Map Pinpoints - Local Listings - Cover Photo

Late last year, we released Local Listings, a tool that helps your business or group get listed in over 100 online directories with just a few clicks.

Limited time: Save 20% on Local Listings with the code LOCAL20 at checkout! Click here.

Recently, we’ve talked about the importance of local search for small businesses and how local search differs from Search Engine Optimization (SEO).

So by now you know that showing up in local searches is incredibly important for your business. But do you know what to include in your local search listings?

To help you cover all your bases, we’ve put together these 10 best practices to help ensure that not only will you show up in local searches, you’ll show up first!

1. Use a consistent business name

Sounds simple, right? However, we see many business listings with slightly (and sometimes very) different names on different directories.

For example, your business could be listed as “Joe’s Seafood” on Google, but on Yelp, you’re listed as “Joe’s Nantucket Seafood” or “Joe’s Seafood LLC”.

These minor name differences might be easy for you or me to interpret as the same business, but algorithms sometimes don’t have the same judgment and may interpret these as different companies.

If they see them as different businesses, they may not show up in a search for Seafood in Nantucket.

2. Upload a photo with your listing

Nothing hurts a Yelp or Google Plus profile more than a blank photo area.  People searching Yelp for local businesses spend 2.5 more time on a Yelp Listing with Photos.

Our Local Listings tool makes it easy to upload a logo or photo of your business once and get that photo submitted everywhere.

Small Business Listings - Logo Upload Screenshot

3. Link to your website

Believe it or not, many directory listings don’t include a link to the business’s website.  Although directory listings may provide enough information for some prospective customers, make sure to have a link to your website for those who want to learn more.

4. Pick categories for your business

Directory sites like Yelp and YP.com rely on category groupings like “Italian Restaurant” or “Portrait Photographer” to provide accurate search results to users.  If you don’t submit categories for your business, your business will rank more poorly in search results.

Choose Categories Screenshot

5. Make your business listing pop with a description

Once you’ve covered all of the basics, write a brief description on your business (2-3 sentences).

Car Guyz Collision Center does a great job of this with their YP.com profile. They cover the main details on their service and quickly show that they are experts in the field of auto repair.

General Info Screenshot

6. Post your hours

Have you ever showed up at a business only to find out that it was closed?  Don’t you wish this information was available when you searched and found that business online?

Make sure your customers never encounter this issue by submitting your open hours with your listing.  Open 24 Hours? Make sure to mark that too!

Post Hours Screenshot

7. List payment methods

How can your customers pay you?  Do you only accept cash or do you accept all major credit cards?

Don’t lose customers at the point of sale because they didn’t know in advance.

8. Get reviewed!

Once you’ve submitted your Local Listings profiles, let your customers know that they can find you on Yelp, Google, and YP.com.

If you’ve provided a positive experience, this should lead to reviews.  Businesses with positive reviews are significantly more likely to show up in search results and get clicked on more often by prospective customers.

In fact, a study published in the Economic Journal showed just an extra half a star on a restaurant’s rating can make that restaurant 30 to 49% more likely to sell out its tables for that evening.

Quarry House Tavern Review

9. Show your longevity

Most directories provide the opportunity to enter the date you started your business.  Don’t skip this seemingly small field!

Customers trust businesses that have been around for many years and most directories display this information prominently.

10. Se habla Español? Let the people know!

Prospective customers often look for businesses they can identify with.

If you or your staff is multilingual, let visitors to your directory listings know they’ll feel at home with your business.

If you follow our 10 Local Listings best practices and submit your business through Webs Local Listings service, you’ll be sure to improve your local search rankings in no time!

Let us know how you stay at the top of your local search results and if there are any other best practices that you follow for your small business.

About the Author: Alex Mitchell is a Product Manager at Webs focused on Site Optimization, Internationalization, Localization, and all other –ations. Find more from Alex on Google+.

8 Responses

  1. Reply
    dani
    Feb 26, 2015 - 04:49 AM

    nice article … appraise your research and smart work… 🙂

  2. Reply
    Alex
    Feb 26, 2015 - 05:11 PM

    Thanks Dani, glad you found it helpful!

  3. Reply
    Tim Barton
    Mar 21, 2015 - 07:24 AM

    Webs thank you for all you do for the small business!!!! Couldn’t do it with out you!!!

  4. Reply
    Thomas Rago, II
    Mar 24, 2015 - 01:07 PM

    Thank you well done on the read not over done.

  5. Reply
    Randy Sod
    Apr 03, 2015 - 03:20 PM

    Great Article, I was impressed with the amount of information and research. Keep Blogging!

    • Reply
      Alex
      Apr 03, 2015 - 03:51 PM

      Thanks Randy!

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