for MLS, then you’re doing what you need to do to build your business.

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