If you’ve checked into listing your business with local directories at all you’ll know there are a lot of them out there. But because there are so many local listing sites it can get really confusing about which ones are better than others. In fact it can really make your head swim. But to be found locally you really need them. So to make it a little simpler for you we’ve broken the types of local listing sites into different categories.
1. Search Engines:
Google, Yahoo, and Bing as always are the leaders. The simple reason for this is that they get the most local searches. So make sure your business is listed in Google Places, Yahoo Local, and Bing Local. Each one will want to confirm your listing either through a phone call or in the mail but you definitely want your business listed here.
2. Local Yellow Pages:
Here the players are websites such as SuperPages.com, Dex, and YP.com. There are more local listing sites out there of course. These are just some examples. Now your local yellow pages are still very important for your listing. Not only do they get local traffic searching just like in the old phonebook days but the bigger search engines use the data that you provide to these guys to verify your listing. That’s why it’s important to make sure your message is consistent. If you provide a different name to SuperPages.com than you gave to Google Places you can hurt your local search results and confuse searchers.
3. Local Meta Search Engine:
Your first question here is probably, “what is a local meta search engine”? The easy answer is think “MapQuest”. These sites scour the internet looking for data to provide their users. So while they are not the most important place to get listed such a listing can help you. As a bonus such sites are often overlooked by business owners so you can help yourself out even more by using them.
4. Local Business Data Providers:
Here we have companies that provide data to other sites such as directories otherwise known as citations. One company for example where you can get listed is InfoUSA and they actually provide data to MapQuest and Yahoo Yellow Pages.
So through these types of sites you can actually get listed on many more local listing sites with only one actual listing being created. Another alternative for getting listed on directories quickly is Yext which allows for quick citation/directory building. The downside of Yext is that you have to pay them monthly to keep the citations. Fail to pay them and the citations are removed. If you want citations built quickly and permanently then Marketers Center is a good alternative to Yext
5. Local Review Sites:
In today’s internet world reviews of your business whether you want them or not are becoming a fact of life. In fact providing a place for customers to post their reviews has become big business. So there are plenty of places where your customer can submit a review about your business and their experience either good or bad. Some of the bigger names in this game are Yelp, Kudzu, and CitySquares. Each site allows its members to submit reviews about your business and those reviews will show up in local search results.
There are a lot of local listing sites out there on the web. The goal here is just to give you a little better understanding of the differences between them. Otherwise when you are submitting all of your listings you may start to wonder, what’s the point?