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Geo Targeting Question

Append City Name to Keyword or Not

4:53 am on Aug 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Hey everyone, I just did a preliminary search for this question and couldn't find anything to answer it so I'm posting a new thread here. If there is a thread that anyone knows of that answers this question, I'd appreciate a redirection.

In any event, I'm running PPC ads for our company in our local area and i'm told that geo targeting should take care of the need to append the city name to the keywords I'm using to trigger the ads. Briefly, I'm trying to decide whether specifying a the City Name such as "Somecity Web Design" in a geo targeted campaign for that ad is more effective than relying on the geo targeting to serve the ads to the correct geographical area and use just the keyword "Web Design" without the city name specified?

I've been wrestling with this now for a couple of days and even ran a test with both versions and identical ads and bids to see which would get more impressions. So far It seems that appending the city name to the keyword nets the most impressions.

Does anyone have any thoughts or similar experiences with this problem? Any advice or expertise would be greatly appreciated. I'm about to tear my hair out here.

Warm Regards,


8:08 am on Aug 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member quadrille is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

I do not have direct experience; but my understanding of geo targeting suggests it is more than simple adding cities to keywords.

You need to think about having telephone numbers and zip/postal codes on the site, and a broader local content than just a few arbitrary keywords; in other words, compare your site with other 'local sites'; that's what Google will do!

But others probably know much better than I ...

1:26 pm on Aug 31, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Thank you Quadrille, I appreciate your response and will be passing that along. Just to clarify, so you're suggesting that in targeting the local market we should have references to the city and other local elements as well so the SE's will bite down on the content thus increasing the relevance level and potentially ranking us higher for a localized search?

I was looking to find out which was the more effective strategy for keywords when targeting local markets whether to append the city name to the keyword or rely solely on the geo-targeting system to serve the ads to the appropriate market.

I'll be keeping an eye on the campaigns to see if the keyword with the city name appended outperforms the keyword without or vice versa.

Again, thank you for your input. It's greatly appreciated.



8:39 am on Sep 1, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member quadrille is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Yes. I hope others will chip in, as it's a big issue, and knowledge is all 'second hand'.

My understanding is that the SEs are quite sophisticated these days in local stuff, and every bit helps.

I also understand that using certain SE 'partners' can help - one works with yellow pages, for example ...

10:05 pm on Sep 2, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

you will get more impressions with the name as there will be people searching from out of the geo zone.... at an office etc.
there are also ISPs who are not seen as in the area
also do not use broad match... phrase is good
3:19 pm on Sep 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Thanks Aussie!

I'll give your suggestions a try! I appreciate it.

7:03 pm on Sep 6, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

any time... let me know how it goes and maybe can give you a few other suggestions once it is rolling along
3:44 pm on Sep 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Seems to be running along quite nicely. Ran a quick test on one of our most sought after keywords both with and without the city name appended and in G and Y, the city-appended keyword outperformed the non city-appended keyword over 2:1 in impressions.

Looks like we have our answer.


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