So for a client, we have keywords that make him available to anyone anywhere. Not only can he do his consulting over the phone, but he is also often flow to the city to provide training and seminars. He does most his work in cities not his own.
So now we have an example of a client that needs to target every city but at the same time isn’t in any of them.
Well first thing to think is “craigslist” and the local tree structure of the site. Our goal is to make the site has region and local sections and have one inside the other so that it has single pages that seem to serve only one region.
Biggest mistake of the novice SEO is to target multiple keywords on a single page that conflict with each other. If you are my friend who wants to build a Charlotte power washing website for his small business, but also offer, decks, painting, roof cleaning and other outdoor services, you have to seperate the topics.
The seperation needs to be either seperate sites that drive traffic to one site so each can be on a specific topic, or you must break the site up into sections dedicated only to each item. He wouldn’t want the power washing section to have a side bar that says “need you house painted” and links to that section. If you want to be a site that is an athority on one thing lets find a way to target one thing per section.
Well for my clients consulting services, the regions were the target.
This is where we need some very creative PHP and MOD rewriting.
This means we need to code pages that can represent hundreds of towns and cities and at the same time lets rewrite the URL’s so the site appears to have section dedicated locally to each.
Here’s how my slippery SEO mind went forward.
- Generated a list of the 4 biggest cities in every US state by population.
- Created a PHP function that recognizes which STATE level page the person clicked the link to view and when it receives the request for TEXAS it returns Fort Worth, Dallas, Austin and Houston as 4 variables.
- Generate keyword content and google maps for Texas as a whole using the keyword Texas and a seperate variable “lone star state” that is also selected in the nickname column. It adds these terms inside the templated body of the pages, Alt tags and meta tags. It also uses “TEXAS” keyword keyword in the title, and heading tags.
- Within the page it also links to the 4 cities within texas it just set to variables.
So now I am on the page website.com/region/texas/index.html and have links to pages of cities within Texas.
- Those cities are recognized as website.com/region/texas/houston.html – or – /fort-worth.html
- In the virtual structure we created with the MOD rewrite the regions/texas/ folder contains a texas homepage and 4 pages dedicated to texas towns. Each of thes pages have google maps locating the area, nearest airport to that town and keywords through the tags and page that are town or state specific.
All inside one folder named Texas, all containing Texas content and all created from exactly 1 PHP page. The same one page that creates the same folder structure and effect for the other 49 states as well.
So we created with 2 pages and a bunch of crafty PHP code, 250 pages that all target a state or city with unique content and a folder structure that makes it appear there is a folder seperate for each state.
He now is local in 200 places, and in two PHP pages we have keyword searches with 200 citynames and 50 state names where he is ranking on page 1
AND YES, I did this without a database. Normally I would do this with a database storing state – city – keyword relationships and an ID#. I didnt want an ID# in my URL and I didnt want to decode the link to call to the database by using the state or city name.
I wanted a nice portable all PHP solution that I can reuse on anysite with a simple cut/paste.