How To Find Local Business Citations


Have you ever wondered how Google selects which businesses to show in the map results?

Google’s goal is to always provide a high quality search experience.

Have you ever driven to a business and found that they were closed or no longer located there? This is an incredibly bad search experience the Google wants to avoid.

In order to prevent this from happening, Google will only display businesses that they are confident are currently in business.

How does Google tell from web signals a business is active?

There are many different factors Google uses to determine if a business listing is good. One of the most important factors is called a local business citation.

What is a local business citation?

Simply put a local business citation are details about your business, such as the business name address and phone number, appear on other 3rd party websites. Google assumes businesses with more citations are likely better results to show searchers. Creating local business citations is one of the most important way to get your local business listed on the map more frequently than your competitors

Where do you start?

A particularly effective way of determining where your business needs to be listed is to simply examine your top competitors. Start by searching your target phrase on google and find the businesses that have top rankings on the map. Use these business details to search Google and you will know exactly which websites list your top competitors. This provides a blueprint of where your business should be listed and will help improve the frequency your local business appears in the search results.

Start building targeted citations today!

CitationSPY is an online service that prepares a competitive analysis of your business citations eliminating the need for a manual search. Today they are offering a limited time free trial for your own custom CitationSPY report. You can take advantage of this special offer by visiting and use their report to drive your business to the top of the search results!

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3 Tips for More Google Map Traffic

Wondering what to do next now you have set up and verified for your Google My Business page?

Here are three tips to get the most out of your Google map.

1. Create a Posting Calendar

Posting frequently on a Google My Business page sends a strong signal to Google your business is active resulting in more exposure. Not sure what to post?

Use your phone as a digital media center. Take a picture of the business, examples of work, holiday party and you instantly have great multimedia content.

2. Ask for Reviews

Implement a strategy to generate reviews for your business. This can be as simple as a sign in your waiting room or a scheduled email to reminded past customers to leave a review.

Direct your customers to the most important review sites starting with Google. Make it easy to find your review pages on your website and within emails.

3. Create Local Citations

Google assumes an established business will have key details such as their name, address, and phone number listing in many other places online. Get listed in local directories and ensure these key details are consistent in every location.

Click here to run our listing scan to see how your business is currently listed

New Local Search Ad Formats on Google

Google has been testing a few new ad formats in the Phoenix market. These ads feature local business details including direction and call out options.

Standard local results have alternatively been removed completely from the search results or appear further down the page.

Screenshot of Google's Home Service Ads on a mobile device
Screenshot of Google’s new local ads on a mobile device
Standard ad display for Google mobile
Standard ad display for Google mobile

Google continually tests new search results and may or may not make these changes permanent. If you are a local service provider currently advertising on Google make sure you have local ad extension enabled to appear in the new results.

If you are not currently advertising, now is a great time to test out AdWords as the standard organic results are now further down the fold and likely receiving less visibility.

Google Maps Just Got More Competitive

During the past few years, the branding of Google’s local results has changed frequently. Alternating from Google Places, Google+ Local, to Google My Business. These changes have made for interesting conversation but have not had a meaningful impact on how search results are displayed.

More notably, the most recent change is affecting the amount of local results that are displayed in the search engine results. Until recently, Google seemed to have rested on a the 7 pack variation allowing 7 different businesses to appear in the results.

Google Local 7 Pack


Earlier in August, Google rolled out a map pack change reducing number of listings from 7 to 3. It has been over a month and the 3 pack appears to be the universal default.

Google Local 3 Pack



Local map optimization has become much more competitive forcing businesses to compete over 3 result spaces rather than 7 spacs. Is your business in a position to compete? Check out our local map services and see how your local online presence measures up.

Set Up a Google Plus Business Page

Do you want to get started with Google+ pages? The given article will help you set up a Google+ page for your business.

STEP 1: Create your page

When you signed in to your Google+ profile, click on the Create a Google+ page link, which is there in your right hand sidebar to create your Google+ page. Alternatively, you can also go to the Create a page area.

You will also need to select a category, which your Google+ page belongs to. You can select a category from the following:

  • Local Business or Place: This category is suitable for physical establishments such as stores, industries, hotels, restaurants, and more! Its subcategories range from Home & Construction to Storage. You should select this category, if you have a local business. This will help you connect to your Google Places page (if any) to get your information or you can start from scratch. If you select this category for your Google+ page, then you have an option to show a map of your business on your page. This option is not available on pages in other categories.
  • Brand or Product: This category is suitable mainly for apparels, electronics, automobiles, financial services, and more! Its subcategories range from Aerospace to Website.
  • Company, Organization, or Institution: This category is suitable for companies, organizations, institutions, and more! Its subcategories range from Aerospace to Travel & Leisure.
  • Arts, Entertainment or Sports: This category is suitable for TV, movies, music, books, sports, and more!

If you think your Google+ page does not go with any of the above-listed main categories and subcategories, you can list it under Other category. Once you choose the category, fill the required details like Page name, Website, Subcategory, and content age level. After this, click on Create button to continue.

Step 2: Enter basic page information

First things first, your Google+ wants to have your Tagline and your Profile photo.

  • Your Tagline will be appeared beneath the name of your page, so make sure it briefly describes your business.
  • Your profile photo should be easily recognized by people, so prefer choosing a common logo or a storefront photo.

If you have other profiles on different social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedln, then make sure you use the same profile for your Google+ page. This helps your visitors or connections on other networks to recognize your page easily.

After you click on Continue button, you will be then asked to share your Google+ page as a status update with your personal profile. (I would recommend you to skip this for now, as this can be done later, once you successfully create your Google+ page.) Click on Finish button to skip this.

Now, you can use Google+ as your new Google+ page. However, if you want to switch back to your personal profile, you can simply do so by using the dropdown just below your page’s name in the home page. Similarly, you can switch back to your Google+ pages by using the same dropdown, or using Manage your pages link.

If you are using Google+ as your page, then click on the Profile icon at the top. To enter the following details, you can then click on the blue Edit Profile button.

  • Your Tagline: If you didn’t enter your tagline in the beginning, then you can enter it now by clicking on that section. It is recommended to think of a shorter version of your Twitter profile’s bio, so that a new visitor can get to know about your page and business easily. This plays a major role to entice new visitors to connect with it.
  • Your Scrapbook: In this section, you can enter five photos, which according to you will represent your business the best. While choosing the photos, you can consider various factors, including famous people who represent your brand, your logo, your top products, pictures showing fun around the office, or anything you feel will make a positive and great visual impression of your business.
  • Your Introduction: Make the most of this section by entering information about your business, company website, and other links that have great anchor text. Try to enter eye-catchy words, as the first 50 or so characters will appear in Google+ search results. Thus, it can seriously make a huge difference.
  • Your Contact Information: In this section, you can enter your contact details, so that people can get in touch with your business with ease. While entering the information, make sure you do not enter anything that you may not be able to respond quickly.
  • Recommended Links: Unlike Google+ personal profile page, which has three three link sections to choose from, the Google+ pages have only one link section, which they mark as recommended.

Step 3: Verify your Google+ page

Verifying Google+ page will help your business to be appeared in the search results from Maps to Search. Verification is also needed to make any changes to your page in the future. The screen for verification options will be appeared automatically when you are done with your page.

  • Verify By Postcard: If you choose this option, you will see a postcard with name of your business and the address you provided. You will receive it in the mail within one or two weeks. Once you get postcard, go to My Business dashboard and enter the code you have received.
  • Verify By Phone: You can choose this option, if you don‘t want to get a postcard by Mail. After clicking on Verify By Phone option from the menu, you will get a verification code to your business phone number. Simply, enter that code and get your page verified.

After you have entered the code, you will get a screen asking you to review your information provided and make any last-minute changes (if any). Change the details if required and then click on the Done editing after you have finished.

Step 4: Status updates on Google+

Before announcing your Google+ page on your personal profile, make sure you add some public status updates. These are helpful when it come to give your visitors a preview of a type of content they can expect from this page. In order to add status updates as your page, make sure you use Google+ as your page. Share your thoughts or what’s new on your Google+ home below the Stream column.

Step 5: Get and organize followers

Even after creating a new Google+ page, you will have to wait until visitors follow you before you could add them to your page’s circles and start communicating with them.

To get followers, you can simply announce it on your Google+ personal profile. It’s really simple.

You may also want to connect your Google+ page to your website. To do so, you can use a simple piece of code or an icon with the aid of the code generated by the Google+ badge configuration tool. However, if your end goal is to get followers only, then you can use the Standard badge option, which allows visitors to follow your page on your website by using the Add to circles button.

Once the visitor start following your page, you can then start organizing them into circles the same way you want people to follow on your Google+ personal page.

The above-mentioned steps are enough to turn your Google Plus page into wonders.