10 Sites You Must Be Listed on to Get to 1 in Local Search

By Todd Temaat

If you’re trying to develop a local search engine marketing strategy for your business, there’s no doubt you’ve claimed your business in Google’s Local Business Center (recently changed their name to Google Places). And now that your listing is ready to go and you’ve filled it with all the critical information about your business, you’re looking for some ways to enhance it and raise your ranking.

What is a Citation?

The single biggest factor in where you show up in a local Google search is the number of citations Google can find for your business on the web. Do you remember back in high school or college when you were writing a research paper and you had to list where you got your information from? Well, this is no different. Google scours the internet looking for other sites that refer to (or cite) you and your business.

As they find these citations, they add the ‘link juice’ to your profile because they know you’re legitimate. And the more citations they find, the more legitimate and relevant they think you are and the higher you will move in the search results.

Where Do Citations Come From?

There are sites all over the internet that can act as a citation source for you, but there are a handful that Google considers Major data Providers. These are sites that maintain huge databases of companies and the products and services they provide. Some of them are more traditional…like Superpages or Yellowbook. And others are more 21st century…like Angieslist and Yelp.

Google considers them as trustworthy third party information sources and counts citations from them as very reliable because they can’t be influenced by you (the business owner) directly. So by making sure each of these sites has correct and consistent information listed about your business, you’re doing yourself and your search results a huge favor!

The Top 10 Places You Must Be Listed

The first two places make perfect sense…even though they’re Google’s direct competition. Google wants to see your company also listed at Bing Local and Yahoo! Local.

Next you’ll want to make sure The Yellow Pages type sites all have your information. These sites include: YellowBook, SuperPages, and USA Business Directory.

Several local directories you must check include: Best of the Web Local, Yelp, Judy’s Book, and City Search.

And, finally, you should also make sure you have a profile and some reviews (doesn’t really matter to Google if they’re positive or negative reviews) at Angie’s List.

The Secret to Staying On Top

After you’ve gone to the trouble of setting up all these profiles and making sure your information is correct, you should start seeing your rankings improve. Google Places (as well as Yahoo! and Bing) will see that you are a legitimate business and that other sites around the web have consistent information about you. But to stay on top, you’ll want to periodically come back to each of these sites and make sure your information stays current and consistent.

It’s not uncommon for social sites like these to get outdated or incorrect information as they build a profile about your business. As a matter of fact, Google’s engineers know that about 10 – 15% of the data in their database about you is incorrect. That’s why they need you to go in and verify and correct it. The other sites are no different!

End your confusion and stop wasting your valuable time! Get our FREE Local Search for Small Business guide.

Win Your Local Market provides online marketing tips focused on small, local, primarily offline businesses. Our exclusive 5 Step Plan to Win Your Local Market shows you how to create the perfect online marketing plan to sustain and grow your small business…and how to do it without sinking much time or money into it!

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