In the early years of SEO, directories were an easy and popular ranking tactic. They were a popular way of obtaining links, for a number of reasons. Not only was it very easy to submit websites to dozens of directories at a time, but it was also a low-cost and it worked.
Times have changed...
Directories are less of a ranking factor now. Google is continuing to remove many of the free website directories from their index. Keep in mind, the largest and most trusted directories will remain a ranking factor and have some impact on your rankings.
Directories and local SEO
As smartphone use grows, searches are becoming more localized. Maps and voice search are allowing users to find businesses close to them easier than ever before. As a result, local SEO is a crucial part of any SEO strategy.
Improving your local SEO is key if you want to appear in Google map results and on the first page for Google searches in your area.
There are several ranking factors when it comes to Local SEO, but the most important are the quantity and quality of your business’ citations. A citation for your business is any instance of its name, address and phone number (NAP).
Your business doesn’t only need to be listed, it needs to be listed with the exact same information every time. That means same name, same address, same hours, etc. The more times these elements are listed correctly in high quality directories, the more Google trusts your business.
What directories do you need to be listed in?
It’s not the number of directories that your business should be listed in, it’s the quality of those directories. Much like content - quality is key, not quantity.
You should focus on the following directories:
- Google My Business
- Bing Places
- Yellow Pages
- Yahoo Local
- Local Stack
- Four Square
How do your citations stack up?
Take a visit to each of the above links and make sure that your listing is accurate and current. Check the address, phone number, hours, location on the map etc. Ensure complete accuracy because even the smallest of errors jeopardizes the trust.
Original Source: VGI