SEARCH ENGINE OPTIMIZATION (SEO)

More Web Traffic with Local Business Directories | DIY SEO TIPS

Mike Watson – Brantford, ON

7th October 2019

Everyone wants more web traffic, right? More traffic means more connections, and more connections means more impact. So where do you start and focus your energies?

It’s not a simple question. There are over 200 factors that Google takes into consideration when deciding on page ranking for your website, and Google doesn’t publish a recipe for it’s secret sauce that has made it a verb for searching online.

So if you are a small business that is managing it’s own website and want to attract more visitors, where do you even start?

Even if I spoke German I’m not sure I would know where to start!

Photograph CCO Public Domain.

Local Business Directories are a great place to begin your DIY SEO journey.

Adding your business information to a business directory is easy, requires no coding skills, and makes up a distinct sector of Google’s page ranking calculations.

Local Directories are one of the simplest ways to get more web traffic to your site; both for helping your page ranking and providing an extra (and direct) avenue for people to find your webpage.

Google is in the business of serving up the best possible response to internet user’s queries. It is the bedrock of their multi-billion dollar business model. They want to show the most accurate responses, and look (or “crawl”) across the entire internet to collect information and make the most informed decision possible. In a nutshell, these calculations are how they have been able to become a verb and dominate the internet.

If your business is listed in more places than a competitor, Google factors that into their overall decision about where to place your website in their search results. It by no means is the determining factor – there are hundreds of page ranking factors in play – but is an important and foundational one none-the-less.

So which directories should you go and list your business with? There is no official information from Google as to which are the most important in their calculations, but as SEO is a multi-billion dollar industry in itself, there is some great research out there that provides a pretty good estimate of where you should spend your time and what you can perhaps ignore.

Most Valuable Business Directories To Get Started:

1. Google My Business

2. Facebook

3. Bing Places

4. Yelp

5. 411.ca

6. Hotfrog

7. Best Of The Web (BOTW)

8. LinkedIn

9. Cylex

10. Websites.ca

 

So where’s the catch? Well, search engine’s like Google and Bing want your data to serve up to potential customers, and so adding your information to their services helps them provide more accurate and relevent information. Users may choose to interact with your business as a result, and by listing your information, you provide Google with another reference point to confirm that you are who you say you are; making your website a reliable choice for them to show as a high ranking search result. It is a true win-win.

Some services require a fee to be listed – while some of these services can give your webpage a sizable bump in the rankings, it is unlikely many actual, local people are visiting their directory in search of your services. I generally stay away from these services, but there are some noted exceptions such as BOTW.org (Best Of The Web) that provide a  tried and tested boost. If you are going to pay for a local directory listing, this is a good one to start with.

Keeping your information accurate and consistent across all directories is also extremely important in order for search engine’s like Google to trust your information. If you have even a small difference between directories (IE an opening hour change, a phone number or slight discrepancy in how your business name is listed), Google begins to doubt how accurate the information they are about to serve up actually is. This can be time consuming and difficult to track, and many business owners looking to perform DIY website administration lack the time to do this.

How are you business directory listings looking? If you found this post useful or gained some traction from registering with any of the above, I would love to hear from you!

Good luck on your DIY SEO journey!

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