Dispensary SEO Local Citation Building w/ NAP

Dispensary Citations and Nap

If you’re reading this, there’s a high chance that you already understand the basics of local dispensary SEO, but are looking to expand your knowledge so that you get the skills needed to better promote your business on search engines. Doing local SEO for marijuana dispensaries can appear to be quite a challenge due to all of the variables involved.

If you want to improve your presence on search engines and market your dispensary online, you’ll have to use the right local SEO methods. One of them is building citations. However, you’ll need to take care to do it right from the beginning. Using the wrong dispensary SEO techniques can actually harm your standing on search engines.

What Are Citations and Why Are They Important?

Simply put, citations are a representation of your business information posted on various websites. They include different elements, such as your dispensary’s name, address, phone number and website URL.

Google uses citations to evaluate the overall authority that your business has. Google seeks to reward brands that have a strong presence in their industry and having many citations is the key to showing the world’s biggest search engine that your business is legitimate.

According to the latest local SEO research, citations make up around 13 percent of local ranking factors. The breakdown of factors considered for the local pack in 2017 are as follows:

  • Google My Business – 19%
  • Links – 17%
  • On-page elements – 14%
  • Citations – 13%
  • Reviews – 13%
  • Behavioral – 10%
  • Personalization – 9%
  • Social 3%

While having a link in the citation can make it more valuable, you should know that citations don’t require a link to your website in order to be counted by Google.

What is NAP?

If you’ve been looking into local SEO, you’ve probably seen the term “NAP” repeated often. NAP stands for name, address and phone number. It simply refers to the main pieces of information that make up a local business citation.

Ensure That Your Information Always Matches

Just like with other marketing techniques, consistency is the key to success when it comes to building citations for your dispensary. It’s very important that your NAP info matches very closely on every website that it’s found. Your listings should have the exact same name, address and phone number on each website that they’re found. Another consideration is that you should have only one complete listing on each website, as duplicate listings have been shown to have a negative impact on local SEO.

Different Types of Citations

There are two main types of citations in the local SEO world, structured and unstructured. While they work in similar ways, there’s a few differences between them that you should be aware.

Structured Citations

A structured citation is having your NAP information on a business directory. The most common business directories are Yelp, Yellow Pages and Facebook, but there are plenty of other ones that your dispensary business can be mentioned in.

Unstructured Citations

Even though unstructured citations can be very valuable, many business owners and even professional SEO agencies pay little attention to them. An unstructured citation is any mention of your business information (NAP) on a website that isn’t actually a business directory.

Your NAP could be mentioned in various places spread out throughout the Internet. Common sources of unstructured citations for local businesses involve Wiki articles, blog posts or articles published by local news sites.

How to Get Started With Local SEO

If you want to improve your local dispensary SEO rankings, there’s a few things that you can do. By deploying the right dispensary SEO strategies, you can build a solid presence for your dispensary on search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo. This will result in more visitors to your website, more customers for your dispensary business and thus more revenue for you.

Here’s how you can get a solid presence in local search results:

  • Get Listed on All the Main Search Engines

The first thing you should do is to work on establishing your presence on the main local search engines. Optimizing your presence on them is critical if you want your local SEO efforts to have good results.

Claiming your dispensary’s listing on each search engine is very simple. All that you have to do is to follow the links below:

1. Apple Maps
2. Bing
3. Google

  • Get Listed on the Internet’s Top Business Directories

After you’ve gotten your dispensary business listed on the biggest search engines, it’s time to establish your presence on the most popular business directories. Getting a listing on these websites for your dispensary will greatly improve the authority of your business and can lead to a better position in local search results.

The current top-tier business directories are:

1. Yelp
2. Yellow Pages
3. Foursquare

  • Ensure That You’re Listed on Cannabis-Related Business Directories

While building citations on social media and the most popular business directories is important, you should also ensure that your business has a presence on the top cannabis-related business directories. Having a presence on these directories helps show search engines that your business is legitimate and an authority in its niche.

Examples of marijuana-specific directories include:

1. Merry Jane
2. Weedmaps
3. Leafly
4. CannaBusiness
5. Dispensaries.com
6. Chronic Startups
7. Cannabis Adventures
8. Bong Local
9. Sticky Shops
10. Green Pages Guide

Listing your dispensary business on all of the directories mentioned above is completely free, so you should take the time to do it. If you want to find more cannabis-related directories, you can simply do a search for “cannabis directory,” “marijuana directories,” “cannabis business directory,” or “cannabis business listings.”

More Tips Citation Building Tips for Dispensaries

Building citations for your business isn’t particularly difficult. However, it can be time-consuming. Remember that you always have the option of outsourcing your citation building to a local SEO services provider.

Of course, there are many business owners that prefer to do their SEO in-house. If this is you, here are some more local citation buildings tips that you’ll find valuable:

  • Get a Proper Business Email Address – This means getting an email address matching the domain name of your website, as opposed to a free email from Gmail or Live. Having an email address from your domain makes it easier to verify your listings.
  • Ensure That Your Nap Information Is Consistent – The way you write your name, address and phone number should be the same on each website that you’re listed on.
  • Fill Out Your Listing Completely – Many websites provide you with a wide range of options to customize your listing besides just inputting your business name and contact information. Add links to your website, social media accounts, information about your opening hours, as well as your logo and photos of your establishment. Having a complete listing not only has local SEO benefits, but it will also increase the chance that a human visitor will pay attention to it and visit your website.
  • Claim Your Listings on All Directories Where Your Business Is Listed – Claiming your listing allows you to add more information to it and keep it updated. Most directories have a process that you’ll have to go through to verify that the business is actually yours. In the majority of cases, this process is quite simple and involves just a phone call or email verification.

Final Thoughts on Local Citation Building

By following the advice mentioned in this post, you can do wonders to improve your citation profile and build a more solid presence on the top search engines. When doing local SEO, you should remember that it’s a gradual process, so it may take several weeks or months before you start seeing significant improvements, especially if your business is currently buried under several pages of competing search results.