Every SEO strategy depends on the visibility and the ranking of a website. Citations are an essential part of your online presence. Even though they seem simple and unnecessary, they present a vital part of the SEO. However, the most confusing part for those without much experience is the way to build citations. You probably heard of data aggregators, manual posting, advertising agencies, etc. There’s a clear difference between them and the way they work. In this article, you’re going to find out everything about their characteristics. Learn how are data aggregators different from advertisers, and what’s the best way to build citations for your local business.
Data aggregators – basic facts
If you’ve ever wondered how certain information ended up on a website, without you putting it there, the answer is quite simple – data aggregators. These data centers are a perfect way to get information bout a business easily and quickly. As once phonebooks did the same job, now data aggregators make lists of businesses and sell them to other websites.
Main data aggregators
If you’re not sure what website is a data aggregator, remember that there are only four of them. They are:
- Infogroup (Data Axle)
- Neustar Localeze
What’s the role of data aggregators?
These four databases collect info about businesses, to be able to automatically provide them to search engines. Every piece of information you see about a business comes from one of these websites. After data aggregators collect this info, the next step is building citations – mentioning the business’s name or other info on other places on the internet.
Therefore, you can search for a business, and find info about it on Google Maps, Apple/Siri, Facebook, Bing Local, Yellow pages, etc. All of them rely on the information they found on one of the data aggregators, which is why the information they find must be correct and updated. If not, you get inconsistent or incorrect information all over the internet, and potentially lose a lot of customers.
Citations – what information should be included in a citation?
As we mentioned, citations are mentions of a business anywhere on the internet. There are two types of them – structured and unstructured. The first ones are more common, and the first thing a consumer look for when they need information about a certain business.
Structured citations are found on websites like Yelp or TripAdvisor, which offer a consistent format of business information. Therefore, these citations should include correct information about :
- phone number
- website link
- any other important information.
It is essential that these are correct and consistent all over the internet.
On the other hand, we have unstructured citations. They offer less information about a business, as they are simple mentions of the business in an article, on a blog post, or on social media. Either way, if the information is correct, it can lead a consumer to the website of a business. That is why the regular use of citation cleanup services is recommended.
Another aspect of data aggregators that confuses users is the subscription renewal. The main question is, what happens to the data after your subscription ends? Well, even though the information doesn’t simply vanish, it actually loses its trusted status, and continuing the job of the aggregator is not an easy task to do. Therefore, subscription renewal is something you should consider so you can update the information and have access to your listing.
Apart from the automatic data spread, you also have the option of manual submission. This means you should go from site to site and submit information by yourself, without any help from data aggregators. This can be time-consuming and also confusing for those who lack experience and knowledge.
Luckily, you can always hire professionals such as AZ Citation Services to take care of that instead of you. Adding citations to relevant websites, updating and cleaning up can be done without any extra effort on your side. There are several benefits of trusting advertisers:
- there’s no time waste – trusting someone reliable to do the work, leave your ith enough time to focus on your business.
- complete control of data spreading – as you can’t control where and how data aggregators will spread your info, outsourcing to advertisers gives you more control over your online presence.
- professionally written citations – if you’re not that experienced in citations and SEO, it’s best to put building citations in the hands of a citation specialist.
- full control of citation ownership – when it comes to data aggregators, the LDA listings are not claimed, which means anyone can do that before you do. However, with manual citations you claim the ownership of your listings, so you don’t need to worry about any malicious scenarios.
So, are data aggregators different from advertisers? And what’s the best option for building citations?
Actually, there’s no right and wrong. As you can see, data aggregators different from advertisers in a couple of ways. As they both offer several advantages, the only wise thing to do is to use both techniques. However, it is important to adapt them to your business needs and requirements. For a wider spread, data aggregators are a perfect solution. However, it is important to focus more on top citation websites, which is why manual submission is the way to go. Therefore, try to reach a balance between these two and try to make your business ranking as high as possible.