Local SEO strategies depend on a number of different factors. One of the items on that list that make a local SEO successful is citation building. Creating citations in all the right places expands the network of potential customers and improves the local SEO. However, many business owners are not that experienced with citation building and are not sure where to start. This guide is for all those newcomers to the SEO world. Here’s all you should know about how and where to get business citations and improve the online presence of your company.
Citations – what’s to know?
Before explaining the strategies, let’s got through the citation basics. This way we can truly understand their importance for every local SEO. Citations are all the references to your business you can find online. They are unique locations where potential customers can come across your business and also find additional information about it. These have become more and more important in recent years, as so many online searches happen every day. People will look for any product or service on Google, research maps to find a certain business, etc. For that reason, your business needs to be discoverable in all the right places to ensure all the potential customers can easily find your contact details.
The two types of citations
In order to know how to get citations for your business, you also need to know the two types to look for. The structured citations are part of directories, that have a specified format for all of the entries. Common examples are websites such as Yelp, Yellow Pages, Facebook,etc. On the other hand, unstructured citations appear everywhere else on the internet – articles, blog posts, etc. These often don’t include all the information about the company, so people need to click on the provided link or look the company up on Google. Both of these are beneficial in different ways, and today we will help you get the citations you need for your business.
Check the already existing ones
Before you start creating new citations, it’s necessary to check the existing ones. Even though you might not be the one who created them, there are probably some mentions of your business online. The reason for this is to avoid creating duplicates, but also checking and updating any incorrect information about your company. Luckily, you can save a lot of time by letting a professional do the citation cleanup and analyze all the existing listings. It often takes a lot of time and effort to update and correct any inconsistencies, so trusting this task to a citation pro is recommended.
What are the best online locations to get citations?
It’s time to share how and where to get business citations for your company. However, you should know that this is the basic list that applies to most businesses. Opting for AZ Citation Services will ensure your citations are customized according to your location, niche, and general needs of the business. Let’s begin!
Start with Google
The base of every SEO is surely Google My Business. This listing should be the first step to make – check if there’s already a listing there, so you can claim it or create a new one in case you can’t find one. This should also be the basis for creating a unique style of creating your citations. All the others should be consistent with the one on Google. Therefore, be sure to add a correct NAP, and write it in a way so you can use the same information on other websites. Inconsistencies and incorrect info will confuse potential customers and probably drive them away.
Apart from Google My Business, there are a couple of more directories that are very important in building citations. These include data aggregators – websites that collect information about companies and forward it to other necessary locations on the web. The main data aggregators are Neustar/Localeze, Acxiom, Infogroup, and Factual. These are major in spreading information about businesses so be sure to add correct details.
Other major structured citations platforms
The next step would be adding citations to other major platforms that are important for almost all companies in every niche. These are Apple Maps, Bing, Facebook, Foursquare, Yelp, Citygrid, etc. People use these more often than you think, so the presence of your business on these platforms is an essential step in your SEO strategy.
Last, but not least, there are structured citations platforms that are focused on specific industries. Depending on the industry your business belongs to, be sure to add information that will be relevant to people looking for specific services. A great example would be TripAdvisor – a website that is a great source of information for those who like to travel and want to visit specific restaurants or hotels. Adding to relevant websites only increases credibility and allows more communication with the customers.
How to get unstructured citations?
Citations that are not structured can appear anywhere but specified directories. These can include blog posts, news articles, social media posts. There is an endless number of ways to acquire these mentions. You’ll need to invest more time and effort, but these surely pay off. Adding articles to local newspapers, engaging in social media events, publishing high-quality content on your website so it can get featured on blogs, etc. The focus is on being interesting to the readers and posting relevant information that shows you’re a professional that is worth mentioning.
As you can see, building citations is a process that involves a lot of time, effort, and energy – ut certainly pays off after a while. Citations improve your business’ online visibility and give accurate information to your potential customers. This way, they can easily find your offices and get the products or services you offer. The goal is to provide solutions to your customers’ needs and accurately inform the customers about where they can find them.