I would like to optimize a website for its geographic location. In order to do so, I think I should preface certain home-page keyphrases with the name of the city. I’m wondering if I should repeat this practice throughout the website for better effectiveness, or would this be unnecessary? I’m also wondering please, what is the purpose of the Distribution Meta tag. Please let me know.
First up, you should be aware (or perhaps you already are) of Google’s new feature that allows webmasters to associate a web site with a region/country.
Regarding how best to optimize a web site for different geographic locations or languages, sub-domains seem to be the way to go, as recommended by Matt Cutts of Google.
But if you are only optimizing for a single city, you should treat that city as another keyword on your page. That is, don’t repeat it ad-nauseum, only where it makes sense to do so. I would recommend no more than 5 repetitions of a target keyword or phrase on a single page. If your whole site content is about the city then it should naturally rank well for city-related phrases anyway as people will be linking to your site using the city name.
Regarding the Distribution META tag, as far as I am aware it is not a valid META tag, is unsupported by any search engine and the myth that you should include one has simply hung around like a bad smell like the Dublin Core META Tags. Skip it – otherwise it will simply contribute to your code bloat.
Links are very important as well. You have to make sure that the anchor text states the geographic phrase that you are trying to rank for. Directories, blogs and forums are excellent sources of inbound links. Make sure that you vary your anchor text to bypass filters looking for SEO. Nothing looks more like spam than a website with the same anchor text linking to it a thousand times.
I always suggest people to build more backlinks (from quality sites) including geographic location in anchor. For example: “Printing service in Boston, MA”.
Other important thing is a local websites. Try to find local directories, web indexes, yellow books for submissions.
Here is a great example how great website does’t rank well when you type in Google their location: SEOmoz is one of the best SEO resources. They rank extremelly well when people are looking for general SEO / SEM information. But SEOmoz does’t rank well when you type “Seattle SEO” , “Seattle web marketing”, “Seattle website promotion” etc… SEOmoz just never use any Seattle keyword in anchor and mention that they are from Seattle from some pages only.
To me it’s a great idea and if you care to consider to post in blogs that are in the same regional and are linked to your city, it will give you visibility. Make quality content and users will go to your site.
P.S. Don´t make Spam Posts, because the users will give you bad “credit”
Best Regards From Portugal
A physical address including post code may be viewed as a trust factor.
If you are trying to optimize your websites for local distribution, I agree having the meta tag for local distribution helps. Also, remember that online directories are yellow pages. And yellow pages that are now online have places to describe your business AND people can write reviews. So in optimizing your site – be sure to go to the local phone directories and make sure you are listed correctly. Also, most people forget to use their phone number as a keyword. If you use it the Yellow Pages will index you. Lastly, make sure you are listed correctly in your local directories, you would be surprised how many people do not check their own data online. One quick way to do it – type in your phone number and see what happens. For a SEO client of mine – we did just that…and instead of her number coming up in Maui, Hawaii where I am located – Yahoo had her and all wedding planners in Weaverly, Alabama because who ever typed in the data – typed in the wrong area code….Once that got fixed, surprize, surprize – she started getting more leads for sales again…. Hope this helps. Lia B.
This issue is confusing to us. Besides making sure our city is in the footer and used in the content of most pages, we really are unsure what else to do. Our company is not in the US, but we do have most of our clients coming from the US. We would also like to grow our business in other markets besides the US.
Hi, I manage a website too and I almost never see junk remarks on your articles. How do you manage to stop it all? Does one just physically moderate all of it?
Good blog. Totally agree with him.
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Good blog! I really love how it is simple on my eyes and the data are well written. I’m wondering how I might be notified when a new post has been made. I have subscribed to your RSS which must do the trick! Have a nice day!
Nice Post. I think repeating META tags will result in less ranking than unique tags.