Black Hat has been dead for over a year now, and many companies are still reeling. It’s hard to know what works in a “value-added” content world. Simply put, there’s no shortcut to providing quality content. Expert writers and designers aren’t an expensive luxury anymore. They’re now an industry requirement.
Google now gives you the option to mention your site’s relevance to a specific region with their geo-targeting tool. In the past Google used a few of their normal search parameters and signals to find out where in the world was a site located. They used to use signals from the top level domain (TLD) and the server location of the website.
Let’s take an example of a website which ends with “.cn”, this is the TLD for China and can tell Google that your site is more relevant in china. You may also have generic TLDs like “.com” or “.net” and your site is hosted on a server in china even though your site is relevant only to Americans and you reside in America, may be because hosting is cheaper in china. This will still tell Google to some extent that you have targeted the Chinese public as your server is based there.
To get rid of this issue permanently Google built the Geo-targeting tool which can let Google know if your site has specific relevance to your region only. This can help in better optimizing your site for certain keywords. For example you are a second hand car salesperson and if you have your own website you will want to geo- target it, because your services will be helpful mainly to those who reside in your region only. This can give you an audience of potential customers who may truly want to buy a car. It won’t affect your overall page rank because people outside the boundaries of your region will not be interested in dealing with you.
If you have a global website like that of a multinational company in which you have different sub-domains for each of the different countries that you serve. In such a case Google also allows you to individually go in and target each of these specific sub-domains to the regions which they are relevant to.
What you shouldn’t do is geo-target your site based on the language it is made in. If you have a site made in Korean, you should not geo-target your site in Korea as you will miss out on potential Korean speaking customers all over the world.
This geo- targeting tool can only be seen working when you select the “show pages only from….” Option. You have to verify ownership of the site to geo–target your link. If you have many sub-folders or sub-domains you should simple geo-target the main TDC and the ones under it will be automatically verified.
Instead of a long article to illustrate how to claim your Google Places Page, I thought it more helpful to create a video to illustrate exactly how to do so. If you are going to try to optimize and rank your Google Places Page without expert help this is likely step 1.