Local Citations and SEO: What Local Citations Are and How to Find Them
An often-overlooked aspect of citations are local citations. These unassuming references to your business play a pivotal role in enhancing your website’s local SEO. Let’s start at the foundation – what exactly is a citation? A citation it is a digital footprint of your business. Every time your business is mentioned online, whether on directories, websites, or social media platforms, it contributes to your citation profile. It’s akin to the way a nod from a respected colleague boosts your professional reputation. A local citation can be a reference to your business that includes crucial geographical information. This could be your business name, address, phone number, and perhaps even your website. But in our case, we are refering to listings and directories that are local to your area.
How to Find Local Citations
Start your local citation treasure hunt by exploring online directories. These platforms serve as virtual yellow pages, listing businesses along with pertinent details. Google My Business, Yelp, and Yellow Pages are excellent places to begin. Ensure that your business information is not only accurate but consistent across all these platforms, as this consistency builds trust with both users and search engines.
A List of General Directories You Shuld Be Listed In
- Google Business Profile
- Apple Maps
- Better Business Bureau
- The Yellow Pages
- The Business Journals
- Yellow Place
- Local Chamber of Commerce
- Bing Places for Business
- B2B Yellow Pages
The Easiest Way to Get Started with Local Directories
The easiest way to get started is to use an aggrigator. Citation aggregators are online platforms or directories that compile and display business information, such as the name, address, phone number (NAP), and other details of local businesses. These aggregators play a crucial role by being a source that other directories and aggrigatiors get their information from. There are several tools out there, but for me, I tend to start out with MOZ Local which submits your info to many of the top aggrigators.
Niche and Local Directories
While major directories are essential, don’t neglect niche and local directories related to your industry. These specialized platforms can significantly boost your credibility within your specific market. For instance, if you’re a local bakery, being listed on a foodie blog’s directory can give you an extra layer of visibility among your target audience.
Search Terms to Find Niche and Local Directories
- Location + Directory
- Location + Businesses
- Location + Business Listings
- Example: Pheonix Local Business Listings
- Service + Directory
- Industry + Businesses
- Industry + Business Listings
- Example: Gardener Business Directory
Local Newspapers and Blogs
Engage with your community by exploring local newspapers and blogs. Many communities have online platforms that feature local businesses. Being featured in these publications not only adds to your local citations but also strengthens your ties with the community. Connect with local journalists and bloggers to explore opportunities for collaboration.
Monitor Competitors and Partners
In the quest for local citations, keep an eye on your competitors and business partners. Analyze where they are cited and match or surpass their presence. Collaborate with local businesses on joint ventures or cross-promotions, creating a mutually beneficial environment that extends your reach and citation count.
Take the time to ensure accuracy and consistency in your business information across various platforms, and seek out opportunities to be mentioned within your community. Now that you’ve gained insights into the world of local citations, it’s time to put this knowledge into action. Elevate your local SEO game and watch your business flourish!