For many businesses, having an online presence is crucial, as long as you are optimising your website to reach the intended audience.
For businesses that operate online – or where the location is not a deciding factor in influencing a purchase decision – optimising your website to reflect this will help you reach the largest audience possible; nationally or internationally.
However, it sometimes makes sense to optimise your website for local opportunities, especially where a local service is provided, or you have multiple brick-and-mortar stores.
By setting up dedicated local landing pages, you can make the most of local search and provide more concise information that will satisfy local search intent.
In this post, I am going to discuss how to set local landing pages, and how you can optimise them for best SEO performance.
The benefits of local landing pages
The benefits of local landing pages can vary from business to business. However, the fundamentals more or less stay the same.
Of course, one of the biggest benefits of local landing pages is an increase in local SEO performance.
Local keywords allow your business to be more competitive in the SERPs compared to general search terms.
For example, “eye tests” is a lot more competitive than “eye tests Leeds”, yet the latter shows a better search intent that is likely to convert to a lead or sale.
If the services or products on offer at each location vary, you can also specify this for each page and ensure visitors find the exact thing they are looking for.
Visibility in Google Maps
When users use a modifier query in their search, such as “near me” or a specific city or town, the SERPs are often modified to show a map pack. This puts a pin of each location on the map and can make you more visible to visitors.
Getting into these local map packs requires Google to understand your location, of which you can optimise for.
Having a Google My Business listing link to a specific landing page URL can improve your chances of being found and improve your online visibility – especially to mobile users.
Having local landing pages helps identify you to potential customers.
Whether they are using a branded search, such as “John Lewis Leeds”, or an unbranded search such as “coffee shop Leeds”, either can end up bringing in visitors to your brick-and-mortar store.
However, measuring the number of conversions from an online search to actual visitors into store is somewhat impossible.
But it does mean that you can identify and measure the search queries people use to find you and compare which locations are more popular than others.
However quickly the world may be moving to online businesses, there are just some services that are impossible to do over the internet; eye tests, haircuts or car MOTs for example.
But what you can do with these landing pages, is allow visitors to enquire about services or book appointments via a contact form, so that you have less need to rely on outbound marketing, such as cold calling.
Customised offers and deals
Very much related to my last point, local landing pages also allow you to promote any offers or deals you have for specific locations.
These can be vital if you are running a franchise business, where one location may wish to promote a particular offer or promotion as opposed to all locations.
This is also useful if you want to increase cash flow to a poor-performing location, or you wish to counteract a new local competitor, for example.
You can do as much as you like to make yourself visible online, but brick-and-mortar stores are social proof that you really do exist.
Demonstrating to online visitors that you have real people in real locations that can help or assist, can be the final hurdle that is required to engage with your business.
How to optimise your local landing pages
Now that you know of the benefits of local landing pages, you just need to optimise them so that users – and search engines – can find the required information.
Once you have a template for one landing page, you can deploy it multiple times with the relevant local information.
Optimising Meta Data
Starting with some local SEO basics, optimising your metadata is the first place to start.
This means using your location within the URL, page title and H1 heading as a minimum.
For example, SALT.agency has three physical locations, and we have optimised a landing page for each location. Below is a screenshot demonstrating how we have optimised the title, URL and H1 in the below image:
To see the page in full, check out SALT’s Leeds page for an example.
Optimising on-page content
You can’t solely rely on optimised metadata for strong organic performance. You should also consider adding on-page content that talks about the products/ services that you have on offer, considering what keywords people are likely to search for.
If you run a local flower store, explicitly stating that you sell flowers and related products will be useful if you have used your brand name within the metadata.
Consider both users that know of you by your brand name and who search for unbranded search terms also.
Rather obviously, it is vital to include information about your local store.
Sometimes this is referred to as NAP – name, address and phone number.
Not only are these incredibly important for users, but also search engines – especially when this is the information that is displayed within the local map packs.
But don’t just add the bare minimum.
Consider adding additional information – such as opening times, directions, parking, accessibility or anything else that is of value to the user. Make sure you give them no doubt when it comes to wanting to visit!
Once you have optimised your landing pages, you need to give a call-to-action (CTA) for the final step in converting users.
All CTAs should be obvious and require minimal user effort to fill in. Make sure that these forms work, and that you will contact them as you have promised.
When you consider that local search is made predominantly by mobile users, you want to make sure that your site looks good, loads quickly and is most importantly functional on mobile.
From a user’s perspective, make sure the content is displayed logically, loads within a reasonable amount of time and that any interactive elements – such as map or contact forms – actually work!
But from an SEO point of view, you need your website to be crawled and indexed by mobile-first crawlers for it to be visible in mobile SERPs. So, ensure both your mobile and desktop versions are optimised for their respective crawlers.
However much demand there may be for online businesses; there will always be a need for local, in-person services.
If your business relies on local business and local visitors, making sure that you can be found is crucial for success.
This doesn’t matter if you have one location or hundreds of locations; you should have landing pages to target local search intent.
Landing pages don’t need to be complicated, but they should contain all the vital information needed about your business, making sure they are useful to users and search engines at the same time.