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What Are Citations in SEO?

Posted by Larry Wilson on

It’s the process of linking to other websites from your own. Citations are among the most significant factors in determining a high search engine ranking. In SEO, it is especially important to understand how to create and utilize backlinks in your campaigns. Go Now and check out the latest tricks.

Citations are a way for the search engines to determine what web pages should rank higher in their results, based on a number of factors. These factors include but aren’t limited to, the topic, the page name, webpage title, URL, page description, and most importantly, the business name, address, and phone number of the webmaster. If your business name, address, and phone number are on the page, then the links on your own site are also considered part of your “citations”.

How are citations in SEO used? Most importantly, they help search engines understand who you are, what your business is about, and where you are located. In short, by using citations, the search engines can link back to you and connect with you as an authority figure. This creates local business name, address, and phone number links that improve your ranking.

There are a few different types of citations in SEO. An HTML citation is one way to receive a link back to your website without including your business data in the link. The citation consists simply of your main keyword, together with your city and/or county. Your citations are also listed by the page names that contain your citations, e.g., “Business Listings – citation”. The only drawback to this type of listing is that if you submit multiple sites, the hyperlink you leave for each site is not counted towards your optimization.

The other way to obtain links from the search engines is through local citations. In local citation SEO, you include a few key factors in your listing. You must have a city or county that is serviced by a public internet connection and ranked relatively high for that city or county. Your links must be relevant to your site’s content and optimized with your keywords.

Another popular citation strategy in local business listings is called the passive approach. The passive approach uses natural listing features like keyword density, description tags, and anchor texts to achieve good rankings. Although this method does not require much work on your part, it is tedious and does take time away from your search traffic. Another drawback to the passive approach is that it requires that you submit lots of articles and re-publish them often. This approach can be very costly, especially if you rely on it exclusively.

The most effective approach to get backlinks is the active or “manual” approach. This consists of thorough keyword research, crafting quality content articles, and consistently submitting them to major directories. Although this method does take a bit more effort and time, your results will be much better than with the other two. This approach also provides higher search engine rankings as well as more targeted traffic. Although it is a little more difficult to do, the end results will definitely be worth the extra effort.

It takes more time to generate good rankings with the passive approach, but if you plan on using it exclusively, then you should invest in the process. If you rely on the search engines exclusively, then you might as well forget about it. Just remember that it costs money to achieve rankings, even if you have good backlinking strategies. The bottom line is that if you want your online business to succeed, then you need to spend time and money on building up good backlinking. In the end, though, you will realize that having low rankings is not nearly as profitable as having high rankings which is exactly what the passive approach is all about.