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Build a Solid Local SEO Strategy - in Any City

A local SEO strategy is a crucial component of digital marketing for any business serving customers in specific geographic areas. It not only allows businesses to target and connect with their immediate local audience, but it helps businesses increase visibility, compete effectively, and build a strong local brand presence. But another layer of consideration is catering your SEO strategy to the size of your city.


Why Consider City Size for Local SEO


The dynamics and competition within different city sizes can vary significantly and here are a few reasons why:

  1. Targeting the right audience: The size of the city can impact the scale of your target audience. In a small city, your target audience may be more concentrated, allowing you to focus your efforts on reaching the local population directly. In a larger city, you may need to narrow down your target audience by specific neighborhoods or demographics to effectively reach the right people.

  2. Competitiveness: The level of competition in search engine results can vary based on city size. In big cities, there is often more competition for visibility in search results due to the larger number of businesses competing for attention. In small cities, there may be fewer competitors, giving you a better chance to rank higher in local search results.

  3. Local relevance: A localized SEO strategy helps establish your business as a relevant and trustworthy option within your specific city. By tailoring your content, keywords, and citations to the local area, you increase your chances of being found by users who are specifically looking for products or services in your city.

  4. Geographic targeting: The size of the city determines the level of geographic targeting required for your SEO strategy. In a small city, you may focus on targeting the entire city or a few nearby towns. In a big city, you may need to narrow your focus to specific neighborhoods or districts to ensure your business is visible to the right local audience.

  5. Community engagement: Engaging with the local community is often easier and more impactful in smaller cities where the sense of community is stronger. By participating in local events, collaborating with local influencers, or supporting local organizations, you can establish a stronger local presence and build relationships that can benefit your SEO efforts.

By considering the size of your city and adapting your local SEO strategy accordingly, you can effectively target your audience, optimize for local relevance, navigate competition, and engage with the community in a way that aligns with the unique characteristics of your city.


5 Steps to a Solid SEO Strategy - in Any City

Now that we've consider the reasons why you should take city size into consideration, let's look at the five steps for a solid local SEO strategy with examples for small, medium, and big cities:


1. Optimize your Google My Business (GMB) listing:

  • Small cities: Ensure your GMB profile is complete with accurate information, including address, phone number, and business hours. Use relevant local keywords in your business description.

  • Medium cities: In addition to optimizing your GMB profile, consider adding high-quality photos of your business and encouraging customers to leave reviews.

  • Big cities: Stand out in a big city by regularly posting updates on your GMB listing, leveraging features like Google Posts, and utilizing the Questions & Answers section to engage with potential customers.

2. Target local keywords:

  • Small cities: Optimize your website content and meta tags with specific keywords related to your business and the small city you're located in. For example, "affordable wedding photographer in Ames, Iowa."

  • Medium cities: Expand your keyword targeting to include specific neighborhoods or areas within the medium city. For instance, "best seafood restaurant in downtown Tampa, Florida."

  • Big cities: Focus on targeting long-tail keywords that combine the big city name with specific services or products. For example, "luxury apartments for rent in Manhattan, New York."

3. Build local citations and backlinks:

  • Small cities: Focus on building citations on local directories and review sites relevant to your small city. Seek backlinks from local businesses and organizations, such as sponsoring local events or participating in community initiatives.

  • Medium cities: Target a mix of local and industry-specific directories, as well as review sites. Look for opportunities to earn backlinks from medium-sized city publications or blogs.

  • Big cities: Aim for authoritative citations and backlinks from well-known local directories, major news outlets, and influential city-specific blogs or websites.

4. Create location-specific content:

  • Small cities: Develop blog posts or landing pages that highlight local events, attractions, or news related to your small city. For instance, "The Ultimate Guide to Exploring Ames, Iowa: Best Local Attractions."

  • Medium cities: Create content that caters to specific neighborhoods or districts within the medium city. For example, "A Food Lover's Guide to South Tampa's Culinary Scene."

  • Big cities: Focus on creating comprehensive guides, lists, or resources that cover various aspects of the big city, such as "The Top 10 Hidden Gems in Chicago" or "A Complete Guide to Navigating Los Angeles Traffic."

5. Engage with the local community:

  • Small cities: Participate actively in local events, sponsor community organizations, and engage with locals on social media platforms specific to your small city.

  • Medium cities: Collaborate with influential local bloggers or social media personalities, host or sponsor events, and actively engage with the community through online forums or local groups.

  • Big cities: Establish partnerships with local businesses or organizations, leverage city-wide events or festivals for promotional opportunities, and use geo-targeted social media ads to reach your target audience within the big city.


Considering the size of your city when building a local SEO strategy is crucial for optimizing your online presence and reaching your target audience effectively. Whether you're operating in a small, medium, or large city, tailoring your approach to the unique dynamics and competition of your local market can make a significant difference in your visibility, relevance, and success. By understanding the specific characteristics of your city, targeting the right keywords, optimizing your website and online profiles, engaging with the local community, and adapting your strategy as needed, you can establish a strong local presence, attract more local customers, and gain a competitive edge in your market. Remember, local SEO is an ongoing process, so continually monitoring and refining your strategy based on local insights will help you stay ahead and maximize your local search visibility.

We are committed to helping businesses like you gain brand trust and longevity. Drop us a line, if you are looking for a marketing agency to help you move the needle!

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