We recently did a post on search engine optimisation for local businesses in which we discussed the strategies a local business can employ to optimise their website in-line with the current local search trend. It’s time now to take a look at how a larger website targeting local traffic search can optimise their site in order to capture the local search traffic, without owning the location itself. The types of websites that might want to optimise for local results includes accommodation providerslocal business directories or a large chain with many locations. As you can imagine, Google Maps results are flooding the the page with location-based search queries which is proving to have a negative impact on websites like these. No need to worry though, here are a few tips for optimising your site for local search.

Local SEO for National Websites

  1. Ensure your page structures are optimised for the name of the business and the location. Your page title, meta data, content and headings should all reflect the property your are optimising for on each page.
  2. Apply Google’s rich snippets for local search Rich Snippets for Local Search markup to your pages in order to be identified as containing information on a location. The first that you should apply is the html markup for organizations. This demonstrates to Google that you have specific, detailed information relating to the organisation, which will help to pull your content through to the “Details” section that sits on a Google Places page.
  3. Add reviews to your website. As part of the process of allowing organisations to be reviewed on your website, ensure that you add the html markup for reviews. This will allow Google to identify the reviews within your website and in the same fashion as point two, allow them to pull your reviews on to the Google Places page, which will return another avenue for you to receive traffic.
  4. Finally, after adding the correct html markup to each of your pages, you should submit your site to Google Local, just to speed up the process.

These improvements are rather small in the scheme of things (with the possible exception of adding reviews) and can bring large benefits to your overall SEO traffic. Whilst optimising for local search aims to land results on Google Places pages, I can’t help but think that there would also be some further SEO benefit that comes from Google knowing that you’re an authority on a business.