With the Nigerian Real Estate industry getting more and more competitive, coming on top of search results belongs to those who go some extra miles, as regards their SEO.
Local Citation building is a quite important SEO technique, but it’s hardly talked about. So in this article, I intend introducing you to the technique.
But first and foremost,
What is a citation in SEO?
A citation is simply a mention of your business or organization name, office address, and office phone number (NAP) on the webpage of some other site.
You have a company called “ABC Limited”, and your office address is “1, Primary Street, Lekki, Lagos”, and your office phone no is “0701-234-5678” — if this information get listed [altogether], on some other website’s page, you can be said to have been cited.
You should keep in mind that citations are different from mentions.
A mention is simply when your business or organization name gets mentioned, whereas a citation must also include your Business name, address and phone number (NAP).
In the next section, I’d discuss some benefits of taking advantage of this SEO technique, just in case you still have doubts. And afterwards, I’d discuss ways to earn yourself more citations.
Benefits of Leveraging Citation Building
Helps Prove Your Business Is Genuine
When deciding whether to present certain businesses and organizations to users [in search results], things search engines like Google always try to determine if your business or organization is genuine.
These search engines wouldn’t like to present their users fake or scam businesses and organizations. And citations have proven to be a major metric search engines use to determine whether a business or organization is genuine. if you’ve adopted a lot of SEO techniques and still haven’t started seeing impressive results, then chances are that these engines are still unable to figure out whether your business or organization is genuine or not.
To summarize everything I said in the previous paragraph, citation can help prove a business or organization to be genuine.
Domain Authority Strengthening
Domain Authority Strengthening is another important reward you’d get for citation building.
You might ask, What is Domain Authority [DA]?
Domain authority is a metric created by MOZ, a third party SEO tool, helps determine the strength of a website. Every site has a domain authority, and it is always a number between 0 and 100. The higher this number is, for your website, the more likely your web pages would get listed at the top of search engine results.
So if your domain authority is currently 10, adopting citation building, can significantly raise your DA.
Visibility on Google Maps
One of the ways people now locate the offices of businesses and organizations is with the help of Google Maps.
In fact, Google Maps has been ranked as one of the top ways people now find offices, across the world. For example, if someone searches for “Real estate company in Lekki”, “estate agent in Lekki”, “ Real estate agent in Lagos” – These searchers are looking for real estate agents or developers to work with.
if your office can’t be found on Google Maps, then chances are that you’re missing out on some business opportunities.
How can you have your office location seen on Google Maps? Easiest ways to go about it is to have your business or organization registered on Google My Business directory, have people visit your local outlet frequently or be cited on many local websites.
Just placing your physical address and phone no on your website would not guarantee to have your office location getting cited on Map.
They also need to be on other websites, to improve your chances.
How to Win Yourself Citations
Use Social Platforms [Facebook, LinkedIn, etc]
Among the easiest ways to build your citation, is to include your business or organization details [name, office address, phone(NAP)] and other useful information] in your social media profiles.
Facebook has support for this, so does LinkedIn and most social media platforms.
If you don’t have social media accounts for your business or organization, then this might be a reason to create them.
Reach out to Local Electronic Real Estate Yellow Pages
All citations are not created equal due to varying websites strengths from business directories. When building your citation, you should try as much as possible to get cited in many directories as possible.
I know of Business List [businesslist.com.ng] and Nigeria Directory [directory.org.ng].
There are many of them out there.
Reach out to Websites where Competitors are cited
Social media platforms and business directories aren’t the only places where you could get cited.
You could also get cited on certain sites, for some reason or the other. And one of the ways I’ve always discovered this kind of site is to find out where competitors are cited, then reaching out to those websites, to also enlist my business.
I’ve done this a lot of times.
But of course, not everyone you reach out to would honour your request, but winning the citation of just one of these people could make all the difference.
To find where competitors are cited, there are techniques and tools you could use. These techniques and tools are out of the scope of this content, so I would be detailing this approach in my coming post.
Reach out to Websites where Real Estate is being discussed
There are sites where real estate is frequently discussed.
Websites of this kind have repeatedly proven to be places where real estate businesses and organizations could also win citations. So when trying to build your citation, you should also consider this type of website. A good example would be local news websites.
Enable Google Alerts for New Pages Talking About Real Estate
After reaching out to every possible website, new webpages talking about real estate would appear. And among these new pages, would be places where you could win new citations.
So it would be a good idea to be able to discover these pages, as they’re published. And good enough, we have tools that can help with this.
Tools like Google Alerts are capable of alerting people when new information on certain topics become available.
So you can take advantage of these tools as well.
Citation building is a technique that has repeatedly proven useful. In other words, if you can get it right, it can be very helpful in building your SEO.
However, this is not to mean it’s going to be easy. In fact, I should probably state that it’s not going to be easy because you’d face a good number of rejections. And I guess that’s the reason why it’s not often discussed. So when trying to build your citation, be prepared to face rejections, but don’t allow these few rejections to discourage you.
A single citation from a reputable source could make all the difference.
One last thing I’d like to state is that the company name, office address, and office phone number (NAP) you provide should be consistent across all platforms. For instance, if your company is called “ REKO CAPITAL ”, it is not advisable to use “REKO CAPITAL INTERNATIONAL” in any citation.
You should also use the exact same office address and the exact same phone no.