Local citation building is one of the most important strategies for improving your local SEO ranking, according to a study by Moz. When it comes to online marketing, a citation refers to a mention of your business name, address, and phone number on a third-party site.
Citations could be of different types, and could include a combination of your company name, address, number, products, services, images, hours of operation, videos, and social media links. Citations can be unstructured, as in an article, where your name and address/ products are mentioned not together but spread across the article; or they can be structured, as in a directory listing, where name, address, number, etc. are mentioned in a specific format. These are usually under your control as you can submit these details to Google, Yelp, etc. for mention in their directories.
Either manually or by using a tool – or a data aggregator like Foursquare, you need to submit your accurate business details to business directories or citation sites. It is important to note that here, quality is more important than quantity. Therefore, it is important to focus on highly popular sites like Yellow Pages and Yelp, or sites that are relevant to your location or industry. Also remember that accurate, updated, and consistent details need to be submitted; otherwise, there could be lack of trust: not just from customers, but search engines as well. If you have performed citation building in the past, you can use a tool to keep track of sites you have already submitted to; this saves you the time and effort of manual search.
Local search experts are of the opinion that citation building is critical for local search rankings; of course, you can’t rely solely on this one activity, but it is very important. Used in combination with other strategies, citation building can help your business get discovered a lot quicker.
During the Covid-19 lockdown, you have all the time in the world to submit citations to as many business directories as possible; you have the time to research which ones are the best to submit to, so that your business gets discovered. When you are unable to do your core business, this one activity of citation building can help you get your business front and center, so that when the lockdown is lifted, customers will already know you, where you are, and what you’re offering.