local-citations
Local Search

SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

There are thousands of places where a citation (which is a mention of your business name and address, phone number and/or website) can be built for your local business in order to help your current and potential customers find you easier online. But, before we get the top 15 sources for local citations by country, here’s the ‘big four’:

Getting listed on these well-established and frequently crawled portals can improve the chances of your business info appearing on the SERPs of the major search engines. Consistency is key. No matter how many directories you submit your website to, be consistent! Use the same format across all platforms.

For example, 212-712-4849 and (212) 712-4849 are different. Pick one, and stick to it. The same goes for your business name and address.

Here’s the rest:

United States

1. Yelp.com

A study conducted by Harvard Business School professor, Michael Luca, reveals that businesses enjoy a bump of 5-9% in revenue for every star on a review on Yelp.

Quick facts:

  1. There are over 57 million+ business reviews on Yelp
  2. Yelp receives 44 million unique visitors a month

2. Citysearch.com

Citysearch’s big competitor is Yelp. The traffic these guys receive is not as much as that of Yelp’s, but hey, you can have a listing on both, so why not?

When asked why we should even use them when there are literally hundreds of similar sites out there, their response is:

“Founded in 1995, we focus on local businesses and community and, most importantly, bringing the two together.”

Citysearch might not be as popular as Yelp, but they sure are older (twice as old actually!).

3. DexKnows.com

This website provides three different types of listings:

  1. Free listing
  2. Starter pack
  3. Enhanced profile

While #2 and #3 do give you some fancy features, the free listing is good enough to get your business found and a quick, quality citation. The free listing allows you to put in your keywords and link to your social media pages and website.

4. YP.com

Quick facts about YellowPages.com, according to them:

“North America’s largest local search, media and advertising company”

“Over 3 calls are made every second from the yp app”

“The YP℠ Local Ad Network, along with YP’s other advertising solutions, has the ability to reach 90% of the U.S. Internet population”

Pretty bold claims, right? Getting listed on yp.com is free.

5. Foursquare.com

The point of this post is to give you a list of places where you can get citations, as well as why you should do so using the platforms I am recommending. The ‘about’ page of Foursquare for business does a really good job of explaining the “why” in a very pleasant tone.

1 380x380 SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

Image courtesy foursquare.com

6. Hotfrog.com

Cool fact: 1.6 million people are making more than 372,000 inquiries to businesses on Hotfrog every month.

Other than a citation on a popular website, Hotfrog also provides you with reporting tools that:

  1. Show you profile activity
  2. Your best-performing keywords
  3. Keyword suggestions to get even more visitors

7. CityVoter.com

If you feel like your business provides a remarkable product or service, then you may want to get listed on CityVoter.com. Their model revolves mainly around contests, brackets, and sweepstakes.

The way to “get in” is to contact them and inquire about their products and services and how they can help your business in particular.

8. TripAdvisor.com

TripAdvisor.com is a website that’s mainly geared towards restaurants, hotels, resorts, attractions, and flights. They have 900,000 likes+ on Facebook, so yeah, the search engines trust this source.

9. Superpages.com

21 380x228 SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

Image courtesy superpages.com

Superpages.com is yet another good citation source where you can submit site.

They have a sleek mobile app that allows its users to search for businesses by category, region, service type, ratings, special offers, and more.

10. MerchantCircle.com

In my research, I stumbled upon this description of the website on Wikipedia. It’s almost perfectly written and describes really well what MerchantCircle.com is and what they do.

MerchantCircle is an online business directory, social business network, and marketing platform. It combines features from traditional Internet yellow pages sites such as Yellowpages.com, Citysearch and Yelp, with community-oriented social media sites like Facebook and Myspace.

11. Manta.com

This website allows you to put up your business name, address and map, contact information, opening hours, links to your social profiles, as well as details of your products and services.

Here’s a real-time example of Bright Skin Care Salon & Spa in New York. Notice how they also have 3 images that link to a more in-depth description of their main services. It’s a nice listing to have for your business.

Birght skin care salon spa 380x271 SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

Image courtesy bright skin care salon and spa/manta.com

12. YellowUSA.com

While YellowUSA.com doesn’t seem to have all the bells and whistles others provide, it has been around for quite some time and does allow you to write basic information about your business, and that can only help with increasing your reach.

13. ShowMeLocal.com

This one doesn’t look very active review-wise, but it’s still a place that has its businesses well categorized and classified. Getting a spot on there is free, so why not? Plus, they look like they provide businesses with promotional tools in their members area, so make sure to check them out.

14. JudysBook.com

The idea behind this social/business directory was inspired from the mother-in-law of one of the founders! Her name was Judy, and she kept a little green book of her favorite places that she shares with her friends. It does charge to claim your listing, but it seems to be pretty active.

United Kingdom

1. Qype.co.uk / Yelp.co.uk

In October 2012, Yelp acquired Qype so Qype has now, in essence, integrated into Yelp to bring more reviews and businesses to people. Businesses reviews and photos that were posted on Qype were moved to Yelp, a leading online business review site connecting people to local businesses from the city’s tastiest sushi bar to the most renowned STI clinic.

Yelp was founded in 2004 and has an average of 132 million unique visitors a month. The site has over 57 million local reviews.

2. Hotfrog.co.uk

Hotfrog was founded in 2005 and is operated out of Sydney, Australia by Cirrus Media. According to statistics provided by the site,

  1. Over 75 businesses are added to Hotfrog everyday
  2. Hotfrog operates in 38 countries worldwide
  3. Per month, Hotfrog has an average of 2 million page views and 1 million unique users
  4. 69 million businesses reach new customers globally using Hotfrog

For small businesses, Hotfrog is a worthy tool to create demand and target customers.

3. UKcities.co.uk

UK Cities is a network of city guides and local directories for the four main areas of The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland: England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland. The UK has 66 ‘official’ cities and you can find your way around any number of these places with guides and local directories on UK Cities for local information about business listings, demographic data, and local history.

4. LocalLife.co.uk

The Locallife.co.uk website is another place people turn to for local information including business listings, maps, and directions and local events. The aim of the site is to provide a complete local guide to life in the United Kingdom. The website is actually more of a network of local directories and each directory (whether we are talking about Bournemouth or Isle of Wight or Cardiff) has menus for the local restaurants, businesses, events and attractions.

5. BizWiki.co.uk

Bizwiki stands for the business wiki. They are essentially a free business-listing site for British businesses on the web. The unique thing about this particular site is that it uses both user-edited records and structured data to return more in-depth and useful information about the businesses and organizations listed on the site.

6. BusinessNetwork.co.uk

Business Network is a simple business directory that connects thousands of verified UK businesses. It is a relatively new directory so it offers a somewhat different approach to helping businesses target customers online and allows for the use of mobile devices as well as conventional desktop browsers through a responsive design. Signing up to Business Network is free.

7. FreeBD.co.uk

FreeBD is, as the name suggests, a free UK business directory that can help provide a link between your business and your customers. It’s an easy and free way to showcase your products and services.

Business listed on FreeBD usually have detailed information about their products and services and classified under categories like “Food & Drink”, “Health & Beauty”, “Entertainment & Media”, and “Shopping”.

8. TheBestOf.co.uk

If you’re a business in the UK, this is a business directory worth considering. Every business listed on the website has been recommended by local people and the directory boasts very helpful and reliable reviews for the community. The “Upcoming Events” and “What People Are Saying” sections are particularly interesting. It’s a fun community to be part of.

9. Fyple.co.uk

Fyple is a free online business directory offering over 1 million companies the possibility to tell their story and showcase their products and services through classified business information including, but not limited to, business websites, phone numbers and detailed local maps. It’s a really good platform to promote your business with no charge and you can return to your company profile to make changes any time you wish.

10. Britaine.co.uk

Britaine is your local search engine for websites, blogs, and companies based in the UK. You can search for local information and listings by area or by classified ads. People can search for everything: pets for sale, vacation rentals, courses and classes, and musical instruments. While this platform may not be as easy to use as, say Yelp, it wouldn’t hurt to have a business listing on there. You definitely can’t go wrong.

11. Tipped.co.uk

Tipped is an interesting online community meant for people to guess what? Share tips! Yeah, it’s a place where people share tips about restaurants, pubs, movies, local services, transport, and just about everything you can think of.

So whether you want to learn more about a local Michelin-starred restaurant or a spa round the corner, quickly search the site by keyword and/or location and get tipped. You can also give tips to people by writing reviews. And this makes Tipped a very interesting community for businesses.

12. BusinessMagnet.co.uk

Businessmagnet.co.uk has been around for two decades and is perhaps one of the most comprehensive Business to Business Directories in the UK. With over 140,000 subscribers and an average of 3.5 million page views per month, it is a business directory worthy of consideration. Businessmagnet uses a simple and user-friendly login interface and has a 90% customer retention year on year.

13. WheresBest.co.uk

Where’s best is a large online guide to pubs, restaurants, hotels and other meeting places and sites of interest in the UK. The site allows users to find businesses and meeting venues close by and other people can see how users rate different places. You can also post comments and reviews. Where’s best is currently in the early stages of development and it has a good potential to grow big in the coming months with some interesting features expected down the line.

14. Business-Directory-UK.co.uk

The UK Business Directory was established in 1999 and has been around for over a decade now. Unlike most of the business listing sites we’ve covered so far, this one is a paid directory although there is a “free listings” package. Essentially there are four ways you can advertise your company on the UK Business Directory and depending on the level of exposure you require, it can cost you £24.99+VAT per annum or £59.99+VAT per annum. The UK Business Directory ranks highly on Google for a number of keyword phrases.

15. Yell.com

On Yell.com, people can access the names, addresses and telephone numbers of over 2 million UK businesses. You can search the listings by the classification of businesses or you can look for details of a specific company by searching for a company name. This service covers the whole of the UK (except the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands).

 

Read Part 2 of this series: Top 15 Places for Local Citations in Canada & Australia, coming soon!

 

Featured image made by author

0703 SameerPanjwani SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

Sameer Panjwani

Sameer Panjwani writes on behalf of Directory Maximizer, a premier SEO company offering a wide range of link building services like - manual directory submissions, niche directory submissions, guest blogging, local business directory listings etc.
0703 SameerPanjwani SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

You Might Also Like

Leave a Reply

15 thoughts on “SEO 101: The Top 15 Places for Local Citations in the U.S. and the U.K.

    1. Hi Chris,

      It could be a one-off case but while researching I didn’t come across any sort of malware warning. But yes, I will make sure to check it once again.

      Thanks, Sameer

  1. Hi. Thanks for publishing this list.

    With a view to making this as useful as possible for your readers, I would put these sites higher up your UK list. We analyzed over 3,000 citationtracker reports and found that these sites appear most regularly in the UK (full list below)

    1. Scoot.co.uk – getting a listing on Scoot also gets you a listing on their network of sites – TouchLocal, the Sun, the Independent – all very good sites so you get 4 listings for the price of 1.

    2. ThomsonLocal – well known offline directory in the UK – they also distribute data to other local directories in UK so you get more bang for you buck here

    3. Cylex-uk.co.uk – this site has high domain authority & is well supported – listing go live quickly on this site.

    Here is the top 10 sites we found when analyzing the 3,000 reports –

    1. yell.com
    2. cylex-uk.co.uk
    3. thomsonlocal.com
    4. hotfrog.co.uk
    5. misterwhat.co.uk
    6. yelp.com
    7. independent.co.uk
    8. yelp.co.uk
    9. thesun.co.uk
    10. ufindus.com

    We published the full list of top 50 sites here – http://www.brightlocal.com/2013/09/11/top-50-local-citation-sites/

  2. Images that have been posted to a Yelp business listing seem to come up a lot in local searches here in the UK.

    1. Hello Jo,

      Yes sometimes it so happens like if the user isn’t really impressed with your business details or reviews, complementing your Yelp business listing with relevant images might just change his mind.

  3. I would say the Better Business Bureau has to be a top 5 citation in the US. It’s a curated directory from a very authoritative site!

    1. To be frank, I had never heard of it before but thanks Brian for letting me know about Better Business Bureau directory. Will definitely use it soon :)

  4. Just want to clear up a few common myths:

    1) Your listing at Google isn’t really a citation. Calling it a citation is like calling your website a link. You get links that reference your website, and you get citations that reference your business, which Google amalgamates to generate your listing.

    2) 212-712-4849 and (212) 712-4849 are actually exactly the same as far as google is concerned. It identifies both versions as phone numbers and there is no need to worry about being consistent between which format you use. Some sites will force their preferred format and you’ll have no control anyway.

    3) same idea with the address. While mentions of your business with completely different addresses are problematic, it’s not necessary to be 100% consistent with how you format your address. Google normalizes all the addresses it finds on the web, so the variations will end up being formatted the same before Google tries to match it up with a listing in its database. For example, “suite #2b, 56 main st” and “56 Main Street, ste 2B” are both going to normalize to the same address and Google will have no trouble associating those with your business.

  5. Hi Sameer, and thanks for interesting article, I often have to find where to optimize for local search Italian citations, you have such as to suggest website to this location?
    thanks