A local citation refers to the listing of a business online that include the business’s NAP or the business Name, Address and Phone number. Often these local citations contain other information pertaining to the business such as descriptions, photos, and in some cases, reviews. All this information can be used by search engines to evaluate the authority of your business online. Local citations do not necessarily have to include links to your site to be of value to your business. That doesn’t mean you don’t have to include one if there is room for a link. Be thorough, add everything that the system allows for.
It is very important that your business is consistent with respect to the display of the NAP for the business. You must use the same address, phone number and name on all your local citations as well as on your website. After all, you can not expect Google, or any other service for that matter, to recommend your business if there is conflicting information on your NAP. This doesn’t mean you can’t list all your business’s addresses and such if you have multiple locations but, every business has an official head office and that is the one you should be using for your citations.
Local citations don’t have to be local and they don’t have to come from a directory. Just about any website that is willing to list your NAP is a citation. People tend to think directories are the only place to get local citations but that really isn’t the case. Directories are usually constructed more efficiently with all the cities and territories displayed in various groupings. This gives us the thought of localization. But in reality, those directories, that list your business’s location, are more than likely being hosted, far, far away from your locale. Therefore, it stands to reason that a NAP from an article posted on a related blog, adds to the overall citation count that search engines might use to aid in their ranking of your business.
That doesn’t mean that we should ignore online directories. On the contrary. Your business still needs to grab those, especially industry directories. Have you ever had to do an emergency Google search for a plumber, electrician or some such? If you have you probably would have noticed that most of the top rankings in the search engines go to specialty directories that offer up local contractors. Generally speaking, these specialty directories do a pretty good job of getting the local contractors information to you in a way that makes sense. Therefore, Google gives these specialty directories prominent rankings and because of that, you need to include specialty directory citations.
For the lower mainland construction industry some of the best specialty directories to obtain local citations from are:
If you haven’t started working on your local citations and you would like to begin the first thing you have to do is examine just how you have your company NAP set up on your corporate website. If it isn’t current, then you need to update it. Same with your Google My Business page, that must match what you have on your website. The same is true for all your social accounts that carry your NAP. They all must match. If they don’t edit them all to match. After all, why would a search engine or a directory recommend your business to their clients if your business isn’t even thorough enough to know where it is located?
Once you have your NAP straightened out, you can start adding your business profile, and NAP, to as many directories and websites as you can. The more the better. Just remember that quality over quantity is the key to your local citation success.
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