Top Free Online Directories
Nowadays, promoting a local business is challenging.
It's all too easy to believe that no one will see your business in the local search results, whether it's due to oversaturation or intricate search engine algorithms.
Fortunately, there is a simple technique to boost your local SEO. All you have to do is register your company with online directories like Yellow Pages, Manta, etc. This is known as citation building, and it's an integral part of a local marketing plan.
Google is increasingly placing itself between consumer and local company websites. Google My Business, Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP), highlighted snippets, and, most crucially, local packs are all examples of this.
You can ensure that you appear in these local packs when consumers search for businesses like yours in their area by accumulating citations. Although business directories may seem obsolete, they are an excellent method to expand your web visibility.
What is the definition of a business directory?
A local business directory includes critical information about your company, such as hours, location, and contact information, as well as photographs and other pertinent information (e.g., reviews or other links). They might be as local as a free local Jewish business directory in Baltimore or worldwide as Google Business (the largest and most influential business directory).
To increase visibility, list your local company's NAP (Name, Address, Phone Number) on directories, online business listing sites, and citation sites. These can help your search engine rankings in addition to improving your local SEO because the listings usually link back to your site.
Once you've added your company to a directory, make sure it has the necessary information:
- Consistent NAP. Ensure you're supplying the same company information across all directories if you create or update your firm on various sites.
- You should provide a link to your website. Backlinks, also known as inbound links, are critical to the Domain Rating of your company's website. Consider including a tracking link at the end of this URL so you can track how much traffic your site receives from the business directories that link to it.
- A brief description of the business. Make sure you have a clear description of your company that reflects your company's mission, culture, and values.
- Multimedia. Give potential customers a visual representation of your company by including a photo or video of your office, workers, or daily operations.
You can submit your information to various location-specific and industry-specific company listing sites. However, you should begin by promoting your local business on the more critical sites and work your way down to the more specialized directories.
What are the advantages of registering with a local business directory?
One of the most effective methods for converting the curious into buyers is local business directories. That's not all, though. The following are some of the other advantages of using local business directories:
- Building backlinks: Google looks at the amount and quality of sites that link to yours (backlinks) and ranks your site accordingly. A higher rank in organic search results can be achieved by having more and better quality backlinks.
- Increased site traffic: The top three local listings receive 60% of all visitors, with the number one position receiving half of that. When done correctly, local business directories can increase the number of visitors to your website.
- Visibility for your industry: If your company provides a unique but essential service, a free local listing can help people find you when advertising isn't an option.
The most significant local business directories that are completely free
Make sure your company has a business name or a DBA ("doing business as") classification before you start. A dedicated business address and a phone number corresponding to your location are also required (get a free one on Google Voice). It's a good idea to start with a few directories. You don't have to list your company in every guide to get good results — only the most relevant ones to you.
A complimentary local business directory's web reputation is essential. Here are 10 of my favorites, all of which have a solid reputation and a large following.
Google receives almost six billion queries per day. Keep your listing updated by updating it (and remember to do so for numerous places). If you're only going to fill out one directory, make it Google.
Whether you have one location or 100+ franchises, Moz's local directory can help.
Although Yelp is one of the more divisive free local business directories, it has 178 million monthly users, so don't overlook it. This is especially true for restaurants and businesses that provide services, such as hair salons and fitness studios.
Angie's List lets you focus on your customer base by placing your local business in a specified category (e.g., lawyers, plumbing, etc.).
Foursquare allows you to change your status on your profile (a great feature in today's social media-obsessed world!).
Superpages and Yellowpages have teamed up to give you more bang for your buck regarding free local business listings.
A basic listing on Yahoo! Local is free, but if you pay $30 a month, they will add you to 40 more directories.
City-Data blends free local business directories with regional discussion forums covering various issues (including recommendations for businesses).
With a domain authority score of 100, you can't overlook Facebook's free local business directories (a perfect score, natch).
Although Bing is not as large as Google, it is still large enough (and necessary enough) for a local listing.
Where can I look for more local business directories?
The free business directories listed above are global, but what if you want more targeted and local? Consider the following:
- Make sure your search engine's parameters are correct for your location and then look for "top local directories."
- Use your location along with one of the following terms or phrases to find what you're looking for: Add your site, business, or recommended links to the directory.
It's still a good idea to put your business on a few of the more extensive directories, even if you genuinely want to focus on staying small and servicing your neighborhood with hyperlocal directories.
While getting your business included in free local business directories can help your bottom line, we know you don't have all day to figure out which one is right for you. At Boost, we use various SEO methods, including local business listings.