LAST UPDATED: March 29, 2016
If search engines were the pretty girls back in high school, consider citations to be the muscle car to getting noticed.
A citation is a mention of your business name, phone number, address, and website across the web (e.g. a yellow pages directory).
Google, Bing, and Yahoo! are search engines that track the quantity and quality of citations when determining the ranking of a particular business.
Essentially, the more exposure a business receives from high-quality websites and directories, the higher it will rank in local online search.
Translation: more people looking for your products and services will land on your website.
Aside from Facebook, Twitter, and other social profiles you should already be utilizing, I have compiled a list of the 51 best, high-ranking local business citations. All for free, of course!
Important Ranking Factors to Consider
Sometimes you need to visualize how much “detail” you should put into your citations.
This Ford Mustang is guaranteed to “pick up” attention among search engines.
Car puns aside, consider these 3 aspects when filling out citations.
DA stands for “Domain Authority,” a metric developed by Moz that measures how well a website will rank on search engines.
Based on a 100-point scale, a site with a high DA is considered to have a stronger chance of ranking higher in the search engine results than a site with a low DA score.
Domain Authority is calculated by numerous aspects, but one of its driving factors is the number of quality backlinks pointing to your website.
Keep in mind that DA comes from quality linked content, so a low DA score does not necessarily equate to a low ranking.
Your DA score may even fluctuate up or down, for example, because quality backlinks have been removed or search engines are not crawling through your site as often due to the lack of rich, relevant content.
In this case, compile the domain authority of your competitors and industry leaders using the MozBar, then assess if the impact of these changes were widespread or not.
Maybe you want to “drive” search engines back to your place.
Or rather, you want to show Google, Bing, and Yahoo! that your business online is legitimate.
By inaccurately listing your business address across many, different citations, your site becomes less visible in the local search results.
When filling out citations, use the exact N.A.P. – name, address, phone number – information found on your website.
Instead of listing multiple call tracking phone numbers, use your primary contact number for the best search results.
Choosing your business categories is one of the most essential yet overlooked practices when building citations.
If people are searching for “business consulting” or “occupational therapy,” and your business is not targeted for these categories, then your site is not visible to all the customers you are trying to reach.
Preferably, you want to select 5 relevant business categories with the first 3 categories being spot-on.
List of Free, High-Ranking Citations
Back to our muscle car analogy, search engines have a wide interest in cars.
And to get noticed, you need the best citations!
Below are 51 citations with a DA of 40 and higher.
What also brings value to these sites is that they are easy to claim and update, in case you move to a different location or want to add more relevant information.
Along with the types of directories these citations are tailored to, the sign-up column states whether or not you will need to create an account under this site.
Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines – ready, set, GO!
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Bonus: 5 Business Citation Tips
Here are some SEO recommendations to follow when building citations:
- Fill out as much information as possible
- Write unique business descriptions that describe your history, niche, products and services
- Be 100% consistent with your NAP information
- Use a spreadsheet to track your login information
- Revise old listings and delete duplicates