Consulting firms are best equipped to focus their talents on business transformation, organizational restructuring, and improving processes—not on marketing.
That’s why using consulting company directories is such a good idea. Consulting directories, or more specifically, the citations that come from them, are amazing tools for local search engine optimization (SEO) that don’t take as much time as most marketing tactics.
What’s local SEO? It’s the ultimate inbound marketing tactic for local lead generation.
If local SEO and consulting directories sound like a logical next step for your marketing efforts, keep reading about how to use consulting directories for local SEO in this piece.
Did you know 90% of all the internet search traffic worldwide goes to Google?
On top of that, nearly 46% of all Google searches are local —and that has made local SEO incredibly valuable.
Local search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of increasing a business’ visibility in Google’s local results and Google Maps. With the dominance of Google, these spots have become incredibly valuable as local lead generators for consulting firms.
Local SEO all starts with a Google My Business (GMB) profile, which features businesses in Google’s local results, above organic search results, and right below paid ads.
Additionally, GMB profiles provide relevant service information about your business in Google Maps for relevant queries.
According to Google, three factors determine local search results in these spots: relevance, distance, and prominence.
Local SEO works to improve all three of these factors to draw in local leads.
Distance is simply how far away your consulting firm is from a search query typed into Google. If your business is over three miles away, you usually won’t be included in results, but it depends on the location term.
Relevance is how well a search engine can match a query with your website. Relevance often comes down to inputting as much information as possible about your business in as many places as possible, so search engines can better match your business with specific queries.
If your business is a household name, your firm holds more prominence; otherwise, you’re going to need to do some work to build prominence in your community online. That means more inbound links to your site from other domains, improving your position on search engine results pages (SERPs), and citations on directories.
Citations are online references to a business. They usually include the business name, address, and phone number (called NAP), and sometimes also include a link, a map, reviews, or business information.
There are two types of citations: unstructured citations and structured citations.
Unstructured citations are online references to a business that comes at the end of an article, or in quote, somewhere where the business wasn’t intending to receive a citation. This could be a reference to your consulting firm in the bio section of a thought leadership article submitted to online publications, such as IndustryWeek.com or shrm.org.
Then, there are structured citations that companies have to apply and sometimes pay to obtain. These often appear in general or consulting directories.
Here’s a structured citation example from a general business directory, the Better Business Bureau, that features an Arizona Restaurant Consulting firm.
Then there are industry-specific consulting company directories. Take this example from Management Consulted, where Bain & Company has a citation with their name, main address, phone number, and other information.
Even top consulting firms like Bain understand the need for citations and business directories to improve local SEO and business exposure.
No matter what type of consulting firm you have, there is an industry-specific directory out there for you. From tech consulting directories to security consulting directories, here are some top options for securing citations as a consulting firm.
Management Consulted is a corporate training and resume building business that also has one of the largest directories for consulting firms. Everyone from Bain & Company to tiny regional consulting firms all have citations on this site.
Citations here include NAP, a link, and a thorough company profile, but no map.
BoogarLists is mainly known for its venture capital and investment management directory, which lists all the top venture capitalists in the nation, but they also have an industry-specific consulting firm directory. A citation here will get your business name, a blurb about who you are and what you do, and a link.
Consultants.info has an amazing 12,000+ consultants and consulting firms listed on their site. You’ll find everything from aviation manual consultants to management consultants. On top of that, landing a citation here is completely free and takes only a couple of minutes. Your citation will include NAP, a link, a place where clients can review your business, and a blurb about your specialties.
The Society of Professional Consultants is a non-profit, New England based organization dedicated to helping consultants connect with clients. The SPC is a membership-based organization, which means your citation will cost you $150 a year, making it the most expensive on this list. However, the link is authoritative and relevant, so it might just be worth it. A citation from the SPC citation includes a name, a picture, and a section where you can write up to 500 words about your business. If you do decide to secure a citation on this consulting company directory, make sure to take advantage of this opportunity to talk about your business.
The Society for Human Resource Management is one of the best citations you can land if you are a human resources consultant. From affirmative action to retirement consultants, HR consultants are a more wide-ranging group than you might imagine.
If you fall into any of these categories, make sure you get a citation from SHRM. Citations feature NAP, reviews, a link, directions, business information, and more.
The IIDM was founded in 2000 to help busy company directors and managers find valuable resources. Everything from articles on leadership to management case studies is available for managers at the IIDM. And on top of that, they have a huge business directory that includes a specific consulting section. A citation from the IIDM includes your business name, a link, and a small blurb section to describe your business.
If you run a firm that consults for non-profit organizations, this is the spot for you. The Non-profit E-Learning Lab focuses on educating non-profit organizations on laws, regulations, and best practices through educational content, but they also have a non-profit consultant directory that can be very valuable for this niche group. A citation here will only include business name, and phone number, but no address. There is also a link and a blurb where you can write about your business, and the citations are free.
The Consultancy Register is a 100% focused business consultant directory. Their tagline is “helping businesses find consultants.” A citation from the Register will include NAP, a link, and more, like this one for the tech consulting firm, Rayar.
Registering for the directory is free as well, so don’t forget to take advantage of this one.
The International Association of Professional Security Consultants is a members-only organization that offers high-quality citations. Membership dues for the IAPSC run about $395 per year. However, membership gets you more than a citation and a link. You’ll also get referral business, annual conferences, industry reports, and more.
IT and tech consultants are the most common in the industry, and there are plenty of directories to service this group specifically. One of the best is from Techsoup.org. Techsoup.org is free to use for both consultants and tech companies; it offers reviews, references, and easy communication between consultants and potential clients on their site. If you’re trying to compete in the fast-paced tech consulting world, definitely try landing a citation at techsoup.org.
The lead generation that comes from landing a top spot in local search results on Google and Google Maps is incredible. However, using local SEO and consulting company directories to reach these spots can take time and effort that most consulting firms just don’t have.
If you find yourself wanting to move forward with local SEO, but unable to find the time, why not give the experts a call?. We’d be more than happy to help you get started on your local SEO journey.
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