02/06/2023 Digital, Marketing and Public Relations

Marketing Like a Local with Local SEO and Citations

New name. New logo. New tagline. New you. Over the years, we’ve witnessed (and executed) plenty of effective rebranding projects that add new life to existing organizations. When properly executed, this marketing facelift can revitalize your business. But if you’ve left outdated information on the web, you can struggle to keep current clients, let alone attract new ones. You need a local SEO and citation strategy to seize your moment and control in the local market.

After all, about 97% of people learn about local businesses online.

What is local SEO?

At its core, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) strategy involves creating tailor-made content for higher organic search engine rankings (i.e., Google, Bing, etc.). A local SEO strategy puts those efforts under a microscope. This should be a key focus for businesses with brick-and-mortar locations to increase foot traffic and awareness in their local communities.

To improve local SEO strategies beyond citations: 

  1. Optimize your Google Business Profile.
  2. Claim social media on your website.
  3. Add location pages/maps to your website.
  4. Link to and secure links on websites of local businesses.
  5. Ensure your website is mobile-friendly.

Oh, and make sure your local citations are in order across the web! Local SEO is BIG for brands wanting to build a local presence, and citations are a critical piece of the local SEO puzzle. 

Wait…so what the heck are local citations?

That’s an easy one. Local citations are any online mention of your business and its information. Most commonly, the info you should focus on is your business name, address and phone number, a.k.a. N.A.P. When building strong local citations, you never want to sleep on N.A.P.

Local citations information can also include the following:

  • Hours of operation
  • Description of your business
  • Business logo
  • Images of your business
  • Email address

Establishing this information across the web allows search engine crawlers to verify that your business is legitimate and boost SEO. This will help you be served in search results to the 78% of customers who conduct weekly online searches for local businesses. 

It is important to note that there are two types of local citations: structured and unstructured.

Structured citations are more formal. These citations are built into databases/directories, like Google Business Profile, Yellow Pages and Yelp. Think of structured citations as similar to phonebook listings – not advertisements or promotions, but a source of contact information. While you can build these listings manually, it may be simpler to work with an aggregator like Moz Local, which will automatically submit listings to hundreds of sites.

Unstructured citations are closer to media mentions. These citations still contain all the relevant N.A.P. points but in a less formal matter. An excellent example of this could be an article someone wrote about your business. Ideally, your name, address and phone number are included in the write-up, though they may be scattered across the text. SEO web crawlers will still pick this up!

Pro Tip: Consistency is key to building reputable, trusted local citations. Make sure your information is presented the same way across the board, no matter where you are listing.

TRIO’s strategies help your business take flight!

Navigating the SEO world can sometimes feel like a whirlwind. That’s why Team TRIO is always ready to help businesses’ web presence take flight with more than 20 years of creative and digital marketing expertise. Contact us today to take your web strategy above and beyond.

Caroline Hendry

Caroline Hendry

Digital Marketing Specialist

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