The Ultimate Guide to Optimizing Your Local Landing Pages
In a time where consumers can easily search for nearby businesses using their phone or desktop, it’s especially important for businesses to invest in local landing pages. If you own a business with multiple locations, you might already have local landing pages for your stores or offices. But are you using those pages to their full potential?
Local landing pages, or local pages for short, are web pages for every store location. They are important for brick and mortar stores with multiple locations, or for service-based businesses that want to inform their consumers about the geographical areas they serve.
The challenge of creating an effective local landing page may be daunting — especially if you have a large number of locations, but this blog can help! Within the next section, we’ll dive into why your multi-location business should create local landing pages.
Top Benefits of Local Landing Pages
- Organic search optimization: This is the main reason to create local landing pages. Well-designed landing pages will surface on search engine result pages (SERPs) for local searches that contain terms relevant to your business. Organic results carry more authority with consumers and are more likely to lead to conversions than sponsored listings. What’s more, a top-performing local page linked to your Google My Business (GMB) profile helps you rank even higher in Google Maps!
- Promoting unique content: No two locations for a chain or franchise business are exactly the same, and local pages provide a great opportunity to showcase the differentiating features of each of your locations.
- If you have a service-based business, you can introduce your staff members, reviews, and services, as well as specify the service area you cover.
- For chain businesses, unique content on local pages helps those pages stand out in search. Consider staff profiles, local links, and other differentiating content.
- Lead generation: Integrate contact request forms, appointment scheduling, quote requests, a click to call button, and other features to turn your local pages into conversion opportunities for your business.
- Reputation building: Consumers place a high value on reviews as a source of information that helps them make decisions about who to do business with. You can ask for and republish your own review content right on your local pages, giving consumers honest feedback about your business, and even better, providing Google with additional content that can really make your pages stand out in search.
- Increasing your customer experience: Adding services right on your local pages like Uber or GrubHub can boost conversions and make it far easier for customers to transact business with you.
Now that you’ve learned some of the benefits of local landing pages, let’s dive into some tips and tricks for creating effective pages from an SEO perspective.
6 Ways to Optimize your Local Landing Pages
1. Incorporate keywords into the title tag of the page
Title tags are critical if you want search engines to understand what is on your local pages. A title tag is an HTML element that identifies the title of a webpage. Space is limited; Google indexes only the first 50 to 60 characters of a title tag. Include your specific business name and location, as well as the most important keyword you want to optimize for.
- If the keyword is already in your business name you don’t need to repeat it:“Build-Your-Own-Pizza in Anaheim, CA”
- If it isn’t, you’ll want to add the keyword separately:“Giuseppe’s — Pizza in Anaheim, CA”
Action Item: Think about what your customers are searching for to find your business, whether it’s “In-home caregiving services in LA county” or “Healthy vegan and vegetarian cafe in Orange, CA.” Compose your landing page title to reflect that intent.
2. Check image, alt text, and titles
Alternative or “alt” tags should be applied to all images on your local landing pages. Alt tags provide text descriptions that help search engines understand the content of your images. When you use a tool like WordPress to add an image to a web page, the tool will typically auto-generate a title tag based on the filename of the image. But alt text is often left blank, so unless you supply a description, a simple copy of your title text will appear. Ideally, the text in each alt tag should be different from the other tags on that page. Optimized tags should describe the image accurately, and if relevant, should include keywords you are trying to rank for.
Action Item: Add relevant alt tag content for all images on your local pages.
Ex. “Cappuccino and mocha espresso drinks served at Cafe Dupont in Anaheim Hills, CA.”
3. Ensure all URLs are clean
Landing page URLs with code-like text like www.yourbusiness.com/pasadena%20 can lower your ranking. Having a clean URL — meaning a URL that uses natural language and is fairly easy for humans to read — is important for search ranking for two reasons. Clean URLs meet Google’s usability standards and also provide a better user experience for your customers by giving them an idea of what content they can expect from your page.
SEO-optimized URLs for local landing pages should not contain:
- The text “index.html,” once common on home pages
- %20 and other “special character” codes
- Uppercase letters
- Numbers like “404” or any numerical sequence that would be meaningless to your page visitors
Action Item: Check through your location pages to confirm that all URLs are clean. Note the ones that need to be changed or edited. If necessary, modify your URL templates to ensure all URLs are human readable.
4. Standardize your name, address, and phone number
Local pages are the calling cards for your local stores, so make it easy for consumers to get the information they are looking for at a glance. The information on your local landing page has to mirror that of your Google My Business profile. If the information is different, you risk confusing Google’s search index and your page visitors as well.
In addition, make sure your name, address, phone number, and business hours have the appropriate Schema markup. Schema markup helps search engines understand the content on your pages and can also help your content get indexed for voice search. Google’s Structured Data Markup Helper tool is a great entry point if you’re new to Schema markup.
Action Item: Double check to make sure all locations’ addresses, phone numbers, and store hours are up to date. You don’t want to give your consumers the wrong information!
5. Optimize for mobile
57% of users say they won’t recommend a business with a poorly designed mobile site. In fact, Google’s “mobile-first” index may already be treating the mobile version of your site as the primary version for search indexing purposes. For these reasons, your local landing page should display correctly on mobile devices. Responsive, fast-loading sites are the best from a mobile perspective, but don’t just rely on responsiveness. Test your pages on iOs and Android phones and make any necessary changes to improve the user experience. Text should be large enough to be readable, page content should format itself neatly within the confines of the phone screen, and navigation tools should conform to the needs of mobile users.
Action item: Check to see if your website is mobile friendly with Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test page.
6. Fast loading time
Did you know slow load times can negatively affect your online revenue? Think about it: consumers nowadays are used to having everything they want instantly; they will go elsewhere if your website takes too long to load on mobile or desktop.
Action Item: Google’s mobile speed testing tool, powered by WebPageTest.org, provides a good indicator of the overall speed of your site. Check your speed and review the recommendations for improvement.
To recap, a well-optimized local landing page should include:
- Location hours, including special hours for holidays or hours that may differ for specific departments
- A map with a pin indicating the store’s location
- A “get directions” CTA button underneath the map
- Nearby locations information about this location including name, address, and phone number tagged properly with Schema markup
- Photo content can be used to showcase the store itself as well as the most popular products or services
Keep in mind, however, that a local pizza restaurant will display different information compared to a local gym or clothing store. Each business is different, but here are some of our recommendations.
Now that you have a good understanding of some local SEO basics, let’s start optimizing your local landing pages! Before you start, think about what information you want your landing page to display. Don’t forget: You should be writing for your target audience. Think about what would appeal to your ideal reader and what information they would find interesting and useful. Depending on your industry, there may be different products, services, features, and other kinds of content you’ll want to showcase on your landing page.
While managing local landing pages across 100s or 1,000s of business locations might seem challenging, SOCi is here to help! SOCi Local Pages allows your multi-location business to take full control of 100s or 1000s of customized, responsive local pages or sites that deliver a consistent brand presence and improve local search visibility.Experience branded local pages that are fully responsive on any device and are built to meet your unique business needs, whether you’re a multi-location brand or multi-family marketer. Select from multiple template options that can be customized with banners, image galleries, products, social feeds, and more.
Best of all, limitless branded local pages can be deployed in less than two weeks. Additionally, you can make real-time updates to local page and website data, in just a matter of minutes. Elevate your local pages, increase conversions, and win local customers with SOCi’s local pages. For more information on SOCi Local Pages and how SOCi can help your multi-location business dominate the rest of its localized marketing efforts, request a demo today!