This lesson continues from our previous lesson.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the practice of providing your web content in such a way that search engines will favor it and rank it higher in results for applicable searches. A search engine wants to be trusted by its users and so the more information it can contain about your website, and the more consistent that information is, the better you will rank.
Now to the cream of the lesson:
Online business listings are a great way to support and supplement your already existing information to give it that extra validation.
An online business directory refers to any online database that connects users with relevant businesses. Online directories are not just a digital version of the Yellow pages, where you have to fish through information and flip through pages to find what you’re looking for. They are comprehensive platforms that enable users to instantly identify, learn about, and contact businesses relevant to them. Online business directory listings can work wonders even for your small business.
Online business directories can take the form of a website, app and/or other platform. They exist on the web, social media platforms, smart phones, and even on specific devices. There are many online directories for which listing your business is free. Some are free but require additional payment for special features, such as multiple locations or categories, including a website link, a call to action, removing ads from your listing or adding photos and videos.
Benefits of listing on Online Business Directories
- It will Amplify your online presence: If you search for your business name on the internet, you will likely see your business shown up in directories for which you never submitted a listing. This is because many business directories today pull from other larger directories and automatically create listings. This means that getting listed in one directory usually means getting listed in several more, allowing you to kill two (or more)birds with one stone. On the flip side, sometimes the information doesn’t transfer over properly. It is thus important to check, claim and update your listings frequently and regularly.
- It improves your local visibility: As a local business, directories are beneficial because they make your business visible to your local community.
- Get discovered more: The typical online business directory allows users to search by specific criteria such as service, location and category. By simply entering complete and accurate information in your listing, the directory will then connect your business to the people searching for it, even if they don’t search for your business name explicitly. This is highly beneficial because often times, people don’t know how to search for a specific business name or the specific service they need.
- Customer Review (use word of mouth): Most online business directories have a customer review component, as the word of mouth has always been a trusted source for consumers. With real time and sharing capabilities of mobile devices, customers can now publish reviews more quickly- even during their experience. People seek out and trust online customer reviews today more than ever, so get listed in online business directories and you’ll be placed in a direct channel to your target audience.
- It strengthens your business reputation: The fear of negative reviews prevents many businesses from getting listed online but this shuts them off from getting positive reviews too, which are essential for a good reputation. As long as you know how to properly handle one, the cost of one negative review is outweighed by the benefit of many positive reviews. Plus, a mix of reviews can even strengthen your reputation, as it shows that you are a genuine and healthy company that has nothing to hide.
- It increases Brand awareness: When a user performs a search in an online business directory, it will display a list of relevant results, each with a brief snapshot so that you can decide which one to click on to learn more. This means that even if a user doesn’t click on your listing, they still see your business. Every encounter a person has with your business increases their awareness and familiarity with your brand, which warms them up for further engagement.
- It helps to boost your SEO: It has been said that the best place to hide a dead body is on page two of Google results and it’s pretty much true since most searchers won’t go past page one of the SERP (Search Engine Results Page). As a business today, it’s vital for your website to be ranked on the first page of the major search engines (i.e. Google, Bing and Yahoo). Doing this will consistently get visitors to your site.
- You are more likely to show up on Google: It is possible to get on the first page of Google through SEO practices but it can take a few months to start seeing results. Online business directory sites, on the other hand, have been around for a while, have high amounts of traffic, and are for the most part trusted by search engines. Since Google likes these characteristics, its first page of search results regularly contain pages from online directories. If you get listed in an online business directory, you have a chance of benefitting from their well-established SEO and showing up on the first page of Google.
To conclude, online business directories have immense benefits, and neglecting them can actually hurt your business. So get started today with creating, claiming and updating your listings online. Do note that there are 100s of online business directories but not all are relevant to your business. There are some that are geared towards a specific need. For instance, booking.com is an online directory and booking website for hotels so you need to seek out the indexes and directories that are geared towards your niche. Our sites in same category are Yelp, Yellow Pages, Google My Business.etc. These sites can help you appreciate the concept of business directories.
Check out our main Business directory too: www.directmeonline.com. Let’s begin a wonderful journey with you.
You can also call or whatsapp us on +233 24 965 4432 or +233 20 165 2375 for free consultation and professional help you list your businesses on online directories and other Online Services.