Last Updated on December 4, 2013
This is part two of a three-part series on creating the best business location landing pages for your website. Local search ranking factors put a strong trust signal on the location information your own website provides and we’ll explore how to best create your landing page design, experience and data for single location businesses, multi-location businesses (two dozen) and mass location business that need a location finder or geo-search tool.
Multiple Location Business & Web Design
This post is aimed at a business that has anywhere from two to maybe a dozen or more physical locations.
You have enough locations that users need to know and understand which location is closest to them, but the number of locations you have isn’t in need of a “locator” feature on your website to look-up locations by zip code, city or keyword.
Our first post looked at how to build the best location page for your business with just one location, but now you need to multiply that to meet the needs of all your locations as they are each unique in their location and likely even other important content elements.
Common Landing Page Pitfalls for a Multiple Location Business, 2-12 Locations
- All of your locations on just ONE page. This is THE big pitfall I see over and over again with multiple location businesses. The website has just one “Locations” page that then has multiple offices and their information on just one page. We’ll break it down further below, but each location needs it’s own page whether you have two locations or 200.
- Too much work (too many clicks) for the user to get to their best location. Usability and ease is at the forefront here. You want to get the user to the location page they need as easily as possible. Can you get the user to a specific location page in one click? Can you get them there multiple ways, navigation or through page content? You need to be able to answer YES!
Creating the Best Multiple Location Business Page and Experience On Your Website
In my first post I gave a list of content types to build into each of your location landing pages, so review that if you need to know the content elements you want to include. In this post we’ll focus on how to best structure and create a simple but informative location page experience for users and, of course, the search engines.
A. Each location gets its own page. The page name is specific to that location, the URL is specific, the business data (hours, address, email, phone, etc.) is specific to that location and on and on. Turn each page into the most authoritative and trusted information source for that location.
B. Build simple and solid location information structure. Create a locations landing page that serves as a high level locations menu to offer users and search engines easy, high-level location information and crawlable links into the specific locations pages.
C. Share content and information that is unique to that location. If you have a pizza place with six locations, chances are the menus are the same for each location, but many other pieces of content are different. Build out these pages with content specific to just that location. Here are a few examples to get you started:
- The physical location, nearby landmarks, neighborhoods/cities and directions
- Where to park
- Exterior, interior and other photos
- Staff contacts information
- Staff favorites, tips and recommendations
Google’s Matt Cutts has stated before that even a few distinct sentences are more than enough to avoid duplicate content for location pages.
D. It’s not about the start, it’s about the finish. One of your top website goals is to get visitors to your location pages, so focus on getting them there, not where they have to start. I’ve had many a business owner tell me that including locations in the navigation as well as the main content areas of the website feels redundant. It’s not. It’s about offering as many solid inroads to the final destination as possible.
Utilize your main navigation, drop down menus, home page content, sidebar content on internal pages and footer content to make getting to the right location page easier.
The example home page below shows how all seven locations of this auto body shop are available in multiple areas. Let the user choose their path, don’t force them into yours.
E. Location page best practices. If you need to review all of the content and technical needs of a great landing page, see the post on single locations businesses. You’re just doing this for each location you have.
Good Examples of Websites With Multiple Business Locations
Lakewinds is a natural foods co-op with two locations and a third soon to open. The location pages are reachable through the main navigation, drop down menus and the footer. Each location page features a map, store video, interior and exterior photos, hours and contact information.
The Lakewinds site was built using responsive web design, giving it a great user experience on tablet and smartphone devices as well.
With seven locations, Pizza Luce provides easy access to their unique location pages through the main navigation, drop down menus, locations landing page and the footer. Each location page offers the contact info, directions, map link, the GM’s contact info, exterior and interior photos, hours and more.
LaMettry’s seven location pages are reachable from the main navigation, the drop down menu, the home page content and from the locations landing page. Each location page contains specific content to that location like location photos, Google map, hours, business information, corresponding towing service, certifications and that location’s staff.
Next: Business Locations With Dozens to Hundreds of Locations
Our next post in the series will look at businesses with enough locations to need a “store locator”-type feature that allows a user to search for the nearest location by zip code or city keyword. While this type of location search can be helpful for users, we’ll look at what else you need to do to ensure your maximizing your local search presence with the search engines. Read Part 3: Mass Location Businesses With Store Locators
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