Top Online Business Directories

Top Online Business Directories

It isn’t easy being a small business owner trying to get your business promoted in the local community. Search engines use complex algorithms to sort results, and an oversaturated marketplace makes it harder than ever for people to find your website and then click through to buy your products or services. One of the best ways of tackling this issue is by getting your business listed in online business directories which will raise your online presence and push your site further up the rankings as a result.

Building Citations

In digital marketing jargon, getting these listings in online directories is known as building citations. In layman’s terms, if you get your business listed in the right online directories, you are making sure that your company details will appear when people search for companies like yours. Business directories are nothing new; the difference is that the 21st century directories are now all on the internet rather than in the traditional paper format.

 A very basic listing on an online directory has what’s known as the organisation’s NAP – name, address (both physical and website), and phone number. Choosing the correct directories to list your organisation in will help with your search engine optimisation, as links on reputable directory sites gives your website more credibility in the eyes of the search engine’s ranking software. Although online directories all offer something slightly different, there are some essential elements which you should try to include in any listing. These are:

  • Name, address and phone number – if you are trying to list your company across several business directories, make sure your details are consistent across all of them.
  • Link – most directories will allow you to provide a backlink which takes the user back to your own website when clicked. A good SEO trick is to add a tracking link to the end of the URL, so you can easily keep an eye on how many visitors are coming from each directory link.
  • Company description – this is even more important when your company name doesn’t make it very clear what products or services you offer. Just give a brief description, mentioning the areas in which you operate too.
  • Multimedia – some directories will let you upload pictures or even video clips to your free listing, others will allow one or two pictures free of charge, with more content hosted for a fee.

How to Get Started With Online Directories

If you’re new to listing your business in online directories, then the best strategy is to start with the big household names, and explore more niche or local directories as you gain in confidence and start to see results from the larger sites.

Some of the key sites you should ensure that your organisation is listed on are :

  • Facebook
  • Apple Maps
  • Google My Business – covers both search engine and Google Maps
  • LinkedIn Company directory
  • Bing – not as big a search engine as Google and too often overlooked
  • Yell – the site which used to be Yellow Pages
  • Yelp
  • com
  • Yahoo Local