Can my site rank locally and nationally simultaneously?
This was a topic of discussion recently.
The concern surrounded the idea that if the site is targeted locally that national organic ranking results would diminish.
For example, let’s say you have an eCommerce site which is designed to sell products throughout the US. It is nicely ranking for targeted keywords organically. People are purchasing products accordingly.
If you now build pages that target your local city is this going to cause issues with the success that is being realized?
Fortunately, the answer is a resounding no if you do it right. Let’s unfold the “why” and then talk about how to capitalize upon this for your own local business success.
Why Your Site Can Rank Locally And Nationally Simultaneously
Given that you have worked hard to build your national position means that you have pages dedicated specifically to that event. These pages are the ones that hold your national rankings.
Building other pages would only solidify your standing as long as they are niched to the topic you are dealing with. In-other-words, you would not want to build national pages which sell clothes and then create local pages about your plumbing services. What you could do is sell clothes nationally and they build local pages talking about your services as a Seamstress.
In the above example, it should be clear that your national and local activity support each other. Think of how this relates to your own venture and you can create a system of national and local pages that build upon each other rather than working against one another.
HOT TIP: As long as each section supports the other they can actually lead to better results as you build your page properties forward.
A Word About Pages Verse Posts
So far I’ve been referring to pages as what you would build for your site. If you’re using WordPress, which most people do, there is a better way than building everything upon pages only.
This is where the whole topic of posts come into play. Posts can be a huge asset to your local business. You’re about to find out why and how to take advantage of posts for your own local venture.
First, let’s take a look at both entities to understand how they should be used.
PAGES: These should be considered the heart of your site that everything flows into. They are the static component of your site which never changes. The navigation of your site should lead people to pages.
POSTS: These entities are considered the growing area of your site and Google loves it when sites grow. Your blogroll should consist of posts which link to pages when appropriate.
This internal linking from within your site is one way that you can gain power in the eyes of Google but my key secret is still coming.
HOT TIP: While building internal links also consider linking out to related external sources. Click To Tweet that are related but not direct competitors. To target a local area it is even better if you make these external links locally focused. Google will identify you even more as a niche authority in your local area as a result.
How To Subdivide National Verse Local Pages
Here is the secret sauce I’ve said is coming. As mentioned earlier, this entire thought process is built on WordPress concepts. If using a different system for your site the process may be entirely different or completely non-existent.
Another unique factor about posts over pages is that you can build categories for your posts. This can be a local business owner’s secret weapon.
Let’s say your home city is Spokane.
You want to rank locally in this city. Simply create a category titled “SPOKANE” and put content created related to that city within that category.
How To Create Categories In WordPress
Creating a WordPress category is relatively painless.
First, look at your resource options on the left side and under “posts” you will find the word “category” as one of your available options.
After selecting categories you will be taken to a new screen that allows you the ability to create your category.
Enter your desired information and select “add new category”. While you don’t absolutely need to complete the description part, doing so does provide a bit more SEO juice and only has to be done once. Upon completion, you will see your new category listing show up to the right of the form that you just created.
From this setting, you are able to make adjustments to the category information as desired. Now that your new category is created you can use it during the article creation process by looking on the right side panel of the article you are creating. There will be a section with the label of the category.
Select your category desired and publish when your article is ready. You will now have 1 article in your new category.
NOTE: There are other ways to create and use a new category. What I’ve identified in this section is the most common path forward. As you build your local business presence with WordPress, if you find preferred pathways to accomplishing this same process that differs from my instructions above feel free to use them.
Moving Beyond Single City Identification
We can take this entire process a step further to your advantage.
Neighboring cities to Spokane include:
- Airway Heights
- Liberty Lake
- Spokane Valley
Suppose you want to be found locally in the areas listed above.
HOT TIP: When it comes to Google Maps you need to rank within the city that your actual business is located within. Organic rankings are an entirely different matter.
From a local organic position, which takes up most of Google’s search results, simply create categories for each of the cities that you want to rank in. Once done start adding content to those categories and you can find yourself ranking within each city.
My Exact Strategy For Multiple City Rankings on Google
When building out a plan for multiple cities, I will do so by creating the first city category while identifying the keyword phrases that I want to be showing up within. Click To Tweet
After creating 3 to 5 articles based on city and identified keyword phrases I will then create the 2nd city category while rinsing and repeating the process.
HOT TIP: It is super important that these posts do not repeat content but rather are entirely different articles else Google may identify your work as duplicate content wherein you lose.
Concluding Thoughts About Ranking Locally And Nationally
All the momentum that you put into your local city rankings will increase the power of your national campaigns simply because Google loves to see sites that are continuously growing with original content.
It is my hope that the details shared above help resolve questions about how to build your national and local campaigns simultaneously.
Did I miss something?
Feel free to ask your questions in the comments below.
Do you have personal experience with this process?
I’d enjoy hearing about it in the comments below.
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