How To Build Local Citations
What are local citations and how can they help?
- Local citations help search engines and users find and contact your business more easily
- Consistent, accurate citations can help to improve your local SEO
- Tools like Listings Management can help you manage your citations quickly and easily
What are local citations?
A local citation is any reference to your business online that includes your basic contact information: particularly your business name, website, address, and phone number (NAP). Because this information is often included in online directories, local citations are also referred to as local SEO citations, local listings, or simply, listings. In most cases, your NAP is the minimum info needed to create a listing in a directory. However, on many websites, you can include a lot more, such as:
- Business descriptions
- Industries or categories served
- Social media platforms
- User ratings and reviews
- Photos of your business or products
As a result, if not actively managed, your business information can sometimes be inconsistent or outdated between sites. This can cause confusion for potential customers and even impact your SEO.
Thatâs where local citation building, or listings management, comes in.
How can local citations help with SEO?
When people in your community search for a local business, local citations help Google deliver them the most relevant results in local search. Thatâs because Google cross-checks business information across a variety of sources before showing it to users. It looks at:
- Your Google Business Profile (formerly known as Google My Business)
- Google Maps
- Your website
- Business directories and other third-party sources
- User-contributed content
What is local citation building?
Local citation building is the practice of distributing and maintaining a businessâs information across the internet. This is also referred to as listings management.
Building citations involves:
- Identifying all of your businessâs existing citations across the web
- Claiming your local business listings (where possible) to gain control over them
- Updating outdated or incorrect information on your site and in citations
- Adding new information where necessary
- Removing duplicate or fraudulent business listings
- Creating new business listings in important online directories
How Semrushâs Listing Management tool can help you build local citations
Quickly audit your local citations across the Internet
Luckily, you donât have to find them all yourself, because Semrush can help. All you have to do is set up your business in the Listing Management tool. Then, weâll automatically audit your business data in over 70 U.S. business directories and more than 40 international ones.
Then, weâll tell you:
- Which directories youâre already listed in
- Which listings need to be updated
- Which local and industry-specific directories youâre not currently listed in but should be
Automatically distribute up-to-date business info to the best directories
First, make sure all the business information you need to distribute is correct within Semrush. You can do this by setting up a location within the tool.
If you have more than one business location, you can set up separate locations for each one you want to manage within the tool.
Listing Management will automatically distribute your business details to citation websites youâre eligible for. Once the tool has distributed your information to citation sites, it will monitor each citation to make sure your listing remains correct.
Help customers find you more easily by eliminating misinformation
Listing Management doesnât just find and create citations. It also maintains them. All you have to do is keep your business data up to date within the tool, and weâll make sure all your citations match it.
Weâll even help you find and suppress outdated, inaccurate, or malicious duplicate listings. This way, you donât have to worry about your customers being led astray by bad information.
Improve your listings by incorporating user suggestions
All you have to do is navigate to the User Suggestions tab, and weâll show you all your open suggestions by directory, location, and date. Then, click âapproveâ if the suggestion is more accurate than whatâs already there. Itâs as simple as that!