When it comes to local SEO, citations are almost the equivalent to backlinks in organic SEO. Improving the authority and volume of your citation portfolio (the total makeup of your citations) is one of the best ways to improving your rankings in Google local search results (Google Maps).
One of the most common questions I hear is how do I improve the citations to my local business?
And hopefully this article will help to answer that question and put you on the path to higher rankings in Google local search.
Two citation distribution platforms for higher Google Maps rankings
We use Moz Local to gain citation distribution for our clients in the four major local business data hubs. The four primary sources for local business data used by all major search engines are: Infogroup, Acxiom, Localeze, and Factual.
These four data sources are used by major mapping applications such as Bing, Apple Maps, Google Maps, and Facebook.
Getting your citations accurately published in these four data sources can help you scale the distribution of your local business data across hundreds, even thousands, of local business end points. And since you can control the accuracy of your local business data in Moz Local, you can control the accuracy of your business data in these four major sources.
The downside to Moz Local is the speed in which distribution is achieved. We’ve seen it take as long as 6 months to achieve 100% distribution in the four major data sources with Moz Local.
But, it’s well worth the wait to achieve the authority of these distribution end points.
We use Yext to achieve speed and efficiency in the distribution of our client’s local business data. With Yext, you get instant access to 55+ local business directories. Your local business data will also be distributed to major mapping applications such as Google Maps, Apple Maps, Facebook, Bing, Yahoo, & Yelp.
When using a combination of both Moz Local and Yext as your local business citation strategy, it’s important to make sure your local business data are exact matches in both systems.
See a full list of our data end point partners for citation distribution.
If you have a discrepency between Moz Local and Yext, you can end up with a large scale of inconsistent data published across the web.
And this inconsistency can cause downward pressure on your local rankings in Google Maps.
The best way to ensure your local business data is accurate in both platforms is to use your Google My Business listing as the starting point.
Make sure your profiles in both Yext and Moz Local are exact matches to your Google My Business listing.
I hope this article was helpful as you work to improve your rankings in Google local search and Google Maps.
Let me know your questions and comments below.
And if you need help with this process, just let us know.