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I am looking for some industry expert weigh-in on best practices to how to best approach the business scenario described below.

Tim runs a business, timsbusinesswebsite.com. Tim's business has between 15 and 30 individual locations in large cities across the United States. Unfortunately, the approach to each individual location's digital marketing has been inconsistent.

  1. Some have a unique URL for their location (e.g. timsbusinesswebsite.com/new-york-city/)
  2. Some have a subdomain (e.g. chicago.timsbusinesswebsite.com)
  3. Some have a separate domain altogether (e.g. timsbusinesswebsiitelosangeles.com)

Which of these three approaches would best build the best foundation for the business in local and national rankings from an SEO standpoint and why?

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Are the businesses interrelated to each other? Go for sub-folder instead of sub-domain as Google will consider sub-domain as a separate domain name. Create a skeleton structure for your website.

If you have a country based separation do like this. us.example.com uk.example.com

But, if you are targeting online local location under 1 parent location. Then go for.

Example.com/location-1 Example.com/location-2 Example.com/location-3 Example.com/location-4

But, you can do it under one domain name by creating different pages for them. that would give you a lot of SEO benefits.

Suppose: Country is 1 Location is a

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Then the pages will be 
example.com 
example.com/a 
example.com/a/services
example.com/a/service-benefits 
example.com/a/contact-us

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Follow the above pattern. Let me know if you need any more help on this.

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