If you were to go to the most popular search engine on the planet, Google, and type in “SEO Dallas” what do you think would appear in the results? You might believe that only the best in SEO would appear at the top of the search results, and you may be on the right track…however…many of the top results are due to a dominating strategy that a lot of agencies don’t take advantage of.
The Power of the URL
You might notice that some of the highest ranking websites have the term SEO in them, in one way or another. If any of the marketers were establishing the dominance that the website has the potential for, they would definitely put the city in the URL. It is all about letting the search engines know that your website has the information that seekers are looking for. If the topics of the search are included in the URL, everything is good to go.
There are several ways that this URL can be of great service to search engine optimization. You don’t necessarily have to go out and secure a domain that includes all of the keywords, although it is effective. If the name of the business matches up with the keywords that the site is trying to rank for, it is even better however, a strategic SEO person knows how to get around details such as this.
One of the most effective ways to boost search engine visibility is to build landing pages that are specifically for the keywords that they are built upon. The landing page is also a solution for including keywords in the URL without having to extend the domain name.
For example, if you create a landing page on your site for SEO in Dallas and direct all of the inbound traffic for that keyword to that page you can take advantage of the URL advantage. You could create a landing page such as: “yourdomain/seo-dallas” and point traffic for that specific keyphrase directly to that page.
What can happen with this strategy is that you can have multiple locations for your services that can potentially show up in high places for different areas. Say you have an SEO firm in Dallas, Houston, Austin, and San Antonio.
What many companies do is have a separate landing page for each service area, but have the website structured with internal links that connect all pages together. What this means is you could potentially show up for:
- SEO Dallas
- SEO Austin
- SEO Houston
- SEO San Antonio
To take it even a few more steps further, if the company works on an international level you could have landing pages for multiple cities in multiple states across the country from Albany, New York to Eureka, California.
Of course, it will help to have a Google My Business account set up for every branch and have each branch’s URL stem from the GMB to the landing page it coincides with.
Local vs. National
Of course, if you simply type “SEO” into the search engine and hit enter the organic results are going to be different based on your location. However, if your SEO game is strong, you do have a chance at topping the search results in a greater part of the nation.
Wanna Know How?
You have to build tons of quality links back to your site that all have something to do with SEO or search engine optimization.
With local search results, you can tweak each landing page for whatever area to show up in local results due to geolocation specifics. For every city landing page, you have to include the address and other geological information such as a local phone number and cross streets. With the help of GMB and other local business platforms, your pages can be easily reached and presented to users within that general area.
When it comes to national searches, it is a little bit different. If you specify geolocation on the site, it may limit your visibility to that certain area. Also, with national results, you will always be competing with giants such as Amazon and other platforms that offer services or spotlight local businesses.
With national results, you will need a properly structured website with tons of inbound and outbound links and a solid cornerstone content piece that is written well enough to gain visibility in featured snippets.
The secret to national search engine visibility is to have your website as tight and flawless as possible with clear landing pages for every service that you have to offer. Each landing page has to have quality backlinks from websites that have high domain authority. Links about SEO should only go to one landing page about SEO, whereas digital marketing, search engine marketing, conversion rate optimization, and so on should each have their own landing pages with links about them directly to them.
Titles and Headings
Wanna know why so many websites fail to rank for popular keywords? Improper structure. Understand this, and you will understand the entire game. You can’t simply stuff keywords into pages and hope for the best. You can weaken the strength of your website just by attempting to use keyword stuffing strategies.
When you choose all of the pillar keywords for your particular website the best way to get results is to create a landing page for each pillar keyword and shoot for visibility from the landing pages as opposed to trying to show up in results for all keywords on your home page. Of course, your main pillar keyword should be the focus of your home page, but if you break up your service pages and main keywords into their own pages you will have much better results.
When it comes to titles and headings you do not want to overdo it. Use pillar keywords in the titles and headings of your main landing pages, but use long tail keywords in blogs, and cornerstone content pieces.
Your titles and headings should all be consistent with the keywords that you are focusing on for each page, not combined for the entire site.
For example, if your pillar keyword is “SEO consultant” your URL, page title, heading one, and content should all mention “SEO consultant.” Not to the point where you are blasting your keyword every couple of sentences, but where you are consistently making the reader, and the search engines aware that the page you are presenting before them is about an SEO consultant.
If you stuff variants of the keyword into all of the pages and all of the titles you will not only confuse your visitors but the search engines as well. Make it clear that your SEO consultant page is not the same as your “SEO services” page and that it is also different from your SEO campaign page.
Backlinks and Citations
While there are countless SEO experts that swear that every link that points back must be a “do follow” link or it is useless, this just is not the case. Although “do follow” links do carry a lot of weight if they are from reputable domains, the search engines still recognize any link back to the site as a backlink.
The search engines are a lot smarter than most give credit to. Every little piece of information that is available on the web about your business and the keywords that it is associated with are a vital component in search engine visibility. People may argue that citations are just as good as solid backlinks, but the truth is that both are even better.
The key is to make sure that you disavow backlinks from toxic sites before they have a chance to make your site look toxic as well. Staying on top of bad publicity is another key element of having positive visibility in search engines.
There are a lot of people out there that claim to be experts, and many of them are rightly so. However, keep in mind that when it comes to search engine optimization there is a lot of common sense that comes into play. Don’t overdo your keywords and don’t be afraid to use them either. Learn where the balance is by doing keyword research and continuing to make the changes necessary to keep up with the latest technology and algorithms.