In the world of modern technologies, getting to know the principles of online marketing is essential for every business owner. If you want your products and services to reach more potential customers, you’ll need to make them appear on various search engines. Looking up the information on Google is widely known to everyone. Here, the point is to make Google show your business among the top searching results in the local area. The quality of your work is important indeed, but that’s not all. To gain a better ranking you need to take care of how informative you are about your business. Today AZ Citation Services experts explain the NAP term, and give an answer to the questions can you rank with inconsistent NAP?
What is NAP and why it is important?
NAP refers to a set of basic information about your business that appears on every webpage where your business is listed. This acronym stands for:
- N= name of your business
- A= your business’s address
- P= a phone number your customers can use to contact you
Although these three pieces of information are the basis of NAP, providing your web address would be helpful, as well
When people, searching online, come across your business among the given results, the first thing they will see is the basic info about your work. That is why you should begin your citation building by writing your NAP. What’s more, at that point this would be the only source they have of your contact and location information. Without them, customers will not be able to find your office or call you for some more details about your business. Thus try to be accurate and precise.
The NAP consistency, and can you rank with inconsistent NAP
Your business needs a lot of mentions, and the number of citations is important, that’s for sure. However, this is the case when quantity cannot go over quality. If NAP information is incorrect, misleading, in one word inconsistent, your business’s reputation will be endangered. Just imagine someone who has found your services on Facebook, but decides to have a second look on Yahoo Local, as well. If the information on these two sites does not match, the customers would probably give you up and move on.
However, keeping the NAP consistency requires attention and time. The same basic information should appear on all the search engines but you need to pay attention to every detail. Basically, it’s not only about what you say, but also about how you do it. The form of your NAP needs to be exactly the same on all websites where you’re listed. Thus, for example, you must take care of the spelling of your name, or address, or the way your phone number is written. Every capital letter, apostrophe, and dash should be at exactly the same place, everywhere, with no exceptions. Otherwise, search engines wouldn’t be able to identify your business and its location and would consider your company untrustworthy. That’s how NAP affects the local search results.
What the wrong info can do to your business
Many business owners tend to neglect the importance of accurate and consistent citations for running a successful business. They think that customers and search engines don’t need any help in determining which NAP data are right and which are wrong. But, the truth is something completely different.
Search engines, such as Google or Bing, use citations to find out more about certain businesses. For them, it is important that the information they share with customers are legitimate and true. If Google figures out some inconsistency of the information provided, it marks the business as unreliable. In other words, with an inconsistent NAP, you can’t rank well in local search results. On the other hand, if the same data about a business appear on various webpages, that ensures Google you’re trustworthy and it will affect your online visibility.
Now, when it comes to customers, the idea is pretty much the same. It’s not a rare case that people get frustrated by the misleading information they get online. Wrong address or confusing location guidelines, for example, can cause people to get lost. Since nobody likes wasting time, they would always check everything twice. The first time the info doesn’t match, you can be sure your customer will turn to your competition. Therefore, every inconsistent NAP means one lost customer.
Several additional tips
- Keep your NAP information up-dated. That means in case you change your location, phone number, or the name of your business, you should make sure you do it in every place you have your business mentioned.
- Pay attention when marking your presence on social media such as Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. When you create your profiles you must add the same NAP on each of them. Make sure you don’t forget to respect the same format as well. It may seem easy, but as the number of social media you are listed on increases, thus increases the possibility of making a mistake.
- You should remember that you’re not the only one who is able to create your citations. It may happen that a story about your business appears in an article or in some other kind of text. If by some chance, the person who wrote the text made a mistake while typing your address, postcode or used some abbreviations when mentioning the business’s name, that automatically leads to inconsistency. That’s why you need to take care of every location your business is mentioned and try your best to correct all the possible mistakes.
If you want to be a serious marketer, you need to take the whole online marketing thing very seriously and act professionally. A lot depends on what kind of information you share with your customers, and how you do that. So, the next time you start wondering whether or not you can rank with inconsistent NAP, it’d be better to think twice.