Local business directories, the real cost
As a business owner in your area, you are more than likely to have been told by a number of different sources that you should list your business in a number of different directories, for example The Yellow Pages or Yelp . Business owners use them to help them improve their visibility on Google. If this is your first time hearing about this, it might sound easy.
When I first heard about this process, it seemed like all you had to do was sign up for some of these services, maybe go for a couple of different things to get a link. to my website on the profile of, for example, Yell.com.
But I was wrong, terribly wrong. The truth behind this is that if you want to go the DIY route, you need to get plenty of local business listings. Some of them offer free ads, paid ads, and some as packages on several different networks.
In addition to this, there are local data providers. These people may not be directories themselves, but they can certainly help you.
Throughout this article, I will go over the various costs associated with listing your business on these directories.
As a business owner, your main factor is time, so it is essential that you record and write down the time you use to build and maintain a local listing for your business. Keep reading to find out what you need to do to find the right directory in which to list your business.
Ranking your business
The first step you need to do is find your current location. Find out how easy (or difficult) it is to find your business online. It also gives you the chance to find listings that you may already own that need to be claimed.
The directories that appear when you search for your business are the ones you should approach first. Quite simply because these are the directories that your potential customers consult. Keeping these directories up to date is vital, especially if you are not present on social networks or if you have at least one website. It is essential to keep information such as hours of operation and what the business has to offer.
These directories will be the easiest to process because the listing already exists. Most business directories will give you a link to help you start the process.
However, each directory is different, depending on which one you use you may need to check a number of different places to find the link you will need to claim your business. Common places to look are at the top of the list or, in some cases, in the header or footer of the directories page.
If you don’t claim your business, it prevents you from editing the list, adding vital information to let potential customers know exactly what you have to offer, etc. Plus, claiming the list allows you to receive notifications about any notices or public notices your business gets.
Classification in the directory
Now that you’ve located the listings that already exist, it’s time to find new places to list your business through directories. Before doing that, it’s a very good idea to do some research, to find out which directory is most used for your particular industry, from there you will find some of the competing businesses in the area.
Now you can build listings on these directories, or you can have a different take on it, maybe you could use a directory that your competition is not using, that way there is less competition.
Ranking your keywords
As always, your keywords in the search are absolutely essential. You should research these keywords to see which local directories appear in the top 10 results. Most keyword searches for businesses in the area take you to your own website, business listings in local business directories, or even your competition’s website.
Make sure you get listed in the local business directories where your competition is ranked. You can even think about doing paid referrals or even paid advertising to make sure your business is listed first in the category. Simply because that particular page is getting a lot of traffic from the audience you want to attract.
Ranking in the mobile world
Once you’ve completed all the searches for the directories that currently rank your business with your competition, you need to do the same for the mobile world. This allows you to locate any additional directories that mobile users tend to use.
Did you know?
Half of mobile searchers end up using a local store to make a purchase.
So as you can guess. Listing your business in a directory used by mobile users is an important success factor.
Claim and create directory listings
By now, you are probably thinking that finding the best local directory takes a little time. Now, take a deep breath, for here is the really long moment.
I mean, some directories make it pretty straightforward, the rest, well, they have a more complicated way of doing things.
Checking the business listing is usually the most complicated part. Many networks only ask you to verify your email address. Others may need you to complete an automated calling (or texting) service. Some take it a step further and may need to speak to you via a live call just to confirm your ad (and to try and sell you additional features).
But it is worse. Some directories require you to verify the business by mail. This means, as you may have already guessed, that you could wait a while (7-14 days) to verify your ad.
If you are trying to claim your business listing where you need to update the address or phone number, then you will need to find some free time to contact the support team for the particular directory, if you are not. do not, you will not be able to claim your business by email or phone.
Now you have a rough idea of ââhow much time it will take you to invest to find, claim, and list in a local business directory. It’s time to look at the real damage, the real cost. While some of the best local directories are free. Premium listings can include your website link in the listing, placing your listing in more than one category, adding media, and disabling advertisements.
The price for this service can range from Â£ 20 to Â£ 350 per year. The reason for such a big gap is not because some directories are better than others. Some directories sell ads in groups (hence the high prices), which is not a bad idea if you are trying to list your business in many directories.
So how do you make such a decision?
How do you know which ads are worth the money you’re going to pay? If you look at directories that aren’t on the first page of Google when looking for your business name, keywords, or competition, you can do some research to make sure you’re making the right choice.
Check the traffic
There are many different software packages that you can use to check website traffic. You can use SEMrush for free for the first 10 queries (10 queries before signing up and another 10 after you enter your email).
This service allows you to view the traffic of local business directories. You can then compare it to a different directory, which can help you decide whether it is worth paying a lot of money for the directory you are looking at.
Some directories can pose a threat. It is best to put the name of the local business directory on Google followed by the word âscamâ. This will surely notify you if there are any scams that involve this directory. While this is not a scam, you will still come across important information from previous or current users of the service (positive or negative).
A word of advice: if you come across a directory that has low traffic and has a lot of complaints or negative reviews, it’s best to move on, whether or not they want to get paid.
Activity in your category
If you can see that other businesses in your category are getting tips, reviews, or getting any kind of attention. It means that consumers are using this business directory and it may be worth paying the extra money as it will surely bring business.
But be aware that if your category is not getting any kind of attention on the local business directory you are reviewing then avoid it, there is a very low chance that your ad insertion will make a difference it the consumer is likely to use a completely different website to find businesses in your particular industry.
To be aware!
Some business directories will allow you to list for free, but will charge you for the leads you get. If businesses in your category aren’t getting reviews or receiving customer engagement, the leads you get may not be legitimate customers.
The position of your ad
You can pay for a particular local business directory, but does that ensure your ad gets on the first page? If so, then by all means grab this opportunity with both hands (provided all of the above factors are met).
The category page is very similar to the results of a search engine. The lower you are on the list, the less attention you will attract. So why take a shortcut. Do your research, make the investment and it will surely pay off in the long run.
To conclude, local business directories are very valuable when it comes to expanding your business. Just be sure to do your research to find the best directory that will offer you the best for your needs.