Do you hate that your website has to have the name of your city in every single heading? Do you find yourself wishing you could be more creative with your site’s copy, but feel stunted by the necessity of placing your geographic keywords all over the place?
You’re not alone. The effect that geographic keyword placement has on the flow and selling power of web copy has long been one of the biggest problems with SEO.
The Local SEO Change
Luckily, we may finally be starting to move away from that particular practice. According to Mike Blumenthal, the industry’s foremost expert on local SEO, Google Places now permits businesses to include descriptors in the business title of their Google Places listing. This means if you’re a digital advertising agency (as we are), instead of having “Digital Advertising St. Petersburg” sprinkled in H1s throughout your website (which we don’t), you can just skip that completely. Instead, you can focus on using copy to get your story out, while the Google Places listing acts as your geographic business driver for SEO.
I believe this is the start of a long-awaited split in digital marketing, where your website stands alone as an interactive brochure while the online map and listing profiles act as the SEO portal for keyword-specific searches related to your business.
For an agency that focuses on the digital aspects of brand storytelling (as Revital does), this it a welcome development indeed. It means we can use different tools to achieve the separate - and even occasionally conflicting - objectives of traffic generation on the one hand, and brand-building and lead generation on the other. We are now free to tell your brand stories in a way that reads and feels natural to your audience, without asking them to ignore awkward copy constructions that SEO has sometimes forced on us.
The problem with SEO, specifically local SEO, is that you must have the right amount of keywords on a given page in order for it to be effective. This wouldn’t be a problem if the world of SEO and Google rankings wasn’t so competitive. The search engines aren’t the problem here. They’re just working as designed, trying to find the information you need as quickly as possible.
So if I were you, I’d make sure your main keyword is located in your Google Places business title today.