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Franchise Sites And Duplicate Content


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3 replies to this topic

#1 shabbirmoosa

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 05:45 PM

I have read all the postings I could find regarding this subject. I understood the following:
  1. localization, city/state keywords and how they can be considered madlib spam
  2. that duplicate content is not penalized, but the SE may show just one page
  3. Anything dynamically created is not quite unique content and in the grey area.
  4. And also, that city / state madlib type do actually work, but may not for long, and there are risks, etc.
We have a business that has franchises / branches in about 20 metro cities. Each Franchise has its own domain FranchisenameCity.com. Each domain has pages FranchisenameCity.com/kwpagename. So there are essentially 20 pages that have the same content, where just the City name is replaced dynamically. The parent company has a website Franchisename.com with page(s) Franchisename.com/kwpagename.

Its not really practical to write unique content for each of the locations except for modifying city name. I think many businesses are in the same situation. Also, to add unique stuff about that city would just be fluff and not really interesting. We actually do want the local searcher to find that specific city domain / pages. We basically want to optimize the franchise.com page for the general KW, and franchisecityname.com page for the kw=cityname query.

So my questions are as follows:
  1. Fort he search term kw+cityname, would the 20 pages be considered duplicate content? Or does it not depend on the query?
  2. For the search term general keyword, where we want franchise.com page to show that does not have the city modifier. Would the ranking for this page be affected by the city modified versions? Only one would show, but would it show lower than it would have if the others did not exist.
  3. If the city name is replaced on each page, is that actually considered duplicate content? it is similar, but not duplicate, especially for the local search.
  4. If there are only 20-30 cities / sites, would this be considered too many? I can understand if its in the thousands, but any idea what the search engines think?

The local city pages are ranking for some terms, and do work to bring in leads. Another option (from other postings) is to have just the main franchise site, and then list each city served somewhere in the pages. However it does not give the effect of the actual local franchise.

I appreciate the feedback of the forum members

#2 Scottie

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 07:40 PM

I think it makes sense to have a more "personalized" page for the local franchise. What I don't understand is why they have to be identical? At the very least, there should be some unique contact information and some little blurb about the local owner.

Can you give your franchises some flexibility to add a little local personality to their page?

#3 shabbirmoosa

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Posted 25 March 2010 - 10:49 PM

thanks scotti
Most of the unique information would be on each Franchisecityname.com site's contact us page. Also the compnay name is listed as Franchise Cityname on all the pages. Besides that, the product information for each product page is basically the same. Sobesides that, still looking for specific answers to those questions, if you can share thoughts

Thanks again

QUOTE(Scottie @ Mar 25 2010, 07:40 PM) View Post
I think it makes sense to have a more "personalized" page for the local franchise. What I don't understand is why they have to be identical? At the very least, there should be some unique contact information and some little blurb about the local owner.

Can you give your franchises some flexibility to add a little local personality to their page?


#4 Jill

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Posted 26 March 2010 - 07:03 AM

I've seen the types of sites you're talking about. If they're working for you already, then I wouldn't worry about it.

That said, as the main company, you should provide the ability for any individual owner to completely create their own unique look, feel and content if they would like to.

The smart ones will so they can be differentiated from all the others. It's likely Google would reward those ones as well.




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