The Definitive Guide to Claiming Your Business Directory Listings (Citations)

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Information about The Definitive Guide to Claiming Your Business Directory Listings...

Published on February 24, 2014

Author: SEOBulldog



Citations, directory listings, whatever you want to call them, are a vital piece of local SEO that should not be ignored. Not only can a properly optimized citation profile help you increase your search engine rankings, BUT, by doing this, you will be on 50-100+ additional high traffic website that you were not on previously!

Directory listings are powerful, don't neglect them.

How to Claim Your Business Listings (Citations)

Citations • Citations (directory listings) are vital to the success of your business online –They increase your ranking with Google and make it easier for customers to find your business! • 43% of Google searches are local. • Learn how to claim and optimize your online listings.

Collecting Data • The first step is to collect data for your business and make an Excel spreadsheet with these columns –Directory Name –Address –Phone Number –Categories –Link • Here’s how your spreadsheet will look

Filling in the Information • Directory- the name of your website • Name- the name of your business as shown on your website • Address- the physical address of your business • Phone number- the phone number of your business; make sure to always fill in the number with the same format • Category- the category(ies) your business will be listed under • Link- the link to the listing site

Citation building tools • These tools are helpful, but keep in mind none are 100% accurate. – Shows your listings and your business reviews all in one place; it also gives you a to-do list to improve your listings – Local Citation Finder by Whitespark: There are several paid tiers you can use; the free search is also quite helpful for a small business. – • You can pull a citation report to see what businesses have been claimed • Ranks citations in order of importance • Shows which citations haven’t been claimed • Gives a link to the citation

• Use a couple of these sites to check out the online listings for your business. After that: –Pick one of the tools from my list above and fill in your business’ information as asked by the site –Copy the information from each listing into your spreadsheet –Mark the boxes with incorrect information (wrong phone number, incorrect address, etc.) with red (you can also use yellow color for less serious issues, for example a mistyped business name) –Repeat the steps above for one or more tools

Check for errors • Make sure to check for errors (and yes, there will be errors.) • For example, if you find a listing with address, run the search again – this time using your correct business name and the incorrect address. This can lead you to other listings with the same error. And, as practically all business directory websites get their data from third-party providers, you are very likely going to find one common source for all the wrong information.

Where does the info come from? • Some important sites: – Over 100 search platforms – business data to top 5 search engines – used by Bing,, Superpages, AOL, Yellowpages, Citysearch and MapQuest – Partnered with yahoo and AT&T

• Make sure to check at least 20 directory sites to make sure your business is listed accurately. Also, check sites that are specific to your business. – – – – – – – – – – – And more

To wrap up, remember • Claim all listings • Claim an existing listing instead of making a new one • Report duplicates • Use an email registered with your domain instead of a generic provider • Use as many photos and videos as you can

• This process is time consuming, but it’s worth it! • If you find yourself not having time, please don’t hesitate to contact us here at SEOBulldog. Local SEO & Citations in particular is something we really ‘kick butt’ in. Let us help improve your business!

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