on September 26, 2022

Haven’t Applied Citations? You are rocking your own ship business .

8 minutes

Developing trust is the key to marketing your company. Citations can assist in building this trust and promoting your company in local SEO rankings and organic search rankings

Business Citation appear everywhere- business directories, social networking sites. Its appearance is at every site where people are asking for products/services. 

What makes it so great that it is considered as the core of Local SEO? What is citation?

What is a Local Seo citation?

If you are a business owner, who is not using citation building, then you should employ this ASAP. 

Local SEO citation is the foundation of Local SEO strategy as it gives NAP (name, address and phone) information. 

This boosts your business and helps in brand visibility. 

What Makes a Great Local Citation?

A great local citation is which develops trust and credibility within consumer as well as Google. Three essential pieces of information concerning your organization must be filled out when creating or claiming a citation in a business directory:

  • Name – Ideally, this should be your trademarked trading name.
  • Local phone number – This needs to be the same as the one provided on your own website.
  • Physical address – Once more, this needs to match the address on your website.

But how does a citation cam bring in traffic?

Why are Citations Important?

The citations importance can be divided into two parts:

  1. Helps in ranking higher
  2. Making your business accessible to people. 

Let’s understand both these points-

  1. It’s unlikely that obtaining local citations from every possible source will significantly affect your local results. However, we still think there is some benefit in obtaining reliable citation sources. In these terms, pertinent websites can be essential where customers would expect to find your company listed.
  1. Google relies on various directories in search of various businesses. So it is imperative to be listed in one of these sites. 

But apart from this, citations helps in ranking in SERPs. Want to know how you can achieve this? Read on!!

How citations can help in SEO?

For local SEO, citations are regarded as a ranking factor. It increases Google’s level of confidence in terms of existence of your company. As it is getting featured in reputable internet directories. 

Google’s perception of your online presence can be influenced by 

  • the number of listings, 
  • the correctness of your listings, and 
  • the caliber of the online directories.

How citations help in discovering your business?

Citations can aid in local SEO because they enable search engines to confirm your company’s validity. Search engines can trust that your company exists and is sincere about the service it offers. Furthermore, the company is registered in the same name, address, and contact details and your brand are readily available online.

Since, we now know the benefits of citations in local SEO. It would be wise to know the types of citations. So, how many types of citations are there and how each of them will boost SEO?

Types of Citation

There are generally two types of citation- structured and unstructured.

Structured Citations 

The most typical kind of local citations are structured citations. They consist of your company’s listings on key business directories and outside websites. These websites are vast, established libraries of search data that Google already respects.

The key to gain business out of the structured citations is being listed on directories relevant to your industry and business location.. This helps Google in understanding your business opportunities. This will help in finding potential customers for you and amplified your search marketing strategy

Unstructured Citations

Unstructured citations are where information is scattered and isn’t grouped together. For example, mention of the business in a news article or a blog with correct NAP citations

Also Read – Things to Avoid in Local Seo

Unstructured citations are helpful for local SEO even if they aren’t as obvious to search engines as the structured version.

Three things affect the worth of unstructured citations:

  • Location
  • Industry relevance
  • Website Authority. 

So let’s talk about this one by one.

Relevance of Unstructured 

Location- if the business is mentioned on a website which has local connections it will gain more popularity and foot traffic. But the mention of business on a website which has no local connection, is as good as nothing.

Industry Relevance: Appearing on directories of relevant industries or niche will help in SEO. This puts a message in front of potential customers. 

Website Authority: This citation will probably be more helpful to you from a website with a low domain authority if the website where it appears has a high domain authority. This is since domain authority is a recognized indicator of a website’s rank ability in Google’s views.

Okay, we get that!! Citations are important. But it would be wise if any business owner can get a grasp on how to do it? So, let’s go!!

Also Read – List of 11 Most Common SEO Mistakes

How do I build citations?

Over here, we will discuss building citations. This can be done in 4 simple steps: 

  • Get listed on data Aggregators site
  • Submit NAP in other core sites
  • Submit to popular local sites
  • Pursue unstructured citations 

First Step:

There are various directories on the web. If each of the businesses start to submit their NAP citations in each of them, then there would be a gap in the data. On top of that, a lot of businesses would not submit in these many directories. 

To solve this, we have data aggregators. These aggregators gather data on businesses and share it with hundreds of other websites. If these people know who you are, you’ll get cited all over the place. 

Some of the data aggregators examples are:

  • Express Update 
  • Neustar Localeze
  • Factual

Step 2:

NAP data is received from various well- known sites which comprises from the “big three” data aggregators, although not all of them. To the main sites in your nation directly is therefore frequently helpful.

These include websites like:

  • Google Maps
  • Facebook
  • Yelp
  • Google Places
  • YellowPages
  • Foursquare

But since all of the above sites are so popular you will hardly get any benefits. Then why should you submit?

Don’t submit to every other site. Sift the worthy site with the help of Google. How can you check that?

If your business is appearing in the top 100 results by typing the keyword +place, then that is the worthy site.

Step 3: 

Following the completion of the “baseline” citations, the next phase is to look for well-liked sector- and location-specific citation opportunities.

For instance, if you own a hotel, you should make sure that TripAdvisor has a listing for you. If you are an attorney, be sure to register with is where you should go if you’re a realtor. You see what I mean. These citation opportunities are particular to the industry.

Your company’s physical location will create more options for citation.

Step 4: 

You have already outperformed majority of the competitors in terms of structured citations by the time you get to this stage. Unstructured citations are something we haven’t really covered yet.

Unstructured citations are an entirely separate animal. They frequently result from press mentions, testimonials, positive reviews and blog entries about your company. These are therefore more difficult to catalog than structured citations.

The above steps are a brief version of building citations. Adding to that, the above steps has some layers to it. Though, it can be done by anyone. 

But wouldn’t it be nice, if it can be done by a professional SEO service company which has mastered the art?

Well, there is 365 Digital who will not only take the responsibility of your rankings. But also help you in giving more time to the growth of products or business. Click the link to visit our website.

Now, we have briefly discussed the building of citations, but there are components of citation which helps in building a great one. So, read on!!

What are the core components of local citations?

The fundamental element of local citations is usually NAP information.

Citations for local SEO may also include:

  • Website of the business. 
  • Contact information. 
  • Travel directions. 
  • Description of the business and its category 
  • Photographs
  • Links to social media addresses.
  • Email address.

From above we can configure that links can also be helpful in increasing organic results. But are links and citations similar?

Links and citations are potent ranking factors for both local and organic search results. But they are similar and different in their own ways. Let’s discuss that.

How are links and citations similar and different?

Links and citations is a confusing term for people as they think both are the same. But it’s important to understand the difference between them. If one of the processes is left out in Local SEO strategy, then a heavy penalty has to be paid. 

If one of them gets better focused then on upside you will be visible in SERPs and downside you will not get any visibility. 

  • They are references which give a boost to business. 
  • Both have the potential to give a negative ranking to your website and that will reduce your E-A-T.
  • Citation has to have NAP but link doesn’t have that criteria.
  • Link is clickable whereas the citation is not.
  • Citations have to be consistent, whereas links can vary.
  • Links improve rankings everywhere whereas citations improve rankings in local results. 

The citation is used for ranking, but we have to feature them in popular sites. 

Popular Local Citation Sites:

You can create listings on a wide variety of directories.

The following are some of the top venues for small firms to build citations:

  • Foursquare
  • Better Business Bureau
  • Localworks
  • MapQuest
  • Yellow Pages
  • Angi
  • City Data
  • Manta

According to backlinko, 92% of search queries with a city and business category have a Yelp page in the top 5 results. Then why, consumers are not using these sites?

What about listing on sites like Google, Facebook, Apple Maps, and Yelp?

The above mentioned are the core sites where citations are referred to. Technically, these are the places where citations always exist. But it has two problems-

  1. It has to be microscopically managed.
  2. The high level of management makes these platforms as part of an engagement layer. 

What are the business benefits of building citations?

Getting listed on business directories is free. Also having positive reviews is like cherry on the top. 

These two things will go a long way in bolstering the business. A cost-effective way to boost your brand. Therefore, listed in these directories will put you in the forefront of customers. 

We have covered almost every topic we can think of in citations. But if also some are left we have covered in terms of FAQs. So here they are.

Frequently Asked Questions

1) How do they work in Local SEO?

They build trust and credibility. Citations are thought to aid search engines in confirming your company’s existence, authenticity, and dependability. If the same details are found in the company’s website, then you are good to go. Google has gained their confidence on the existence and operationality of your business.

2) What are the different sorts of citations?

Local citations include, for instance:

  • general directories of businesses
  • Sector-specific, industry-specific, or specialist directories (Trip Advisor)
  • websites for regional publications and newspapers
  • Locally focused blogs – LeftLion, for instance, is excellent for local nightlife establishments like bars, pubs, clubs, and restaurants
  • Social networking platforms like FourSquare, Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube

3) How can I find other local citation opportunities?

They can be found by

  1. Learning where your competitors are listed. 
  2. Invest in paid/free tools who will send out
  •  directory requests on your behalf, 
  • set up the citation and 
  • conduct competitor’s backlink analysis.

4) What is Brightlocal?

BrightLocal will send out directory requests on your behalf after setting up a paid citation burst, which just takes a few minutes.

5) What’s the problem with inaccurate business listings?

The problem with inaccurate citations is that they could make Google have less faith in your company. Contradictory information may be construed as deceptive, and this is frequently the result of seemingly tiny variations in spelling and abbreviations.


Local SEO helps in building E-A-T. It helps in obtaining a niche in your market, improves your website’s authority, and sends trust signals. Therefore, which improves rankings. 

If you want to build a niche and develop expertise, you can use ways listed below to build some authority:

  • Post as a guest on local blogs
  • Participate in forum posting
  • Sponsor local events
  • Collaborate with local influencers by getting in touch with them.
  • Respond to pertinent Quora questions and include a link to your website.
  • Engage in social media activity by participating in contests.

We have come to the very end of the blog, and all we want to say is that citations are a core part of SEO. Additionally, you must perfect your 

  • on-page SEO
  • conduct appropriate keyword research, and 
  • improve your Google My Business profile.


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