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Free Local SEO Advice โ€“ Business Profile Accuracy is Critical

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While some in the brick-and-mortar business world still believe that the web is only for global corporations and eCommerce sites, most have come around and realized the importance of online marketing.

Of course, knowing how to market your business online isnโ€™t quite so obvious. While there are several best practices, one that weโ€™re focusing on today is accurate business profiles, as accurate business profiles โ€“ also known as citations โ€“ on directory websites are important for local search engineย rankings

What Citations Are and Why They Matter

A citation is essentially a โ€œmentionโ€ of your business on the web. Most SEO experts believe that for a citation to be counted by Google, it must include your business name and address. Inclusion of your phone number may be important as well. The more citations your business receives, the more Google can trust that your business is real, especially if the citations come from reputable directories.

This is why it is important not only to have a large number of citations, but to ensure that the information in each citation is accurate, and that you are listed in all of the most reputable directories. Good examples of reputable directories include the Google Local directory, Yelp.com, and YellowPages.com, but any website that lists businesses โ€“ from a local restaurant review site to aย corporate business profileย directory โ€“ has someย local SEOย value.

How to Get Citations

Of course, knowing that your business should be cited by reputable directories in order to get indexed and displayed in from of your customers is only a piece of the puzzle. You also need to understand how to get listed. You can start by visitingย GetListed.orgย and entering in your business name and zip code. The site will return a list of the most popular directories and tell you whether or not your business is listed in them.

Use this tool to ensure that your business is not only listed, but owner verified, in all of these directories. You should be aware that it can take some time for the search engines to index changes on the web, so if you donโ€™t see any changes after updating the directories this shouldnโ€™t be a cause for concern.

Another tool to capitalize on is the Whitespark.caย Local Citation Finder. You can use it to find directories that businesses are listed in if they rank well for a certainย keyword. This is a good way to find directories that have demonstrated an ability to improve rank.

United States (US): New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Phoenix, Philadelphia, San Antonio, San Diego, Dallas, San Jose, Austin, Jacksonville, San Francisco, Columbus, Fort Worth, Indianapolis, Charlotte, Seattle, Denver, Washington, Boston, El Paso, Detroit, Nashville-Davidson, Memphis, Portland, Oklahoma City, Las Vegas, Louisville
United Kingdom (UK): London, Birmingham, Leeds, Glasgow, Sheffield, Bradford, Liverpool, Edinburgh, Manchester, Bristol, Kirklees, Fife, Wirral, North Lanarkshire, Wakefield, Cardiff, Dudley, Wigan, East Riding, South Lanarkshire, Coventry, Belfast, Leicester, Sunderland, Sandwell, Doncaster, Stockport, Sefton, Nottingham
Canada: Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Ottawa, Edmonton, Mississauga, North York, Winnipeg, Vancouver, Scarborough, Quรฉbec, Hamilton, Brampton, Surrey, Laval, Halifax, Etobicoke, London, Okanagan, Victoria, Windsor, Markham, Oshawa, Gatineau, Vaughan, Kitchener, Longueuil, Burnaby, Ladner, Saskatoon
Australia: Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Canberra, Newcastle, Wollongong, Logan City, Geelong, Hobart, Townsville, Cairns, Toowoomba, Darwin, Rockingham, Launceston, Bendigo, Ballarat, Mandurah, Mackay, Bundaberg, Bunbury, Maitland, Armadale, Rockhampton, Adelaide Hills, South Brisbane, Hervey Bay

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