SEO for location specific personalized search – How to deal with varying search results?

Personalized search results have always been a puzzle to the SEO experts. This factor which none but Google has control; has left many internet marketers clueless on choosing the right keywords for getting local visitors to the website. For example, let’s consider the case where we are promoting a “home loan calculator” website which serving Singapore audience. I have seen SEO experts add the location tag to the target keyword. For instance, let the target audience be Singapore. You are offering a Singapore home loan calculator website. Your choice of keywords would be “Singapore home loan calculator”, “Home loan calculator Singapore” etc. The keywords would carry the Country name and you believe that it gets maximum local coverage. If so, look at the below statistics from Google adwords tool. The generic keyword “home loan calculator” has 5 times more local searches than the keywords than the ones attached with the Country

Keyword-ideas-for-local-search

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It is obvious that someone already in Singapore is not going to search as “Singapore home loan calculator”. They would just Google “home loan calculator” and thanks to Google local specific personalized results, they would be presented with home loan calculator websites from Singapore. In the comparison below, you would find entirely different bunch of search results appearing for the same keyword “Home loan calculator”. The search results vary entirely between India and Singapore

comparison-of-serach-results

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So the key to success in local SEO is to make Google bots identify the location of your target audience and display your website in the search results even for the generic keywords. This can be achieved easily with a simple setting at Google Webmaster tools. This is sensibly called “Geotargeting”. There is an option within webmaster tools under site configuration > settings where you can specific the geographic location of your target audience. Once you set the location, your website would appear in search results even for generic keywords when someone searches from the target country. Your website would also appear if someone outside the target country searches with the keyword tagged with the country

Simply said, in the case of “Singapore home loan calculator” your website would appear if:

  • Someone searches for “Home loan calculator” from Singapore
  • Someone searches for “Singapore home loan calculator” from the rest of the world.

If you have local target audience and have not used this setting yet, visit webmaster tools today and make the change. By setting the location in webmaster tools, you can let Google know that you are targeting a local audience. Now to dominate the local search results you can make use of regular SEO services such as local business listing.

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