What are local business citations? If you are still in the process of learning about online presence management and improving your online reputation, then you have likely asked yourself this question at least once. It’s important for every business owner to understand what local business citations are to get the most out of their online presence, so today we’re going to tell you everything you need to know…
What Are Local Business Citations?
The first thing we need to address when asking “what are local business citations” is, of course, the definition of “local business citations”! Now, a local citation of your business is any online mention of your business name, address, and phone number.
Where Do Local Citations Happen?
Local citations for your business can be made in local business directories, on apps, on various websites, and via social platforms. In an increasingly digital world where everyone turns to the online world for recommendations of businesses, local citations can be the key to your business’s success or, if neglected, the downfall of your company.
But What Are Local Citations?
The purpose of local citations is varied depending on the platform where a citation is made, but most commonly, a citation is incorporated into a business directory. Now, this differs from the list directory that most people think of if they had a computer back in the 1990’s. Back in the 1990’s a business directory was more of a way to drop a link to your business and “get listed”. There were thousands of business directories and the goal for most people was to get listed in as many of these directories as possible.
Well, times have changed. As times have changed, search engines have become increasingly savvy when it comes to “link dumping” and spammers and as such, not all directories carry the same weight. A reputable online presence manager can identify those local directories that are important to your business and ensure that your business is listed accurately and professionally.
What Purpose Do Local Citations Have?
The purpose of local citations is multifaceted. Firstly, citations help internet users to find local businesses and by inclusion in only reputable directories, internet users know that they can trust your business listing. Secondly, when your business link and contact information is included in a reputable directory, you create a link back to your website that is not reported as “spam” or link dumping.
Why Have a Professional Help With Your Local Business Citations?
We have answered the “what are local business citations?” but why should you have a professional help you with your local business citations?
A professional online presence manager will be able to help you with your business citations by knowing where to submit your business listings. They will be able to recognize a reputable directory site from a disreputable site so that you won’t be penalized by submitting your listing to a site that search engines have flagged as being “spam”.
Having a reputable online presence manager on your team will also help with the listing process. Many people believe that using auto-submitter tools will save them time in getting their website listed in multiple directories. The truth is, however, that these tools can cause many problems for your business that reach much further than just the directories that you are submitting to. Many submission tools are flagged as “cheating” by websites and by search engines because they often bypass specific requirements made by each individual directory. This will quickly lead to your website being blacklisted and then you’ll be left with no recourse. So instead of going about local business citations in the lazy way, it’s important to tackle your local business citations one at a time.
Your online presence manager will hand write and submit all of your local business citations by hand rather than relying on one of these auto-submit tools that risk ruining your business’s online reputation.
Why Can’t I Do My Local Business Citations Myself?
More than a few business owners have tried to save a few bucks by tackling local business citations themselves…these are the same individuals who were asking “what are local business citations?” just a few paragraphs ago… The problem with this – aside from not knowing where to begin and what information is necessary to submit for each citation, is that the process is so time-consuming!
If you are like most business owners, then you likely have a schedule that spills into the following day every day of the week. This leaves very little time for research (which is necessary to learn where to submit your local business citations) or for handwriting and submitting your business information to those reputable business directories and sites.
So, even if you do find the time to learn which directories are reputable listing sites for your local business, you will also have to find the time to stay on top of the citation submission process. And no, it’s not the kind of thing that’s one time and done. To keep your business active and regularly listed, you have to check your listings often and add new listings when new reputable directories come to light.
Need Help With Your Business’s Local Business Citations?
If you could use a hand with your business’s local business citations from an expert in online reputation and presence management, Online Presence Manager can help you. Just pick up the phone and call today for your free consultation or fill in our online form and let us know how we can help you!