Staying on top of the ever-changing Google search algorithms can be a challenging proposition, but local landing pages can be a great tool to improve your natural rankings in 2016. If you know what local landing pages are and why you need them, you are already a step ahead of many small business owners.
Now that Google is customizing results based on companies’ primary addresses, it is possible that your website does not appear in your customers’ searches. For example, if you are located in a suburb, or your client is, a search for local contractors might only bring up those with the main city address. In order to be certain that your business has a presence in each of the towns and cities in which you do business, you must have local landing pages for each location.
What is a local landing page?
You may have heard them referred to as “city pages” or “service area pages.” Whatever name they go by, landing pages increase your company’s online presence. Landing pages are specially designed webpages that capture those who are searching for keywords relevant to your business in cities other than the one you are located in.
Since the Google search algorithm uses your company’s address to determine the area you service, your landing pages help to expand upon that. Therefore, you may be located in Chicago, but have landing pages for Schaumberg, Highland Park, North Chicago, or any other city that you do business in. Since your main webpage will not show up in a local search, you create a landing page that will.
Do I really need local landing pages?
Have you noticed a decrease in website traffic? Maybe you have had people who live in neighboring cities comment that they couldn’t find you online. These are your key indications that you absolutely do need local landing pages. You could be located within a very reasonable distance of the person performing the internet search, but due to your address and the way Google presents search results, your customers cannot find you.
What are the benefits of local landing pages?
Obviously the greatest benefit is that your clients can find you. Those prospective customers who are performing online searches and purchase research can find you. These are clearly important to your business.
An additional benefit to creating local landing pages is that you can customize the webpage for each local area. This allows you to develop a closer relationship with your customers who see detailed local information on your site. You establish yourself as an expert in your business and the local area.
Common local landing page mistakes.
The most common local landing page mistake made is duplicating content. It may be tempting to use website content that you already have and simply copy it for each location. If you change nothing more than the city name for your local landing pages, you may be doing your search engine optimization (SEO) more harm than good. The result could be that your company is ranked lower by Google rather than higher. Duplicate content is something that will quickly result in your webpage being penalized, so take the time to create unique content for each local landing page.
Another mistake that contractors make with local landing pages is assuming that they do not need them. You can list the areas that you service on your primary web page, but that does not guarantee that you will appear in search engine results for those cities.
Others attempt to minimize this problem by using their state, not city, as their location. While this may catch some results, it also may expand your reach further than you intend. People who are searching by city still will not find you, and Google automatically picks up locations by city, even when the person did not include it in their keywords.
Using quality landing pages resolves each of these issues.
What to do if you don’t know what you are doing
Whether you need two local landing pages or 100, we can help create, develop, and maintain these pages. Contact us today for a free consultation to find out how local landing pages can benefit your company or read more about our landing page program by clicking here.