Location pages are a new necessity when doing SEO for local search.
When created, formatted and used correctly, they can be killer for your search engine rankings and traffic. Why? Two main reasons:
- They are a great centralized place to get all the local schema data search engines love onto one page
- It gives your users the information they are looking for which is a sign you are focused on your User Experience
So what exactly is a location page?
Simply put, it’s a web page dedicated to your location (or locations!) This is great for multi-location businesses and something large franchise businesses take advantage of already.
A location page contains all the information you want your customers to know about a particular store. If you run a services business or “service area” business, where your work is done primarily at your customers place of business or home this can work for you – skip down to Service Area Business Location Pages.
Use local schema markup to form the page and list your business location details. Online tools like Schema-creator.org can help you quickly build the correct HTML to add to your pages. An experienced local SEO company can also build the page for you.
Examples of details to include on your new page:
- Phone number
- Google Map
- Hours of operation
Next, you need some images. It’s important to optimize your images for local search and this starts with naming your images with your most important keywords. For your location page go ahead and include some imagery of your neighborhood or “hyper-local” area where your business is. What would help your customers find you?
Is there an interesting building near you? An historic landmark? Include photographs of whatever you think of and add to the page. Be sure to add some text telling your customers why that picture is important.
“We are directly across from the old public library!”
You get the point. One of my best tips when it comes to any SEO is when adding content to your site that seems like a search engine would want (e.g. images) do it in a way that is conscious of your customer as well. What the heck does that mean?
Example: When adding images to your web pages, yes make them search engine friendly but make sure the image impacts your user as well. Like above – we are adding correctly named, fast loading images of our location to our page but we are also doing it to make sure our customers can find us. Having directions is great, people may see them, they may not – but a picture of a familiar landmark can make a big impact when everyone sees it and says, “Hey, I know where that is!”
How to Create a Location Page Using WordPress
One great plugin we like to use is the LBC Location page plugin for WordPress. It lets you use the simple back end wizard to add things like opening hours, payment types accepted and more. The plugin creates the schema mark up for you.
You can test your page after you are finished adding all of the information by using the Google schema mark up testing tool located inside your Google Webmaster tools dashboard.
What if I have multiple locations?
Well, stay calm and start creating location pages! This is a great opportunity for you to “silo” your website. Start making your locations pages like this:
- Locations Overview w/ links to each location
- Location A
- Location B
- Location C
This allows you to start getting some great structure to your website. With your URLs looking like this:
What if I have a “Service area” business?
No problem – make a location page about the area you service! What neighborhoods are you frequently in? What office parks do you service? Again add some imagery of your city. The only part you will skip is the address and directions to your business. Other than that, go nuts.
Conclusion and Bonus Local SEO Tip
Nice little closing H2 there folks – had to get that last opportunity for a keyword in. Anyways – location pages make search engines respect you, know more about you and rank you higher. Location pages make it easy for your potential customers to find you and learn what they need to know. Location pages are a great page to include schema mark up and move your website into the modern search engine optimization era. Location pages are a great page to encourage your website visitors to bookmark because they probably will need this information again. Contact Us pages are weak and generally just include a form. Don’t waste time trying to rank your contact us page – create a sweet local SEO locations page and dominate the SERPs.
Oh yea, bonus tip: Want to show Google you care for your customers and city? Why not make a location page all about your town? Links to the local library website, top lawyers, top doctors, the best shopping plazas, directions to the court house etc. Let your potential customers know about other great businesses in your area that aren’t in direct competition to yours – who knows they may link back! Local bloggers may link to your new page as well – all the information their readers want in one spot.
OK – you get the point – location pages are awesome!
Do you use Location pages in your SEO for local search strategy?