If you used the code in our last post on Schema for Multiple locations then your are well on the way to ranking well in each business location. Today I will show you how to really nail your SEO strategy for multiple locations.
Why is it important to optimize for multiple locations?
- Search engines like Google love location data when ranking websites.
- People often include the local town name when searching for a service or product.
- For many products or services, (e.g. a plumber), customers will always want a local provider.
- It is almost impossible to compete and rank well without having local optimized location and product pages.
How to optimize your website for multiple business locations
1. Organize your website structure and hierarchy to reflect your multiple locations
Your website must have a dedicated section for each area served. In the simplest scenario, your navigation menu would have a "Contact us" or a "Store locator" section with a sub menu linking to one dedicated page for each location.
For a more sophisticated and comprehensive approach, you should consider having a detailed section for each location. This would include pages for each service offered in each individual location and information specific to that location (for example a local blog or news section with links to local relevant news-worthy websites).
2. Create town/city landing pages optimized for each business address
It’s virtually impossible to rank well for each of your target markets, unless you create content that is optimized specifically for each location. As a minimum (and we have seen this technique work time and time again in less competitive business sectors), create one locally optimized page for each business location as follows:
Business name, town 1, region 1
Business name, town 2, region 2
Business name, town 3, region 3
Ideally each page will be unique to that particular branch or store and have locally optimized company information; opening hours; photos, videos or other media; social networks; staff; addresses and maps; all specific to that location. The more specific you can be about the business the better. Note that changing just the town name in the title and otherwise identical pages is not enough!
3. Get your schema.org set up correctly for multiple location
Once you have created locally optimized content for each business location, it's time to put the icing on the cake with multiple location Schema.
Here is some complete, ready to use Schema Markup for multiple location businesses using Organization and subOrganization markup. Make sure you incorporate this code into your website structure to benefit from enhanced business listings in search results.
4. Create and optimize a Google My Business page for each location
One of the most effective ways to increase your company's visibility in each town you serve is by completing and optimizing your company profile on Google My Business. Ensure a standard naming convention for each My Business profile, such as "Company name - Town 1, Company name - Town 2, etc."
Google My Business can increase your local visibility in 4 ways:
- Each location will be included on Google Maps
- A My Business listing linked to your website is a major search engine ranking factor.
- Inclusion in local listings block when a user searches for a local product or service.
- Hugely improved branded search that will include photos, opening hours and reviews (see below)
For best results, ensure you fully complete your listing for each company, list your services offered, add opening hours, upload attractive photos, and curate your customer reviews.
5. Hundreds of branches? Use a database approach to save massive amounts of time
For large national businesses with lots of branches in each town and city, it can be a good idea to resort to a database approach whereby each location has a record in a database - Excel is a good choice for this as it is widely available in every company and anyone can use it. Any good web agency will be able to hook the database up to your website so that each location has a dynamically created web page.
6. BONUS TIP - when you need to go that extra mile!
If you are in a competitive industry you will need to cover all bases with your local SEO to compete. Here are two excellent checklists:
The key to managing multiple locations is treating each location individually, without spreading your resources too thin. Aim to create unique, locally optimized pages for each location with as much information specific to that place as possible. Every business and industry is different. Your results will depend on the competition within your business sector at a local level. If your competitors have local pages, you will have to go one step further to get the results you want. I would really love to hear if you have successfully optimized a multiple location website. If you need any help with your optimization, please get in touch - we will be glad to help.