Geo-Location (Or how to help people find you) is a must for any bricks and mortar business which has a website.
Although it looks complicated, if you follow these steps you’ll be up and running whist you make and drink a cup of tea.
We make some assumptions in this article, namely that you have and know how to use a Google Webmaster Tools account for your website, that you are familliar using notepad or notepad++, that you have FTP access to your website and of course that you know the address and have a short description ready for your business.
Step 1. Put the kettle on.
Step 2. Go to http://www.gridreferencefinder.com/ and enter your location in the box on the left hand side and click Go.
Step 3. Hover over the red pin and make a note of your Latitude and Longitude. Note that depending on where you are one or both of the numbers may have a minus sign in front of it, this is needed.
Step 4. Mash the tea.
Step 4. Create a new notepad file or even better notepad++ named ‘locations.kml’
Step 5. Paste this code into the top 3 lines:
Step 5. On line 4 enter the code
<name>Locations for Your Business Name.</name> but replace ‘Your Business Name’ with your business name.
Step 6. On lines 5 to 7 copy these three lines, but replace ‘Your Name’ with your name.
Step 7. Finish the tea.
Step 8. On line 8 copy this code but replace the link with the link to your website.
<atom:link rel="related" href="http://www.mywebsite.com" />
Step 9. Copy this code to lines 9 to 14.
Again change the Business Name, Business Address and Business Description to your own.
Step 10. Copy this code to lines 14 – 20.
Again change Longitude and Latitude to your own as noted down in step 3. Note the website gave the in the order Latitude and Longitude but you need to enter them the other way round.
Step 11. Save and close the file.
Step 12. Create a new notepad or notepad++ file and name it geositemap.xml
Step 13. Copy this code into the file, changing the Website Address in line 4 to your own but keeping the /locations.kml in place.
<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<urlset xmlns="http://www.sitemaps.org/schemas/sitemap/0.9" xmlns:geo="http://www.google.com/geo/schemas/sitemap/1.0">
Step 14. Save and close the file.
Step 15. Upload both of these files to the root of your website.
Step 16. Log onto Google Webmaster Tools and add your new sitemap in the same way you would add a normal sitemap.
Step 17. Finish your tea.
This is the full file used for Eye 2 Eye Opticians in Nottingham:
<?xml version=”1.0″ encoding=”UTF-8″?>
<kml xmlns=”http://www.opengis.net/kml/2.2″ xmlns:atom=”http://www.w3.org/2005/Atom”>
<name>Locations for Eye2Eye Opticians.</name>
<atom:link rel=”related” href=”http://www.eye2eyenottingham.co.uk” />
<address><![CDATA[346 Calrton Hill, Nottingham, NG4 1JD, United Kingdom]]></address>
<description><![CDATA[A friendly independent opticians in Nottingham, we like to give our customers the best of both worlds; great value for money with offers competitive with high street brands AND the quality, professional friendly service you would expect from an independent opticians.]]></description>