Citations in search engine optimization are essentially online references to your business’ name, address, and phone number. In technical terms, this is called a NAP reference. A NAP citation is different from your standard link-building strategy, as a citation doesn’t need to be a direct link to your business website. It can simply be a plain text statement that mentions your correct business information to potential customers, such a reference from a business directory.
As we now enter 2019, we are looking ahead to brand new SEO strategies and we can ponder how citations will influence the visibility game as we move through the next 12 months. Experts believe that citations won’t play a prominent role in SEO when it comes to strategies that will make you stand out more from your local competitors, according to Bright Local.
Instead, it seems that citations may play a much bigger role in determining your SEO strategy when it comes to local visibility. If you are a local business and you want to dominate your local searches, citations are a must. Experts reveal that citations should be part of your SEO foundation if you want to stand a chance at winning in your local visibility game.
In other words, if you are a local business and you don’t have citations in place, you can’t even have a seat at the table. Your local SEO strategy will fall flat.
So, why bother if it doesn’t mean anything for your overall SEO strategy? Not everything you do with SEO is related to how you show up in Google. Your customers play a huge role in your SEO strategy, whether you like it or not. Citations play an invaluable role in providing trust and building relationships with potential customers. Remember, word of mouth remains one of the best ways of marketing your business.
Still not convinced about citations and customers? Then take this into consideration:
93% of consumers revealed in a recent survey by Bright Local that they were frustrated with incorrect information in online directories. A correct citation could have sent 93% of consumers to the right business.
In addition, in the last year alone, 71% of consumers had a negative experience, simply because of an incorrect citation with the wrong business information. That’s a high number of dissatisfied customers.
22% of consumers revealed that they were sent to the wrong location because the citations for the business were wrong.
All of that business is out the window. The trust is broken.
So, how do you fix that?
You start by adding citations to build a strong SEO foundation. Think of press releases, website footers, bylines on articles, question/answer sites, image and video descriptions, and even in your forum or online signatures. Citations are, without a doubt, crucial for SEO success in 2019. It’s all about going beyond search engines and addressing the needs of your consumers.
Contact TAG today to learn more about how we can help you with your citations and your overall SEO strategy for 2019.