Comparison of local business listings: Free vs Whitespark, Moz Local & Yext pricing
Free local business listings
Free is always best. That's why having a solid social media strategy, brand recognition, and geo-targeted website integrated with local business listings on Google and Facebook will beat everything else. Without a geo-targeted website and a social media strategy, there is no local business listing in the world that can do the job alone. Without brand recognition your business can't stand out.
Why is social media strategy so important? Because all the search engines love fresh content and engagement. Social media gives credibility to what you're doing in real world. If it's integrated with Google Plus, it's a huge bonus. From what we see every day, it's surprising that very few companies embrace Google+. It's a huge opportunity if you can build an engaging community.
Why is a geo-targeted website so important? Where you link the local business listings is even more important than having listings in the first place. This is what ensures your SERP rankings are high. In January 2018, you will need a mobile-first geo-targeted website as search engine algorithms will be penalizing all websites that are not mobile-responsive.
What about brand recognition? AKA "reputation management" is the process of gathering reviews for your services and products. Just as in a job interview, references are important. Reputation Management is key to success.
Paid Local business listings: Whitespark, Moz Local & Yext pricing
Note #1: Manual Local Business Listing Service takes up to several weeks
Note #2: Automated Local Business Listing Service takes only hours and at maximum 3 days
Note #3: Aggregated Local Business Listing Service takes up to several months
Yext Pricing (automated local business listings)
Yext was the first, and Yext pricing reflects it. Too bad they did not invest in a better customer service. Reps are too pushy and are trying to earn commissions rather than give you honest consulting. At $1,000 per location per year yext pricing is ridiculous. For a public company, their tactics are pretty sketchy. Furthermore, should you ever cancel with Yext, you're back to square one. They will physically delete your public information. Remember, you gave Yext permission to change all of your properties. They own you.
Moz Local Pricing (aggregated local business listings)
Moz Local pricing reflects the fact that the local business listings are managed by data aggregators which take up to 3 months to propagate and none of the listings are guaranteed. Without Google Local Business Listing and Facebook Local Business Advertising as part of the equation, this is a waste of time and money. To give you an idea, Digital Herder offers Free aggregator distribution to all of our clients. Charging for data aggregator services is a double-whammy. The directory sites pay for the data aggregators to give them local business listings... and then the same aggregators get another income generated from local business owners.
Whitespark Pricing (manual local business listings)
Whitespark is a Canadian company. Their #1 local business listing service is completely manual and requires a significant amount of time from business owners to set up. It takes just as much effort to set up the top 8 local business listings yourself. Whitespark pricing directly reflects the amount of time they need to spend on manually building your local business listings, but they don't include the amount of time YOU will need to spend. And of course, the same directories with integrated social media channels (Google and Facebook specifically) need to be managed by YOU. That's not included.
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