Searcher location is influencing search results. This can be overcome only when a searcher manually changes the location in a country. This has resulted in local links gaining importance for relevant keywords.
The search result that you get depends on where your proxy is located. So for example you are based in Dallas, you are likely to get search results for the term you searched that reflect your location.
Now this can be overcome by adding city specific pages to your website. This helps you even if you have omitted reference to specific cities in your text on your website.
Local link building is crucial to make your web presence count. So, how do you get links that are locality specific?
The key is to factor in all cities in your country. However, some cities will influence neighboring small towns and counties. So target all major cities.
For example if you type a city name in the Google search box you get
- Local schools and universities
- Local government bodies and public services
- Business associations and sports clubs
- Tourist information
- Local news papers, TV stations, radio, etc
- Local events (sporting or other cultural events)
All these websites can become effective link partners for that particular city name. Prepare a strategy that is focused on one city and then replicate the same with other cities.
Sponsor a cultural event or an academic conference in that city. If that is proving to be expensive then offer to contribute by way of donation or some service in exchange for a link. This is one way you can build local links.
Sponsor a public service in that city that would bring value to you as a marketer. For example if you are a job portal then you can offer to create a database of volunteer firemen that can be summoned in case of emergencies.
Buy campaign websites or local election websites. Such sites have no value after the campaign or the local elections. However, they still have a ton of link value. Contact the owner and buy off the website.
Whether you offer your products/services locally or nationally having local presence is going to affect your ranking. In fact Google itself has made it clear that local is going to play a major role in ranking. Therefore it is important that you cover all the major cities in your country before your competitor does so.