If you have a physical storefront for walk-in customer traffic, or your services target a specific local area – you’ll want your information to be found in Google Maps, Yahoo Local Search and MSN Maps – as well as in other local search directories. Each directory has its own listing guidelines but shares one key objective – to provide the most accurate and relevant listings to its audience. That’s why it is essential to provide your most current and detailed information to these directories according to their specific guidelines. It takes a little time and effort, but these directories are valuable to your online campaign – and the listings are free.
Bear in mind that your company may already have been found by directories and a listing exists. In that case, it is especially important to claim your listing and make sure your information is complete and accurate. Duplicate and inaccurate listings are common and should immediately be reported. Providing correct listings to local search directories is the business owner’s responsibility.
Local Search Directories also offer a bonus feature to their audiences – the opportunity to rate or review a business. Not only does this provide useful feedback to the prospective customer, but ratings and reviews improve your listing’s rank. That’s a bonus for you, too, when your reviews are good. When your business receives a poor review, you’ll need to quickly decide how to respond and remedy the situation. Ratings and reviews contribute to your business reputation, so it’s advisable to frequently check what customers are saying about your business online.