Back in the stone ages (or what seems that way now), when you needed to find a business you would pull out the yellow or white pages. You’d take this massive book out of the closet and start flipping through it and unless you used it all the time like my dad did (and still does) it would take FOREVER to find what you were looking for.
Back in the stone ages, and even now, it might cost you anywhere from hundreds of dollars to thousands of dollars a month to have your business listed in the white or yellow pages. I’ve heard of people spending as little as $150 a month for a little tiny ad with nothing that would draw attention to it. I’ve read from people that have spent as much as $2,000 a month for a more prominent ad.
For as long as we’ve had phone books this is the way business was done. This is the old way of letting people know you exist, and if you are still doing this you are throwing your advertising money away. Just for $150 a month you can buy more attention to your site than you can throwing it away on a phone book ad. Even worse if you are spending big money for a bigger ad, you can really get a lot more notice from internet marketing than you could from something in the phone book that only 15-20% of the population is looking at anymore.
In today’s world we have a number of online business directories that will do everything the phone books did for you in the past, and even more. What these directories do for your site now is they add links to your website, and in the online world a link to your website is online currency for getting it ranked in searches like Google or Yahoo. Directories also let people who use them know about your business, by people that live in the area where your business operates.
The best part of all of this is that the vast majority of these are free. With all the things that these other directories do for your website without charging money is what is making your phone book smaller and smaller every year. There are a large amount of citation’s you can get for your website, and some are higher quality than others. I’m including a link to many that you can get for yourself that will do great things for your site, and I highly suggest you get your site listed on the top 40-50 of the ones that you can find on this list.
One of the other things that citations do is they help dilute your anchor text profile (the links to your site) so that your best keywords are not over used and hurting your sites ranking. There is lots you can do with citations beyond just getting them, but the best thing you can start with is getting them.