Give Your Website Some Helpful Directions for Local SEO
Google’s ‘Venice’ update in 2012 went ahead slightly unnoticed and definitely not as talked about as many of their other updates. The change to the search engine’s algorithm affected many local businesses but there are a few easy steps you can take to help keep you ‘findable’ for local searches.
1. Create Local pages
If your business operates in a few different locations or serves different areas where people may be using search engines to find what you’re providing, it’s a good idea to create web pages that cater to each of these places specifically. Make sure to include the area name in easy-to-see spots, such as the page URL, title, in body copy and in a tag. But of course, make sure you don’t go overboard.
2. Make Your Local Pages Unique
It’s not a great idea to post duplicate content on each of these pages; changing only the place name. Try to vary it and keep the various information you wish to include specific, unique and relevant to that area. For example, include a quote from the manager of each specific branch, add information about the team and other local information; such as parking availability, how to find you and specific services this branch or office may offer that differs from other branches/offices.
3. Include a Map
If you’re using the latest version of WordPress, posts will allow you to pick your location. This is a great addition for your blog. If you operate in different areas and your company has a blog, make sure you request that your web developer updates your WordPress version correctly so that you can take advantage of this and start posting ‘for’ or ‘from’ the different places your services are on offer.
You can also include Google maps on the unique, local pages you’ve created. Embedding these is relatively easy to do and helps Google to recognise the different places your business serves.
4. Translate Pages for Local Languages
Rather than targeting different areas within the same country, you may be targeting different countries, territories or indeed just different nationalities who may be searching in their own native tongue. Having your website, or some web pages, professionally translated into local languages is another great way to let Google and your audience know that your relevant to them and boost your international SEO. It’s also excellent customer service; which most people will know creates not just customers, but loyal returning customers.
Overall, Google’s updates will always be brought in to make the search experience better for the user; you can’t go wrong if you are catering to their needs. Consider your local audience and what would be helpful to them and consider how difficult it would be for you to search for a product in a different language than you normally communicate through. Have a brainstorm with your colleagues and you may even come up with more ideas than we’ve listed here. As long as it’s customer focussed, it’s going to benefit you through search or through customer interaction.
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