Citations are an online reference to your business name and address on other WebPages. There may be no link to your website. A good example of a citation can be reference to your business name in an online yellow pages directory where your business is listed.
They can be discovered on local chamber of commerce pages, or on any local business association or directory pages that provides your business information.
Citations play a key role in the ranking algorithms in Google and Bing. Other factors being on the same footing your business with a large number of citations will in all probability rank higher than those businesses with fewer citations.
Citations from reputed and well-indexed portals help boost the extent of certainty the search engines have about your business’s contact information and categorization.
Citations works particularly well in niches where competition is relatively less. Here the service provider does not have websites themselves. Here the service providers do not have a website and the Search Engines depend mainly on no matter what information they can discover.
One great thing about citation is that they authenticate that the business is an integral part of a community. There is less possibility for someone to fake membership in local business index, or being published in a local online newspaper or a popular blog.
Sufficient pointer suggests that citations dramatically improve the local search engine rankings and so there is no harm trying out the way. Even experts agree that the quality of citations can play a crucial role in the rankings matters of search engine optimization is concerned.
Importance of citations for local SEO
The general trend is that importance of citations has to great extent dipped and has lost its credibility to rank highly on Google’s search platform but SEO experts belief that the quality of citations are very significant in local SEO rankings.
Quality citations still plays a major factor in local SEO rankings and when quality is talked about then two things come to the forefront. They are authority and relevance. SEO experts are of the opinion that while quantity is definitely trumped by quality, it however can play a role in improving the likelihood of improved rankings.
A lot of care or wisdom should be exercised to concentrate more on accurate citations secured from highly authoritative and relevant sites before taking into account citations which are from low credibility sites.
How many citations can guarantee to bring in the most desired SEO ranking? Here there is no definite answer and what can be the perfect mix in combination with high quality sites, moderate quality sites and low quality sites.
Furthermore performing some benchmarking tests against competition can offer an insight or a clear picture of the number of citations you would wish to work with.
When building citations a perfect combination of quality and quantity delivers the best outcome for local ranking. Having just one high quality, high authority citation doesn’t offer as much citation value as having 25 citations with mixed authority levels.
There are no fixed guidelines as to how many citations a business should actually have. But it is accepted fact that the best practice is to focus on securing accurate citations on higher authority and relevant sites first and next work down the chain.
At the point when is sufficiently sufficient? Indeed, that relies on upon a large group of different variables; however, observing local ranking performance post-citation work and benchmarking yourself against your competitors will offer you a strong steer on how many you require.
Picking up citation sites
Citation is vital as far as local SEO is concerned. But what is important to note is that picking the perfect citation sites is vital. Local SEO experts that there are three important factors which has to be taken into consideration when evaluating the importance of value of a citation.
1. Domain authority
The overall credibility of the citation site itself.
2. Industry relevance
This is the most vital factor, greater than Doman Authority which is often the default criteria used by many. Industry-specific sites permit search engines the power to properly categorize a business according to its type and the services it offers. Moreover, industry relevance presents a picture of specialist site. Also, industry-specific sites permit for higher ranking in organic results that target specific terms. They are considered as an superb resource of targeted leads to a specific business or organization.
3. Local relevance
It is admitted that though they act like industry –specific sites they lack the specialism needed. This basically translates to content that is less focused, traffic that is less targeted, and lesser ad revenues generated. But there is a definite advantage, local directories do offer, they give a distinct signals to search engine platforms like Google.
It is crystal clear that a good citation strategy is all about a perfect balance. You have to balance quality with quantity and relevancy with authority.
Sites for structured citations
Social and search crawlers finds it easier to identify the information without risking ambiguity when citation is more structured. Keep in mind that when it comes to the authority of citations nothing can be better than those from National Directories.
These are sites characterized by a great volume of website traffic, highly structured and highly-organized classification system of categories and locations and a business model that permits marketing and technology investments. These are the websites which have come to have some credibility. Industry directories are not as commanding as National Directories but they a part to play.
Certainly, collecting and analyzing all of this numerical information can be done, but if you are the owner of a business, you would just want to consider getting the expert services of data aggregators.
Citations still plays an important part in local SEO, but there should be a good balance of both relevance and authoritativeness which is very vital to reap the full benefits of local SEO marketing efforts.