Are Dedicated Location Pages the Best SEO Option for SMEs?
Editor’s note: “Ask an SEO” is a weekly column by technical SEO expert Jenny Halasz. Come up with your hardest SEO question and fill out our form. You might see your answer in the next #AskanSEO post!
Welcome to another edition of Ask an SEO! Today’s question comes from Scott at London:
Are dedicated area/location pages still the best option for SMEs that want to promote their business/services outside their home location when they don’t have a physical branch in those other areas?
This is a really hard question to answer. It’s another one where there are two basic schools of thought, but they completely contradict each other.
Create City-Specific Location Pages
I’m not an expert in local SEO, but I definitely have a preference on this one that probably won’t surprise our loyal readers.
There are many local SEOs who have had a lot of success at this. They create an individual page for each city they want to be known in, and they write unique content about how their services work in all of those locations.
The unique content is really key here. The goal is to let customers know that you actually don’t have a branch in that area but that you are available online or in a neighboring town.
It can work well with services that people might travel for, like specialty hospital services, car dealerships, outlet malls, etc.
It does not work well for things like software companies, individual stores, or restaurants. People generally do not want to travel for these kinds of services.
Keep in mind, even if you are able to gain a ranking for a city-specific search, you will not be able to get into the local pack (the list of places and the map) without a physical location.
Since these local pack listings usually push regular organic listings down, it may not even be worth it to compete for that top “organic” spot. You should do some sample searches and look at the results.
Obtain Local Links
The other strategy that I strongly prefer is to obtain local links in…
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