Today, Google is inserting itself between consumer and local business websites much more often.
You need look no further than Google My Business conversion points, AMP, and featured snippets for proof.
So it makes sense to get your local business information into the places people are already going to find businesses like yours, rather than simply hoping they'll find you in search results.
What is a business directory?
A business directory is an online list of businesses within a particular niche, location, or category. One way local businesses can get found by online searchers is through inclusion in business directories.
Getting your local business' NAP (Name, Address, Phone number) information listed on directories, online business listing sites, and citation sites helps to improve visibility, but backlinks from these sites can also have a benefit to SEO. Here are a few things to make sure your company listing has in it once you add it to a directory:
Consistent NAP. If you add or update your business on multiple business listing sites, make sure you're providing the same company information across each directory.
A link to your website. Backlinks – also known as inbound links – are crucial to your company website's domain authority. Consider adding a tracking link at the end of this URL as well, so you can see how much traffic your website specifically gets from the business directories that are linking to it.
A company description. Make sure you have a detailed description of your business that reflects your organization's mission, culture, and values.
Multimedia. Give company searchers a visual taste of your business with a picture or video of your office, your employees, or your daily business operations.
With that in mind, we've put together a list of the biggest and most important business listings sites today (based on Domain Authority gathered from Moz Link Explorer in 2021). Many of these directories are completely free.