Fear of Local Landing Page

local landing pageA local landing page is an extension of the idea of geo-targeting. Creating a local landing page is an effective way to get local search traffic and more business. A local landing page is a great place to highlight your most important products as long as you do not make the page too crowded. Domains with local relevance linking to a local landing page can do wonders for local listings.

City or state included into your websites title tags, its another important factor for your local landing page is to have the city or state youre targeting included into its Title tag. Another use of a Local Landing Page is targeting key phrases that have little to no search volume, but when searched for are going to generate more potential leads than more general key phrases. 

Overcoming Your Fear of Local Landing Pages

When tasked with developing a set of city landing pages for your local business clients, do you experience any of the following: brain fog, dry mouth, sweaty palms, procrastination, woolgathering, or ennui? Then chances are, the diagnosis is a fear of local landing pages. But don’t worry! Confusion and concern over this common challenge have made it an FAQ in the local column of the Moz Q&A forum, and my goal here is to give you a prescription for meeting these projects with confidence, creativity, and even genuine enjoyment!Up ahead: a definition, a “don’t” list, a plan of action, and a landing page mockup.

Quick definition: What’s a local landing page?

Local landing pages (aka city landing pages) are pages you create on a website to highlight a geographic aspect of a business for its customers. Local landing pages are most appropriate for:

  • Service area businesses (SABs) that need to publicize the fact that they serve a variety of cities surrounding the city in which they are physically located. In this scenario, the goal of most local landing pages is to gain organic rankings for these service cities, as they’re unlikely to earn local pack rankings unless there is minimal geographic competition for the services offered.
  • Multi-location brick-and-mortar businesses that need to publicize the fact that they have more than one forward-facing office. In this scenario, the goal will often be to get multiple offices ranking in the local packs by linking from the Google My Business listing for each office to its respective local landing page on the company’s website. You may also achieve organic visibility, as well, depending on the competition.

Diminish your fear by knowing what to avoid

Knowledge is power. By avoiding these common pitfalls, you’ll feel confident knowing that you’re developing a new set of pages that will help your client’s website, rather than harming it.

1. Do not publish fake addresses on local landing pages.

Tell clients that PO Boxes and virtual offices are considered ineligible in Google’s guidelines, so it’s not a good idea to use them on the website in an attempt to appear more local.

Be especially cautious here if your client is an SAB and gives you a string of addresses. Of course, an SAB can have multiple legitimate locations (like a pizza delivery chain) but if it’s a small business, your due diligence is required to make absolutely sure the addresses are legitimate and do not represent your client’s brother’s house, aunt’s house, friend’s house, etc.

Look the addresses up via Google Streetview. Do you see residences, or even empty lots? Red flag! Let such clients know that Google can read street-level signage and doesn’t take kindly to falsified address information. Google understands that SABs may operate out of a single home, but operating out a string of homes may look (and be!) spammy.

2. Do not engage in creating local landing pages for clients who lack a reasonable amount of time to discuss their business with you.

A minimum requirement is that they can have a phone session with you for each city you’re going to cover, but a much better hope lies with clients who are willing to make an active contribution to the project. *More on this later.

3. Do not engage in creating local landing pages if you don’t have enough information about the business to avoid creating thin or duplicate content.

This is related to point 2. Writing a paragraph and swapping out the city names on a set of pages is not a good plan, and you’ll encounter this lazy scenario on countless local business websites. Don’t be tempted to go this route just because your client’s competitors are getting away with it. Properly view them as weak competitors whom you can surpass with a superior effort.

4. Do not create city landing pages if no one involved in the project (including yourself) can discover a genuine reason (apart from a desire to rank) to differentiate cities and services from one another.

Don’t create these pages unless you can honestly say that you believe they will be useful and interesting to the company’s customers. *Suggestions for inspiration to follow.

5. Do not stuff local landing pages with blocks of city names, zip codes, or keywords.

Google’s Webmaster guidelines specifically state that they do not like this.

6. Beware call tracking numbers.

If your client wants to use call tracking numbers, be sure you fully understand the risks and options.

7. Do not bury your local landings pages somewhere deep within the architecture of the website.

Link to them from a high-level menu.

8. Finally, do not build an unreasonable number of landing pages.

At some point in your work as a local SEO, you will be contacted by a company that serves most or all of a state, or multiple states. They will say, “Our goal is to rank for every single town and city in our service area.” If your client serves California, there are some 500 incorporated cities in the state, not to mention thousands of tiny towns.

Can you honestly build thousands of unique, high-quality pages?

With enough funding and a large staff of copywriters, this might be possible, but it’s going to be the exception rather than the rule for small-to-medium local businesses. It’s generally more reasonable to have the client designate their most important cities and target these first. Then, if need be, move on from there, provided that you can avoid all 7 of the above pitfalls in creating further landing pages. Recommending PPC for more minute coverage may be a wiser alternative to prevent website quality from suffering.

Sigh of relief! Now that you know the major errors to avoid, you can move forward with the landing page development project feeling confident that your work is going to help your client, rather than harming them. Gather that tension up into a ball and cast it away! Get more details and information here.

The post Fear of Local Landing Page appeared first on Stronghold SEO Services.

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