It’s not because of unexpected law enforcement requirements so you can take a sigh of relief.
The Google gods are watching and when that comes to the survival of your local business that is important even though Local Moz rates citations with having just over a 13% weight compared to other factors.
Following, we will delve into 3 reasons why citations really do matter for the success of your local business.
FIRST: How Incorrect Citations Affect Your Business
Let’s say you are trying to outrank your local competitor and absolutely all other variables are exactly the same minus the fact that they have 10 citations and you only have 9. So you decide to create 2 citations and move ahead of them.
NOTE: I wish it all worked like I’m describing above but it doesn’t. That’s why many local businesses opt into hiring a professional. However, for sake of this discussion let’s keep it at this level.
You create the 2 citations and wait for Google to figure things out so that you move ahead of your competitor. One month passes and then two without anything happening.Why is Google ignoring your efforts? Click To Tweet
It could be that the citation you created wasn’t done correctly. If that happens to be the case there are a variety of ways to take action on cleaning them up.
Here is a 6 point citation cleanup checklist written by Aarthi Narayanan.
Step 1: Identify all possible NAP Variations
Step 2: Investigate for Incorrect NAP Online
Step 3: Use Tools to Simplify your Task
Step 4: The Actual Cleanup Process
Step 5: Record and Repeat
Step 6: Reach out to Websites and Fix your Listings
To dig deeper into Aarthi’s 6 steps stop by Synup.
HOT TIP: There is debate related to if Google counts incorrect citations against you or not. In the above case, it would mean that you have 9 citations with 2 penalties while your competitor remains with a solid 10.
However, let’s say that Google doesn’t count citations against you.
You still have a problem because your competitor remains with their 10 citations while you only have 9. So while it could be true that Google doesn’t count incorrect citations against you, it certainly doesn’t count them for you either.
SECOND: Citations Have Domain Authority (DA)
Every web property, even Google itself has domain authority (DA) which is the level of authority that the associated property has in the eyes of Google.
Returning to our above example, let’s say the 2 new citation directories that you choose to secure have a domain authority of 50. There are citation directories with even lower results when it comes to DA which is why it is extremely important to factor this into the equation before opting into a specific citation directory.
HOT TIP: There are also citation directories with much better DA. Use the following link to access a list of more than 40 US citation directories.
When we add up all the DA of your citations we find the following results.
- 3 directories at 100% DA
- 2 directories at 90% DA
- 4 directories with 80% DA
- 2 directories with 50% DA
Total DA = 320
Not bad. Unfortunately, your competitor has earned a DA of 330 and based on this factor they remain ahead of the game when it comes to the DA of their citations versus yours.
THIRD: Locations of Citation Directories Matter
The geographic location of where your citation directory is located at matters in two ways.
First, your local business is geographically located within the city where you offer your services. If you opt into citation directories that are in that same area you win in the eyes of Google.
An example of a respected citation directory within your local area would be your Chamber of Commerce. Quite often, there are others which can and should be identified and secured before you move forward in building your citation listings.
Second, the country that your citation directory is within also matters. You might find a citation directory that has a DA of 100 but if it isn’t in your country its ability to help you outrank your competitor diminishes.
Here are a variety of citation directories for you to use depending on the country you find yourself doing business within.
- Top 50 Citation Sites for USA
- Top 50 Citation Sites for UK
- Top 50 Citation Sites for Canada
- Top 50 Citation Sites for Australia
The above was shared at BrightLocal by Myles Anderson on March 22, 2017. It should be noted that citation directories come and go on a regular basis. As such you may find that as time extends related information may become outdated.
Never-the-less the details that he shares can get your citation building efforts moving in the right direction.
NOTE: If your country is not recognized by the above details it is not an indication that citation directories don’t exist where you are but additional investigation will be needed to gain the exact details you are seeking.
Importance of Citation for Local Business Owners
It should be noted that citation directories do not hold the same weighted value that they once did. However, this does not mean that they should be ignored.
According to Local MOZ citation directories have a weighted value of more than 13% when considering the value of your ranking factors in the eyes of Google.
If for this reason, you opt into ignoring citation directories you will find yourself to be at a significant disadvantage. Click To Tweet Let me explain with a little story.
Let’s say you own a restaurant that people rave about. Your food is delicious and the service is first class.
Those that open your establishment made a slight error this day. You happen to be vacationing in Tahiti and are unable to correct things before opening.
They neglected to insert forks into the napkin raps and the rest is history. Your customers go to partake and find they are forkless.
Isn’t it true that their meal could technically be eaten without forks?
So there is no problem, right?
Citations are kin to inserting forks within napkin raps and for that reason, you certainly don’t want to be without them.
Concluding Thoughts about the Importance of Citation Directories
While I’ve done my best to reveal 3 reasons that making sure citations are done correctly matters it should be noted that there are other factors to consider within this entire topic of the importance of these listings. However, what has been shared above certainly should and does factor into the entire equation.
What have I left out in your opinion?
What could use more clarity?
What has your own experience within the world of citation directories been?
Please share your thoughts, opinions, questions, and concerns in the comments below. I look forward to reading them.
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