Showing up in search results is not automatic when you start your business. There are a few steps you need to take to make sure your business is added to online directories so consumers can find you.
Consumers can choose from over 70 different online directories worldwide to look for businesses and services. Claiming your free online listings in such directories is important for your visibility and sales.
However, for most small businesses, adding your business to 70 online directories seems unmanageable. There are solutions for this if you have it in your budget by hiring a company to do it for you (two are listed below). But, if that is not in your plan or budget, you can pick from a few of the biggest players and add your business yourself – for FREE.
Based on consumer search behavior In the United States, here are the top 6 online directories we recommend you list your business in.
#1 Google Business
Google is by far the most used search engine in the world with more than 5 billion searches made daily. If there is only going to be one place you claim your business listing, it should be in Google Business.
When your business is verified by Google, after a few steps when you set up your Google Business account, your business will appear on Google Maps, enable people to leave reviews, and show up in the search engine results.
Within Google Business, you can create unique offers called posts to promote your products or services. These posts are shown in search results when it matches someone’s query and/or location.
To claim your Google listing, click here.
#2 Bing Places
This directory is one of the most used online directories worldwide. While the number of overall searches are far behind that of Google, Bing still gets 900 million search inquiries each day.
To claim your listing on Bing Places, it is recommended you do so after you have claimed your Google Business listing and been verified. This is because you can import your verified Google Business information into Bing Places, saving you the time of entering it again.
Within Bing Places, you can also create unique offers and posts, much like with Google Business. This is an added bonus to create Calls to Action for users that see your business in their Bing search results.
To claim your Bing listing, click here.
Yelp is a common choice among consumers who are looking to find a type of business or service and want to hear what consumers have to say about that business/service. For this reason, Yelp is a good place to list your business.
When you claim your free Yelp listing, your business will be findable by the keywords you choose to describe it, allow people to see photos of your products or business, and enable them to leave a review.
To claim your Yelp listing, click here.
If your business is in food, recreation, travel, or hospitality it is a smart choice to claim your free listing in TripAdvisor. This platform is often used by people who are planning their vacations and outings, looking for what/who they should visit and what consumers are saying about them.
TripAdvisor also has robust capabilities for consumers to post pictures and videos of their experiences, giving your business free promo from people who have interacted with you.
To claim your TripAdvisor listing, click here.
When you request to claim your business on Yahoo!, once it is approved you will have a basic listing for people to find you in your local area.
The process to claim your business on Yahoo! is a little confusing. They have partnered with a company called Yext to manage this process, so be reassured when you see this name at the provided link, you are in the right place.
To note, Yext will try to convert you into a paying subscriber to get added benefits, much like those you get from Google Business or Bing Places for free. They will also try to up-sell managing all your listings worldwide. Claiming your free listing requires no monetary commitment, so make sure that’s all you are signing up for.
To claim your Yahoo! listing, click here.
#6 Yellow Pages
Yellow Pages is the original business directory. It is now 100% online. If someone uses this directory to find local services/businesses, you will show up in the search results if their search area and inquiry match your business description.
Claiming your listing in Yellow Pages is much like the process with Yahoo!. Yellow Pages has teamed up with a company called Thyrv who will also try to convert you into a subscriber that pays for them to manage your listings on search engines worldwide. Be aware of this, as no monetary commitment is needed to claim your basic listing. To claim your Yellow Pages listing, click here.
To learn the Top 7 social media sites of 2019, click here.