Is Your Marketing Optimized for Local Listings?

Getting your small business noticed on a local level means not just putting yourself in as many places as possible, but also using the right search terms and categories to keep your listing top of the pile. Factors as small as street abbreviation and business sector can make a big difference, so it's important to consider how you want to be seen and keep that consistent across all of the directories you choose. This article runs through the considerations you'll need to take in to optimize local listings and make your business website more searchable.

Setting a radius for geotargeting

Search Factors for Local Directories

The following factors are important to ensure your local business listing is complete and relevant to users searching for services that you can provide:
  • Most importantly, pick only the high quality and well-known directories used in your area. Avoid low quality sites which can be penalized by Google. Put yourself in the position of a consumer searching and whether the site feels right.
  • Use a consistent business name, right down to punctuation and use of suffixes such as 'LLC' or 'Inc'.
  • Use the same phone number and address, including consistent street abbreviations.
  • Select one address for email inquiries and maintain that across directories.
  • Focus on claiming and completing listings where you already have some good reviews to maximize the return from those directories.
  • Research and select as many relevant categories as possible to apply to your business listing. If you don't initially find relevant categories, review competitor listings for ideas.

Useful Tools for Building Local Directory Listings

The following tools and resources are a great place to start on the road to building your local listings:
  • GetListed - Offers a score to follow for your local listings, as well as identifying missing and unclaimed listings.
  • Withnoble - An extensive list of valuable directories that offer quality local results.
  • Whitespark - A local citation service that offers a number of tools, inclluding free trials, that can be used to build your small business listings.
  • Yext - Shows any inconsistencies over the top 50 directory sites, which you can then fix yourself or pay Yext to do so.
Start a spreadsheet to track which directories you've completed, decide on standard formats for your company name, address, phone number, and contact details, then get to work on building those listings! In time, you'll start to see your business surfacing in more and more listings, which means that your customers are seeing you more often as well. Don't forget to track where new customers are coming from so that you know where to focus future efforts and maintenance, as well as directories that you might want to dump due to poor performance.   How are you improving your visibility through local business listings? Connect with RingBoost on FacebookTwitter, or Google+ to share your success story!

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