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A) areaA.mysite.com, areaB.mysite.com for each area
B) mysite.com/areaA/, mysite.com/areaB/ for each area
C) three separate domains? mysiteareaA.com mystireareaB.com etc.
D) just one domain that uses all three areas as keywords in the title, text, etc. or
Or some option E I haven't thought of?
A) This will take a long time to rank as each subdomain is considered a separate site. Folders would be better here.
B) This would be the quickest way to rank and add relevant content to your site. It just depends, does your site already rank?
C) This is a good play, but you should use AreaAKeyword.com, AreaBKeyword.com, etc...that would give you the benefit of location specific and keyword. This will take a while to rank as well as each site will be new. From an SEO stand-point these domains would be strong.
D)I'm not sure I understand this one. Are you talking about using widget.com/Area-Widgets/? That would be a good play as well.
Overall, I think you just need to figure out how much time and effort you want to put into this. Link building and overall optimization is easier for just one site. And again, it really depends on your business.
Certainly, the questions you ask are good ones (I'd stay away from option A) but I've seen options B) and C) work work--instead of option D), I'd lean more towards creating pages that are devoted to individual stores and get those pages listed) but there will be more to it than just how you set your site up.
It sounds like it might also be beneficial to develop separate sites for each area with a URL of businesstypelocationname.com and promote them as well? If each site has unique and worthwhile content will it help me to potentially secure to spots in the top ten for my keywords even if the phone number and address of the two different sites are the same? Is this a legitimate (whitehat) way of increasing presence? What about linking from these back to the main site?