What Are Citations And How They Help Local SEO?

Citations play a major role in local SEO, primarily with ranking on Google Maps. They tell Google what your brand is about, where its located and important contact information. Back in 2012, Google came out with a patent known as their “Entity Patent” which uses entities (branding) as way to disambiguate your website and how it sees your brand in the digital world. Each brand receives a unique Entity ID number which Google uses to search for and find where your brand name is mentioned. By using citations, you are telling Google what your entity does, where it is located, and who you are. There are many different types of citations. In the text below you are going to find out about what types of citations there are and how to use them in your local seo campaigns.

General Directories

General Directories would include sites such as Yelp, YellowPages, YellowBook or even Judysbook. These type of directories hold every major category/niche in the local search. Getting into these directories is often a pretty easy process and doesn’t require any fees.

Niche Relevant Directories

Niche Relevant Directories are online business directories that relate to your category. For example, you’re a plumber and the directory might be PlumbingDirectory.com. These are an essential type of citations because they are the most relevant to your category. Google looks at relevance as part of their ranking algorithm.

Geo Relevant Directories

Geo Relevant Directories are usually the most difficult because there aren’t a lot of them. Insertion into these directories are often done on city government pages or chambers of commerce type of sites. Example of a Geo Relevant Directory would be City of Gardner KS Business Directory

Data Aggregators

Data Aggregators are large data suppliers of business information. Typically, the aggregators are buying info from the phone companies and white page directories of new businesses or they have a direct way of supplying info from agencies and businesses. The data aggregators also partner with large publishing directories to supply them direct feeds of business information. For example one aggregator called Acxiom sends business info to YellowBook.com.

  • Pro: Easy Way to include into all of the online directories

  • Con: It can take 6-9 months on average before all publishers have your info.

    • ExpressUpdate.com

    • Acxiom

    • LocalEze

    • Factual

    • 411 Directory Assistance

Many don’t know, but your phone company will include a free directory listing in the local white pages, yellow pages, and 411 Directory Assistance. Google cross checks yellow pages and white pages a lot for address validity of Google My Business listings. If your phone company will not include a free directory listing then you can use ListYourself.net. The advantages of being in the 411, is that the aggregators buy this information so you will make it to all the publishers eventually.

Web 2.0s

Web 2.0 sites are essentially free blogs that utilize other people’s domains. They help create brand awareness. The great thing about Web 2.0s is that they are free and you can place a lot of content and even NAP on them. Some examples are below. https://saltlakecitycarpetcleaning.wordpress.com/

News Citations (Press Release)

Press Releases are a great way for a local citations because they bring service, product, and brand awareness with news outlets. By syndicating a Press Release, you’re getting your business information on high authority news channels and websites. Here is an example of a News Citation (Press Release) http://www.wandtv.com/story/39268511/salt-lake-city-carpet-cleaning-releasesinformative-post-on-carpet-cleaning-tips-to-better-health-at-home

Hybrid Citations

Hybrid Citations are a type of citation where you place your business information on a 3rd party website which usually includes about a 500 - 2,000 word article related to your type of business. Then at the bottom of the article will show your business info such as your business name, phone number, website and address. You get 2 advantages, 1. You’re getting a backlink to your site with relevant content and 2. You’re getting brand recognition with the citation on the bottom of the article. Citations are a great way to show Google your brand and what you do. Make sure to contact SerpSpace for your citation needs. We include all types of citations and have different packages to suit your needs. https://www.serpspace.net

Written By
Jordan Pearce
11 Years in Local SEO
[email protected]