Data aggregators have an extremely important role in our technological world.  More importantly, on the local search sphere. But what’s the role of data aggregators? Their job is to compile information to major search engines like Bing, which means that having a good business listing information on data aggregators will help it get right on Bing. Yellow page directories, utility records, phone directories, and various online information providers are massive business databases that have been built by these aggregators.

We can find four data providers:

1)   Factual

2)   Acxiom

3)   Infogroup

4)   Localeze

Their databases contain business info that search engines seek out in order to show it to their customers. All of the following information is the base where online citations come from. But what is a citation? Well, citations are every time the name of the business appears on the Internet, the more times the name appears, the better search rank will have.

The major data aggregators are the ones who provide information that helps businesses be found correctly on online resources such as:

·      Google Maps

·      Bing Local

·      Apple/Siri

·      Facebook

·      Yellow Pages

These online resources are just a few of the many sources that receive data aggregators. Clearly sites like Yellow Pages, Google Maps and Facebook are essential places to be listed for businesses that want to be found online. If businesses don’t want to take a risk on not to be found by potential consumers, they need to get their information correct, with all of these data providers.

Every business wants to have online visibility! Does your business want to generate as many business citations as possible? Do you want to master SEO with all of the major data aggregators?

What is a citation?

As previously mentioned, a citation is just every time a business is mentioned in the online sphere. Many people believe that citations are links to websites, but that is not necessarily true. They can contain links, but they don’t have to, in order to be considered a citation. These are the ways citations can appear online:

·      Company number (alone)

·      Phone number (alone)

·      Company name and phone number

·      Company name, phone number and address

·      Company name, phone number, address and link

Although all of the previous combinations are considered a citation, a citation is not considered to be complete unless it contains the company name, address and phone number (NAP). The more correct a business has their NAP data with the major data providers the better chance they have on seeing their information correctly across the web.

Citations can appear in an unstructured or a structured manner. How can you distinguish them?  

An unstructured citation can be seen on event listings, random websites, blogs, government records, social media mentions or job postings sites.  These are unstructured citations since they can be as simple as a company mention. They don’t tend to include a business NAP data.

A structured citation is the most common citation, and the most detailed when consumers are looking for business information. They can be found on business listing sites like TripAdvisor, Yellowpages or Yelp. In most cases, these citations contain the business NAP data.

No matter where a citation appears, in some way, it has an influence on the local search ranking for a particular business. Data aggregators play an important role in getting a business found or listed on many major websites.

How important can be to build citations?

Citations have a major influence on local search rankings. The more times a business is mentioned on the Internet, the better change your business has to rank near the top of local search.

According to Google’s search ranking algorithm, building citation is not the only thing a business has to do if they want to rank on search engines.  Some other factors that can influence the local search are: mobile compatibility, online reviews, keyword density and domain authority.

But this does not mean the citations don’t have an important role in local search ranking. In fact, David Mihm’s local search study says that citations are very important: they make up 25% of the top 20 factors the influence local search.

What do data aggregators do?

When conducting a local search, data aggregators provide a lot of the data to search engines. They own the space known as the local search ecosystem, a place where local searches get all of their information.

The four major data aggregators are Factual, Acxiom, Infogroup, and Localeze. It is noticeable that many listings sites and major directories rely on these data providers for their info. Data aggregators are the foundation of what builds structured citations on major sites. In short, the main message is to get business data right with the major data aggregators.

Incorrect data on any of these aggregators means that your business information online can be inconsistent or wrong on many major listings sites and directories. The SEO can be hurt, by having inconsistent information online, so be sure to have your business correctly listed with all the major players.

Consumers don’t trust businesses with inconsistent information online -73% of consumers lose trust in brands due to inaccurate local business listings. Business citations rely on the power of data aggregator!

Get it right!

There is no secret; it is as simple as getting it right with the major data aggregators. Local search is very important for businesses but especially for small ones. They could force themselves into bankruptcy if their online visibility is non-existent.

Consumers rely on the Internet and search engines to interact with local businesses. According to Google, “4 in 5 consumers use search engines to find products, experiences or services nearby.” Local search is what drives consumers to a business’s front door, and drives top-line revenue for local business.

Make sure that your business gets it right. Start using data aggregators since it is the first step in mastering local SEO and in building accurate online citations.

To find out more about how we can help grow your business, book a consultation now.