Look, I’ll just be honest and tell you: servicing an area and trying to rank well in many areas outside the city you’re physically located in is hard.
Google’s stacked the odds against you from the outset. You must have one heck of a search presence to have a chance at outranking another business with a physical location in the area.
But take heart – all hope is not lost.
You can compete. Just be aware that it’s not easy. Here’s the general principles you would follow if you wanted to outrank your competitors in their home city:
You must attract links to your location-based pages. You want reviews from customers in these locations. And you want those customers to mention the city name in those pages.
Sounds simple to do, doesn’t it? It’s easy to understand, but difficult to execute in a completely legit, non-spammy way. Some companies do try to manipulate this by hiring people from India to post fake reviews (BIG mistake!).
You may achieve decent rankings for a while. But eventually Google will pummel you down.
Smart SEO companies have strategies to do this in a 100% ethical, long-term way that doesn’t cause rollercoaster-like changes in your rankings.
What are the fundamentals for ranking in local search? Generally, they’re this:
This all sounds like a ton of effort. And it is. Google wants only the best businesses ranking in each location. It doesn’t want companies just trying to climb the rankings.
So long-term, focus on building the best company you can. Then, use SEO to increase your reach.
It’s the ensures strategy for success.