search engine optimization
NAP ACCOUNTS Name, Address, Phone Number
NAP Accounts (otherwise referred to as local business listings or online citations) refers to all the places where your business Name, Address, and Phone Number pop up on the internet. As mundane as this may seem, NAP accounts are literally the bread and butter of local SEO.
Your business’ local visibility depends in large part on the number of NAP accounts you have as well as whether or not those accounts reflect the same information. The reality is, business names, addresses, and phone numbers change over time. To compound the issue, business listings are often automatically created on your behalf with erroneous information. If you want a quick snapshot of your business listings across the internet, you can always use a service like Yext. But remember that a hybrid approach of searchable databases and organic searches on Google, Bing, and Yahoo is the only way of getting an accurate representation of where your business is listed (as well as what NAP variations exist).
We commonly think of business listings like Yelp, Google My Business, Bing Places, Tripadvisor, and Yahoo Local, but there are literally thousands of places your website may be listed. Can you confirm the full name, address, and phone number is correctly listed on all of them? Technically, your social media accounts act as business listings too. It only takes a few big listings (like FaceBook or Instagram) to offset the way your business is indexed.
So you might be asking yourself, why are business listings so important to how your website ranks locally? Because search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo rely most heavily on NAP accounts to link your website and business to a geographical location. If half of your listings have slightly different business information, the signal to Google (for example) is going to be weak. Acme Widgets, Acme Widgets, LLC, and The Acme Widgets Company are examples of NAP variations that will confuse search engines. By contrast, if all of the listings have the exact same information, the signal to search engines will be very strong.
So how are you supposed to find all of your NAP accounts? Here’s a list of 25 places your business may be listed to get you started:
While you’re checking on whether or not you’re listed at these locations, you might as well add a listing wherever you don’t already have one. Here are three things to keep in mind while creating a listing.
- Make sure the details are consistent – as we discussed above, details matter. The same name, address, and phone number needs to be present for each listing.
- Add links back to your website – this will instantly add reputable backlinks to your site that can help you rank locally for the services you provide.
- Add media wherever possible – images and video increase the touch points of your listing, and are more likely to get clicked on in a blanket search for your services.
We can help you claim and verify your Google My Business, Bing Places, Yelp, TripAdvisor and other, local listings. We’ll also integrate these listings and track their performance in your marketing funnel.
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