Does the idea of making specific local pages for your website make sense? If you have a local business – or are just marketing one – it might make sense for you to try getting a higher rank in organic SERPs through the use of local pages. Today will be looking at four points that will help you determine whether or not local pages can improve your search rankings.
While we will be looking at local pages, we aren’t so much talking about local rankings as you may think about them; things like Google Map rankings and local map pack results that appear when searching. We’re talking about local pages themselves.
The Four-Step Process for Determining if you Need Local Pages
We’re talking about more traditional, 10 blue-link rankings for local pages, which are pages from national and multi-national businesses that are specific to a certain location. Some examples for this would be things like the Chicago jobs page on a job website. Such a website may not own physical buildings in the area but may have pages about that area.
We may see something similar to a flower delivery website, used cars, and lots of other kinds of verticals. A local page is a tactic that most kinds of businesses can adopt. Let’s look at the four-step evaluation that can help you decide if the tactic is right for your business. The first step is more about keyword research than anything else.
1. Understand your “Money” Terms
We’ve not focused on this much because it should be something you’ve already done. You should know what your “money” terms or key transactional terms are by now. No matter what happens, you don’t want to find yourself creating lots of different location pages for a lot of different keywords as this would just bloat your website. You should choose just a few key transactional terms to make local pages from.
2. Categorize Keywords As Implied, Direct, or near Me; Also Log Search Volumes for Each Category
Perhaps your core head term is “marketing jobs”. From there, you want to know the implicit, explicit, and near me, variations for the keyword and their volume. “marketing jobs” is itself the implicit version of the keyword. If you were to search that for yourself right now you’d find a plethora of local search results as “marketing jobs” is an implicitly local term. Lots of terms are currently making use of local data to improve their rankings, which can affect how you want to go about rank tracking, but there will be more on that later. What matters are the implied terms like “marketing jobs” and “marketing vacancies”.
Next comes the direct local terms. Those are terms that include a location such as “marketing jobs in Chicago” or “marketing jobs in Queens”. Try to keep things simple, as there’s no way to get complete coverage for lots of different locations. You want to get a rough idea of the places you should focus on.
Lastly, there are the “near me” terms. Not many people will be searching for SEO jobs near them specifically. The volume for this kind of search differs depending on verticals. A food delivery service, for example, will get a ton of these “near me” terms. Who hasn’t searched for restaurants and take out places near them?
3. Take a Look at SERPs to See How Specific Local Pages Rank
Now that the keywords have been categorized, it’s time to see what kind of results you will get four different kinds of keywords. This is because you will want to create local pages if they work for you.
Let’s say that you searched for marketing jobs and saw that there was a result for Marketing Jobs in Chicago from Indeed.com. This would be a local page, as they are a national business but this page is specific to an individual location (Chicago). You might also see a page for Marketing jobs from Glassdoor. This would be a national page as there’s nothing in the result that signifies this is a local page.
You may even find results for local businesses. They may have their own brick-and-mortar locations. If you are going to get lots of this kind of data, when and where you mention locations, then you may want to categorize those at scale instead of going through them individually.
If you can see a location in the URL or the domain or a website, then you are dealing with a business that is local. If you see the location in the URL but not the domain name, then you are dealing with a local page.
4. Compare Results and Choose Where to Dedicate Resources
You can basically categorize the results at scale. Then you can create a chart of the rankings to see how they stack up. We recommend using a CTR curve that you would be happy with. Take a look at the example curves on AdvancedWebRanking.com and similar sites.
Once again, there’s no need for this to be incredibly precise. We want to get a sense of what would be worth investing time and money into. You’ve got implied, direct, and near me keyword groups. You also have local pages, local businesses, and national pages results types. Now you just have to work out the visibility for the different categories. Maybe you’ll find that direct terms are the ones worth building local pages around, or maybe it’ll be implied ones. Either way, you’ve got the information you need and can go from there.