Local search citations are an important component of local SEO and help your business stand out from the competition. They’re a major ranking factor for Google, and if your company has a good presence across the web, it can boost your rankings significantly.
Citations are mentions of your business on the web – specifically mentioning your physical location, such as name, address, phone number (NAP), and sometimes a link to a website. These citations appear on websites, apps, social platforms, and online directories.
Several types of citations exist, including structured and unstructured. Structured citations local search citations are created by data aggregators and major online directories, such as Yelp. These are often the most valuable citations for search engines, since they are built from values entered into specific fields.
General, industry-specific citations are also valuable, and can help your business stand out in searches that may not be directly related to your products or services. These include local sites, chamber of commerce websites, professional guilds and associations, as well as niche or industry-specific directories.
These can be very helpful for local SEO, because they allow your business to be visible on a variety of relevant and trustworthy websites that match search queries. This helps your site show up more prominently in Google’s local search results and, ultimately, drive more business to your door.
In addition, building citations within these reputable sources is also a good way to ensure that your business’s location information stays consistent throughout the web. This helps Google recognize that your business is real, operates locally, and is truthful about its services.
The number of local citations your business needs depends on the size of your geographical location, as well as the type of product or service you provide. For example, a restaurant in a small town will likely require less citations than a car dealership in a larger city.
Accuracy: The accuracy of the information in citations is important, particularly when it comes to key contact details. Make sure that your basic contact info is the same across most or all of your citations, and don’t forget to update it when changes are made to your business.
Distribution: How many citations you have and how they’re distributed are also significant factors in your local SEO citation strategy. Getting your business listed on all the major directories and platforms is a must.
Quality: The quality of the citations you build will also have a big impact on your local SEO citation success. This means ensuring that your citations are accurate and have a good domain authority, so they can withstand changes in Google’s algorithms.
The best way to get started is to research and identify the most popular local citation opportunities for your type of business. Once you’ve found the best ones for your area, it’s time to start submitting your business’s information. Be sure to check that your citations are correct and complete, as this will have the most impact on your local SEO efforts.