Why Business Listings Matter

Why Business Listings Matter Masters of Marketing Webinar June 26, 2014 #MastersMktg Dylan Brooks SEO Coordinator


Online business listings are important tools for growing your business' visibility on the Internet. A strong business listing profile can help you attract customers and it can help your website to rank highly on search engine result pages.

Transcript of Why Business Listings Matter

Page 1: Why Business Listings Matter

Why Business Listings MatterMasters of Marketing WebinarJune 26, 2014#MastersMktg

Dylan BrooksSEO Coordinator

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What Are Business Listings?

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What are Business Listings?

• A profile of your agency on a directory site• Directory sites come in many sizes and shapes:• Search engine directories (Google My Business, Bing

Places for Business, Yahoo Small Business)• Review-based sites (Yelp)• Electronic phonebooks (YellowPages, SuperMedia)• Location-based social media sites (Foursquare, Facebook)

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Some Directory Sites

• Google MyBusiness (aka Google+ Local)• Bing for Business (aka Bing Local)• Yelp• Foursquare• Facebook• YellowPages• SuperMedia• Merchant Circle• Angie’s List

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Google MyBusiness (or Google+ Local)

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Are Business Listings Really That Important?Yes, they are.

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Benefits of Business Listings

• Give potential customers access to key business information• “Storefront sign” effect

• Good for SEO/search engine visibility• Search engines like websites with consistent business

listings on directory sites

• Help attract customers through the Internet• Business listings include links to your website

Let’s take a closer look at each of these benefits.

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Customer Access

What information are customers looking for when they’re researching agencies on the Internet?

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Customer Access

What information are customers looking for when they’re researching agencies on the Internet?• Location• Contact information• Business hours• Payment options• REVIEWS

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It’s All About Legitimacy

• People want to do business with companies they can trust.• They want to avoid sites like these:

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Building Legitimacy

• Verified listings with key business information shows that your agency has an actual presence in the local community.• Business descriptions can humanize your agency

and emphasize its ties to the region.• Reviews can help reassure potential customers of

what their shopping experience will be like.• “Social Proof”

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Search Visibility

A strong business listing profile can help improve your agency’s placement in search rankings.• But WAIT. How does building listings on other sites help

my website show up in the rankings?

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The “New York Times Effect”

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Business Listings & Search Engines• Search engines evaluate as much information as

they can find about indexed websites before adding them to the results.• If your business information is featured consistently

across several directory sites, it reinforces to search engines that your site is relevant and should be featured highly in search engine result pages.

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Reviews & Search

• Search engines view reviews as customer votes for or against a business.• Reviews on directory sites such as Yelp, Google

MyBusiness and YellowPages are considered “unbiased,” since they’re on third-party sites.• If your agency has consistently strong reviews

across several directory sites, it can help improve the search rankings for your website.

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Local. Local. Local.

• A strong business listing profile can help your website appear in results for searches placed near your address, even for competitive search terms.• Local search results are based off of your location

and business listing data.• Local search is particularly useful and relevant for

smartphone users.

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Local Searches Matter

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Attracting New Customers

• Business listings provide more ways for Internet users to get to your site.

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Why Does This Matter?

• Some Internet users might land on your site through the links from a directory profile• Even if your agency site doesn’t show up in

particular sets of search results, one of your business profiles might appear.• Ultimately, your agency’s Internet visibility will


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Building Business Listings

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Best Practices

• Build lots of business listings• Also claim and optimize existing listings

• Make sure the NAP is consistent• NAP = Name, Address and Phone Number• This will help you appear in local and map-based searches

as well

• Keep business information as consistent as possible• Descriptions, hours, payment options, contact info should

be consistent across all business listings

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What Not To Do

• Create a listing with a fake address• If discovered, phony listings can hurt your website’s

ability to rank in search results.

• Leave inconsistent business information across your various business listings• If you change your hours or other key information, make

sure all business listings are updated.

• Write fake reviews on your directory listings.• Reviews are carefully regulated on many directory sites,

such as Google MyBusiness and Yelp.

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Optimization Tactics

• Encourage visits to business profiles• Add website buttons to link to Yelp, Google+, etc.

• Encourage reviews on business profiles• Email marketing works wonders here.

• Add photos, content and special offers to your business profile sites.• These can help your business listing stand out.

• Think like a potential customer• What would they want you to add to your listings?

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A Few Final Words

• Today’s Webinar will be posted to the ITC Marketing blog:

http://www.getitc.com/blog/marketing/ • Join us for our next Masters of Marketing Webinar:• Benefits of a Mobile-Friendly Website Design• Presented by Amanda Oldham (Website Coordinator)• Thursday, July 24th at 12 PM CDT• To register:


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Thank You!