SEO Citations Study: How Do Businesses Get Citations?

Before we fully tackle how do businesses get citations, let’s first identify what a citation is. Citations typically refer to website, name, address, or phone number in some combination on the web. Some call citations as a business’ thumbprint. Citations are crawled by Google. 

There are two types of citations: traditional directory citation and unstructured citations. Traditional citations mean that the NAP is stated obviously. However, in unstructured citations, the NAP or URL may be just mentioned somewhere and yet the search engine still picked it up and made it attributed to you. These citations help businesses and websites to boost search engine visibility, as well as their rankings. They contribute as a ranking factor for search engines.

Now, how do businesses get citations?

Business citations are commonly displayed in NAP (Name, Address, Phone No.) format. Make sure to keep your NAP listings consistent to avoid confusion to the crawlers and make them trust your business. Having consistent business NAP listing makes your business considered by search engines as real. 

But this is not as easy as it sounds. Owners should keep the following reminders in mind to avoid mistakes:

Name: You have to make it 100% consistent: without changes or added words and such. This will make search engines recognize your name as true, as well as your business’s existence. 

If not done properly, different search engines might get confused and consider your business’ names as different business entities. 

Location: Like the Name, you have to make this consistent as well. And when I mean consistent, what we mean is PERFECTLY consistent. You wouldn’t like search engines to get confused about minor things like “St.” and “Street’. So before putting your address, decide on what format are you going to use. 

Phone Number: Like with the two factors mentioned above, consistency is the key here as well. Things might get complicated if you provide different nos. on different listings. This could lead search engines to consider different numbers as a different business. Which you certainly wouldn’t want to happen.

rank top on google

Before we fully tackle how do businesses get citations, let’s first identify what a citation is. Citations typically refer to website, name, address, or phone number in some combination on the web. Some call citations as a business’ thumbprint. Citations are crawled by Google. 

There are two types of citations: traditional directory citation and unstructured citations. Traditional citations mean that the NAP is stated obviously. However, in unstructured citations, the NAP or URL may be just mentioned somewhere and yet the search engine still picked it up and made it attributed to you. These citations help businesses and websites to boost search engine visibility, as well as their rankings. They contribute as a ranking factor for search engines.

Before we fully tackle how do businesses get citations, let’s first identify what a citation is. Citations typically refer to website, name, address, or phone number in some combination on the web. Some call citations as a business’ thumbprint. Citations are crawled by Google. 

There are two types of citations: traditional directory citation and unstructured citations. Traditional citations mean that the NAP is stated obviously. However, in unstructured citations, the NAP or URL may be just mentioned somewhere and yet the search engine still picked it up and made it attributed to you. These citations help businesses and websites to boost search engine visibility, as well as their rankings. They contribute as a ranking factor for search engines.

Google My Business Listing

You may not be aware since this is actually not considered as a citation. Why? Well, it’s because Google is considered as a fundamental asset. And because of this reason, you have to make sure you list your business on Google My Business and make sure to maximize it. 

Cored Structured Citations

Different directories, search engines, and applications offer distinct structures for list building. But there are some core platforms that are with quality that any type of business could get listed. Some of these can be used for free but others are paid. 

Make sure not to have duplicate listings on any of the core citations. You can manage it all by yourself or just hire someone to do that for you. 

To give you a better example, here are some of the quality platforms you can list from in the US:

  • Apple Maps
  • Bing
  • Acxiom 
  • Factual
  • Foursquare
  • Facebook
  • Infogroup
  • Localeze
  • Yelp

With all the information provided, you just need to know now what are the things that you should avoid in citations. 

Providing old/outdated NAP

Different directories, search engines, and applications offer distinct structures for list building. But there are some core platforms that are with quality that any type of business could get listed. Some of these can be used for free but others are paid. 

Make sure not to have duplicate listings on any of the core citations. You can manage it all by yourself or just hire someone to do that for you. To give you a better example, here are some of the quality platforms you can list from in the US:

  • Apple Maps
  • Bing
  • Acxiom 
  • Factual
  • Foursquare
  • Facebook
  • Infogroup
  • Localeze
  • Yelp

With all the information provided, you just need to know now what are the things that you should avoid in citations. 

Typos & Wrong NAP

This is like the Outdated NAP situation. To avoid this, double-check your information before publishing it on directories.

Duplicate Information

Avoid this by checking your listings and removing any duplicate listings. Duplicate listing typically has real information and a misleading one which will cause confusion to search engines and potential customers. 

By finishing this, you’re already aware of the primary steps on how businesses get citations and you can start having yours too. Good luck with your business!