Credit: Kelly Thomas Mango
In a recent article, we explored some frequently asked questions regarding how to rank for multiple locations even if you just have one physical business address. In addition to on-site search engine optimization, many businesses take advantage of several off-site optimization tactics to rank for more than one city.
Here are several off-site optimization techniques that you can implement today that will help your business website get noticed in search results for the locations you are targeting.
1. If you haven’t already done so, set up your Google My Business and Bing Places pages.
It’s important to note that you can only set up one page for your business, and it must have the correct address that matches the address on your website or it will actually hurt your SEO efforts. When entering your business description, add all of the locations you would like to include there. If you already have these accounts set up, modify the current description.
For example, if you are a Norwood, MA website design company, you could write a description like, “Providing professional, responsive websites for small businesses in Boston, MA, Norwood, MA, Framingham, MA and surrounding communities. Choose 3-5 of the most important areas you would like to include. Optimize this section not only with targeted locations, but also with your most valuable keywords.
2. Use a business citation audit tool like Aabaco Small Business from Yahoo!, Yext, or Moz Local – My Business Listing to review your current directory listings.
Modify the long descriptions to optimize for the locations you are targeting. Also, double-check that your business name and address are 100% consistent with the business name/address on your website.
3. Use Whitespark, Brightlocal, or another citation source finder to add your business information to the most relevant directories for your niche.
For details on how to find the most relevant citation sources for your business, as well as a list of reputable business directories that everyone should be utilizing, check out this post: Increase Your Business’s Online Visibility with Online Directory Submissions .
4. Check your website analytics.
Google Analytics provides the most comprehensive information, so if you don’t have it set up on your website, now is the time to get it set up. Once this is done, you can view your audience by location, right down to the top cities. This is handy to see what local areas your website visitors are coming from. From there you can adjust your strategy as needed.
5. Perform your own searches on Google Chrome, Microsoft Bing or Edge, and other search engines.
Which of your local competitors pop up for the locations you are targeting? Check out their websites and social media sites to see what tactics and keywords they are using to get noticed in search engine results pages (SERPS). You can get great ideas for your own strategy by seeing what works for others.
These five strategies, combined with effective on-site optimization, will ensure your business will rank better for the local areas you are targeting—even if it is a city or town outside of your physical address.
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