Geo-tagging has been around for a number of years now and its an effective way of combining real-world locations with information on web pages. Indicating geographic location to search engines will not shoot you to the top of search results pages1 but it does help them see that a page is relevant to a local user.
Tagging your pages helps associate content that is not necessarily related to the business location information (i.e. name, address and phone number) with the location of the business.
With the rise in semantic search, algorithm updates like Venice2 and people using mobile devices on the fly to find what they are looking for, attorneys should ensure that content relevant to searchers can be read and interpreted by devices. Geo-tagging is the way to do that.
Installing the code on your site is pretty simple. Depending on your level of knowledge, you may be able to do it yourself or have your coder do it for you. You can do some research on how to make your tags look like the example below or you could save yourself a lot of time and use a simple geo-tagging tool.
<!– Start of GEOtags –>
<meta name=”geo.region” content=”US-PA” />
<meta name=”geo.placename” content=”Philadelphia” />
<meta name=”geo.position” content=”39.950087;-75.163999″ />
<meta name=”ICBM” content=”39.950087, -75.163999″ />
<!– End of GEOtags –>
Its sweet when simple tools are available online that make your life a lot easier. The Geo-Tage HTML Generator3 allows you to input an address and then click a button automatically generating the geo-tag (like the one you see above) with almost zero effort.
After you are finished, simply copy and paste the snippet into the head section of your website. That is the area in the HTML code in between these tags <head>code goes here</head>. Note that if you are using a CMS you will want to paste it into your template. For WordPress that would be header.php or its equivalent and for Joomla or Drupal the template file. For non-CMS websites you will want to post the code on every page in the head section.
Another important note is that the format above is the geo-tag meta format and not the microdata format4. Microdata is used in line with HTML on content that is seen on the page whereas the meta geo-tag is used in sections of the page where there is not content seen by users. The meta tag method is good for geo-tagging web pages that do not have address information on them but for which webmasters still want to provide location information.
As mentioned before, adding these tags to your attorney website will not have a large impact on ranking. Instead, lawyers should use it in combination with other strategies and other types of markup. Combined with other tactics, geo-tagging can be a part of a strong optimization foundation.