In this chapter you will learn how to find and audit local citations for your website using Whitespark's Local Citation Finder tool.
Whitespark is a Canadian-based online marketing service provider which offers local SEO services and tools to multi-location businesses, agencies, and other enterprises.
As they focus primarily on citation building and citation auditing, we as SEOs can make great use of their citation enhancements for our own local campaigns to help maintain a sturdy online presence.
Below is a brief guide on how to audit the local citations of your site, with an added step at the end to get the edge over your competitors.
Local Citation Finder Tool
Whitespark’s local citation finder tool provides a powerful insight into finding citation opportunities based on your location and keyphrases.
Unfortunately, to utilise the full extent of Whitespark’s Local Citation Finder Tool you now have to go Pro. The good news is that their prices are fairly reasonable. A breakdown of them are below for reference.
Once you’ve created an account, you can start searching!
1. Start Searching!: Launch the Local Citation Finder under ‘Your Account’ in the main navigation.
2. Enter Your Business Information: Once you’re in, you’ll be presented with the following screen.
To begin checking all of your local citations across the web, click on the Business Search tab at the top of the page.
You will then be prompted to enter your business information, this includes:
- Your Location
- Phone Number
- Business Name
It is of paramount importance that this data is for your main location i.e. the location that you want your prospective customers to find you with.
This is because Google pulls data from far and wide across the Internet, not just from Google My Business, so keeping all of these details consistent is key.
3. View Your Results: After your analysis is complete (this can take up to 10 minutes), click the next tab along, Your Search Results, and scroll down to the grid.
Your latest audit should be displayed at the top.
Click into it to find tabulated data on all of the local citations Whitespark has identified for your website.
The report shows important statistics like the referring domain URL, the type, and domain authority (DA) of the entry.
You may wish to export a CSV file to make it easier to work with the data that is presented by the tool, however, this is not necessary.
Whitespark also provides the direct link to the directory referring to your business, so you can click on it and edit it directly if you know the account details of your directory.
4. Compare & Contrast: To go one step further, you can choose a competitor and compare your citations with theirs.
To do this, all you need to do is repeat steps 1-3 above with the competitor’s information.
After that, select ‘compare (pro)’ in the drop-down menu and tick both your business and that of your competitor.
Hit Go and you’ll be presented with a direct comparison; Whitespark will highlight the citations you have with a green tick, and the ones you don’t have with a red cross.
You can similarly export the data into a spreadsheet and compare and contrast as you please.
5. Using the Data – You can now use this data to access all your citations and make sure that your name, address, and phone number (NAP) information is consistent across the internet.
It is also important to note any directories or listings from which you do not currently have a link from. For these, you should look to add your listing (you may need to create an account) with the correct information. In most cases, this is completely free.
Keeping your local citations consistent is a cornerstone tactic of local SEO. As Google relies on the data across the Internet just as much as it does its own sources, keeping business information uniform across it is an essential part of local SEO.
Whitespark allows you to keep on top of this effectively, with the added advantage of assessing your competition and how to get the better of them.