75 Local Citation Sources Prioritized

local citations for local seo rankings

For Local SEO purposes, having local citations for your business is considered to be one of the most important factors in getting your Website to rank higher in Google’s newly modified local results section. A local citation is a link from an “authoritative” directory, review site or internet yellow pages site linking to your Website. In other cases, the citation can be a listing for your business on another site that matches (and therefore validates) the information on your site such as the address or phone number.

The problem is that there are so many possible local citation sites to choose from that it can be very time-consuming to get your company listed in each one. With that in mind, I was looking for a fairly easy way to prioritize the different options so I (and my clients and readers) would waste less time and would be able to focus on the most impactful ones.

Prioritizing the Potential Local Citation Sources:

So, in order to get a quick and dirty prioritized list of sites for local citations, here is the process I followed:

  1. I had already collected a long list of sites for citations that I use (or had planned to use), so I just made sure I had a broad enough list by pulling in a few more possible sites.
  2. I ran individual searches in Google that included the terms “SEO” and “Local Citation” or “Local Citations” and “Possible Citation Site (fill in blank here)”. My theory was that this would give me the number of search results for articles discussing SEO AND that listed where to get the best local citations AND that included the “possible citation source” in the article. These would be like votes for each potential citation source (in a very rough sense) giving me a way to prioritize them.
  3. I ranked the Possible Citation Sources based on how many search results came up in Google for each one based on #2 above.

I focused mainly on general directories, internet yellow pages (IYP’s) and social networking/review sites versus more specialized sites like Zagat.com or UrbanSpoon.com (for restaurants).  I also spot checked the results and pulled out some potential citation sources that seemed to have lots of results for the wrong reasons.  As a note, most of these local citation sources will be most effective for businesses with a local address that you don’t mind displaying. Also, note that you should use a consistent business name, address and phone number in all citation sources and on your Website.

local citations research approach screenshot

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Enjoy and let us know what’s missing in the comments!

The List of Citation Sources:

Without including a “possible citiation source” in the search, the total number of results was 9,300. The first few sites below show up in a very high percentage of those 9,300 results (for example, Google Places shows up in 44% of the results). Take a look an let me know what you think in the comments below. Anything missing?

1) Google Places

Probably the most important and most talked about place to list your local business. Getting citations from many of the sites below (as well as ratings) can help boost your business’ listing in Google.

2) Yelp

The most popular social networking, directory and review site. Aside from counting as a citation for your business in the eyes of the search engines, this site can deliver quite a bit of traffic on it’s own. Business-owners need to learn to deal with the occasional nasty review.

3) foursquare

The popular way to check in via your smart phone can also provide a valuable citation for your local business.

4) Univeral Business Listing

A multiple local listing service – UBL.org (along with Localeze below) is one of the major players in the effort to fill in your information once to get listed with multiple yellow pages sites, directories and social networking/review sites. Saves time and effort but may be slower than going direct with the individual sites (see Localeze and InfoUSA below as well)

5) Yahoo Local

Yahoo’s local directory tied to Yahoo Maps.

6) Local.com local.com citation

Business listings, event listings, coupons and reviews.

7) CitySearch citysearch local citation ranking

One of the most authoritative local directories.

8) Bing Local bing local citation

Bing’s local business listing service tied integrated with maps of cities and towns.

9) CraigsList craigs-list-local-citation

Some SEO’s recommend creating classifieds for your business on popular classified sites such as Craigslist. There’s some disagreement over whether this is effective from an SEO point of view.

10) GetListed.org

Convenient way to identify where you’re listed (and where you’re not) in major directories. Provides referrals to Universal Business Listings and Localeze as well as consultants (if you need extra help).

11) dmoz (Open Diretory Project)

A free and authoritative index (in the eyes of Google) that is managed by volunteers. If you can get your business listed, this helps with an authoritative backlink (but not necessarily a local citation). It can be difficult to get a new listing due ot the limited resources and large volumes of submissions.

12) Superpages

One of the many Internet Yellow Pages directories (IYP). Includes business listings, people search, reviews and local deals.

13) Localeze

A multiple local listing service.

14) InfoUSA

A multiple local listings service.

15) Your local Chamber of Commerce

Joining your local chamber of commerce or can often get you a business listing (and a citation for local SEO purposes).

16) InsiderPages

Local directory and rating site

17) Merchant Circle

Local directory and rating site

18) Best of the Web

A popular directory with free and paid listing options – specifically for local, they have a Best of the Web Local directory

19) Yellowpages.com

Internet yellow pages (also YP.com)

20) Business.com

Business.com provides business information but also has a business directory.

21)Kudzu

Business review site (like Yelp)

22) Better Business Bureau

Your local Better Business Bureaus usually charge for membership and provide a link to your business.

23) DexKnows

Business and people directory

24) Acxiom

A major source of data for various yellowpages and directories – they don’t take business submissions like some of the other data providers or multiple local listings services.

25) Your local newspaper’s Website

Getting an article, business listing or classified ad optimized with your local information and a link can provide a citation for your business.

26) Yellowbook.com

Internet yellow pages

27) HotFrog

A business directory with free and fairly inexpensive paid listing options

28) Crunchbase

A listing of technology companies that is user-generated

29) Angie’s List

Service provider directory

30) Judy’s Book

Local review site

31) Jigsaw

Business people and company directory

32) ibegin

US and Canadian business directory

33) OpenList

Local directory with ratings

34) wikimapia

Wiki-based directory of places including schools, businesses, and more – laid out on maps

35) citysquares

Local business directory with ratings

36) Infospace

Business and people listings.

37) magicyellow

A straightforward internet yellow pages directory

38) whitepages.com

People and business listings

39) Manta

Company profiles

40) EZLocal

Local business listings and ratings

41) BrownBook

Local business listings and ratings

42) CityVoter

Vote for favorite businesses

43) ShopCity

Local business listings

44) YellowBot

Local listings and ratings

45) MojoPages

Social networking and review site (like Yelp)

46) Tupalo.com

International social networking and review site

47) Praized

Social networking and review site

48) Panoramio

Pictures associated with maps. Geotag images, upload to Panoramio and add them to your Google Places listings.

49) GetFave

Business directory, including featured listings (with additional content such as videos, pictures)

50) BizJournals

Business journal that includes business directories for certain US cities

51) Tjoos

Online store listings and coupons

52) JoeAnt

Webiste directory

53) Zidster

Products, services or business listings

54) TrueLocal

Business directory – seems to have sparse listings

55) ZipLeaf

Network of international business directories

56) WCities

Places and events for cities and towns, including ratings

57) Naymz

Personal branding site

58) Zoominfo

Database of people and companies

59) Yellowikis

Wiki-based business directory

60) gomylocal

Yellow pages/local directory

61) Fast Pitch Network

Online business networking site

62) City Slick

Free business directory

63) Busiverse (also businessdb)

Business directory

64) yellowpages.lycos.com

A general directory

65) Service Magic

Directory of service companies (includes a “seal of approval”)

66) Local forums

Forums focused on local areas

67) Mcrae’s Blue Book

Industrial directory

68) MatchPoint

Directory of service providers

69) USCity.net

Directory focused on the U.S.

70) Metrobot

County street maps

71) Google Custom Maps

“Create personalized, annotated, customized maps using Google Maps”. Listing businesses in custom maps may help them in ranking for local search.

72) Yellowee (formerly Genie Knows)

Local review site

73) AskCity

Ask.com’s local directory

74) Tyloon

Billed as International Yellow Pages (including multi-lingual listings)

75) Discover Our Town

“the ultimate US travel, tourism and relocation guide”

Do you see anything that surprises you? Are there any biggies missing? Leave your input, ideas or other good resources in the comments below.

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