3 min read

A 5 step Guide to optimise for NAP presence & consistency

NAP consistency is one of the most commonly talked about local SEO optimisation tactics due to its extremely influential ranking factors and benefits associated. As you can see below from the Moz 2017 local SEO ranking factors report.

Local SEO

Before we dive into NAP consistency, here’s a quick overview of what local SEO is, who it applies to and the difference between local pack and localised organic traffic.

What is Local SEO?

Local SEO is a cost effective and valuable way to advertise your business online. It’s a way to ensure that you’re visible at the exact time people are looking for businesses like yours. Although some say that there’s no point wasting time optimising for Local SEO due to only 20% of searches having local intent, these are searches with high purchase intent.

Local SEO applies to anyone who supplies a product or service to a specific geographic area and people search or Google serves results with local results.

Local SEO

There are two ways in which your website can appear in local results:

1. Searches with locations in them. E.g: Pizza Delivery in London

2. Location biased Searches (Where Google understands there’s local intent and serves local results) E.g: Pizza Delivery

Both ways can generate your website to appear in either local pack results or localised organic results.

Local pack results are the 3 box map section you see in Google. Localised organic traffic is local websites appearing as a URL in the organic results.

What is NAP consistency and what does it stand for?

NAP stands for Name, Address & Phone number. NAP consistency is how consistent this information is over a wide range of sources, including Google my business, your website and citations. Citations are mentions of your business and do not need a link back to your website for value to be attributed. The most common type of citations are online business directories such as Yelp, Yell, Cylex, Hotfrog and so on.

What’s NAP presence?

NAP presence is essentially how often your details appear on your website and citations. Optimising for NAP presence gives validation to NAP consistency by verifying a consistency score over a wide range of sources.

5 steps to optimise your NAP for local Search:

1. Set your fixed Name, address & Phone number details

For each of your locations, take time to map out the name, address and phone number details you wish to optimise for. There are a few things you should take into consideration when doing so.

  • A keyword rich Google my business name is one of the most influential ranking factors. Including service or location keywords in your Google My Business name will bring ranking benefits. If you’re a multi location business you may use locations within the name to add more relevancy for search engines for each of the locations target areas.
  • By using a full address and ensuring that your address is how it would appear on a letter added value will be attributed. 
  • Search engines take phone number area codes into consideration when serving local results. Therefore, you should use a local phone number if possible.

2. Update and track Google my business

Login or claim your Google My Business account and update each profiles to contain the Name, address and phone number you’ve just mapped out. If you’re wondering what benefit NAP consistency has to your local visibility you can track each profile with a unique UTM URL and analyse the impact of optimisation in Google Analytics.

3. Audit & Update your website’s NAP details

Scan through your website to identify all locations where NAP details are present and compare them to your details. If they’re incorrect update each locations details to exactly match yours.

4. Audit & Update your citations

Use a tool like Yext to analyse how consistent your NAP information is for each location across some of the top UK business directories.

Where inconsistencies are identified login, claim or get access to the directory and update the details to match the Name, address & phone number for each location so they now match with your Google my business profile and website.

5. Increase your NAP presence

Now that you’ve amended your existing NAP issues across GMB, your website and citations look to grow the quantity in which this information is available.

  • Optimise your H1, titles and page copy to be optimised for your target locations where relevant.

  • If you don’t already have a page for each of your locations, we suggest that you look to implement them ASAP with your NAP details present and marked up in local business schema.

  • Look to grow your citation quantities by ensuring that you can be found on all top UK directories.

  • Look to get listed on Niche and local directories as these will bring more relevancy to the service you’re looking to provide and in what location.

  • Try to identify a way to make your NAP details accessible on as many relevant pages as possible. Utilising footers with NAP information marked up in schema is a great way to achieve this.

NAP consistency is a time consuming task and can be very damaging to your local visibility if you don’t get it right. If you’d like help optimising your website for Local SEO contact us and we will be happy to help.

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