What is NAP and Why is it Good for SEO?
Yep, you read it right. We’re telling you to NAP everywhere. But we’re not telling you to sleep. NAP stands for name, address and phone number and is extremely important for local search engine optimization (SEO) success. In a way, you could compare it to your shop’s fingerprint.
Think about how often Amazon, eBay or other online retailers occupy the top three search result spots when you search for a generic product on Google. Big business often dominates the results. But your small business has something that these guys don’t - a local, physical location. When it comes down to local search, Google places heavy emphasis on your physical location which includes your business’ name, address and phone number (NAP).
Why Does Google Care About NAP?
With so are many fake or spam businesses on the internet, Google works hard to display quality results. To combat spam and rank only reputable businesses, Google tries its best to verify local businesses. It does this by looking all over the internet for directories where your business’ information is listed. By looking specially for these three key pieces of information, Google is able to increasingly verify your business’ existence.
By comparing consistent NAP across various directory listings, Google believes you are who you say you are. But be aware; any discrepancies in your NAP information will cause Google to question your website’s validity. Thankfully, it isn’t hard to keep information consistent across directories. It is often free to be included most directories, and you will be allowed to allowed to edit your listings as necessary. Make sure to monitor all of your business listings for consistency, especially if your contact information has changed.
Tips for Improving Your NAP for SEO
Below are some tips for improving your SEO through NAP consistency:
- List your name, address and phone number as text on your website.
- Your footer is a great place to list this information as well as on a contact landing page. Make sure the information is listed as text and not embedded in a photo.
- Better Business Bureau
- Local Chamber of Commerce site
- And others...
- If your website lists "120 Main Street," avoid using "120 Main St." (Google won’t see “St.” as identical to “Street).
- If “Mike’s Automotive Repair Shop” is listed on your website, avoid using a shortened name such as “Mike’s Auto” on directories
Traditionally, word-of-mouth will undoubtedly always play an important role in your marketing strategy. Make sure your shop incorporates smart NAP practices to increase its chance of being in those coveted top Google spots so that customers are most likely to schedule an appointment with your shop.
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