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A backlink, also known as an inbound link, is a hyperlink that originates from one website and directs users to another. 
Backlinks play a crucial role in the realm of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)...................... 
Backlinks serve as pathways for search engines to uncover fresh and pertinent content on your website. 
Furthermore, they enhance your website's credibility and trustworthiness by conveying to search engines that your content is both high-quality and authoritative. 
The most advantageous backlinks are those derived from authoritative sources. These sources encompass websites within your industry or local community, as well as esteemed research institutions, government agencies, and educational organisations. 
There are local backlinks and these tend to be sources targeting your service area or target market. Examples are local business directories, newspapers, and blogs, to name a few. 
Remember, reviews in your Google profile can be a productive backlink 

Why are backlinks important? 

It can drive relevant and local target market traffic to the website. 
Also, as part of the process of reaching out to these sources new connections might be made. 

What are local citations, and the difference with backlinks? 

These two can get mixed up. While a backlink is a link from another website to your own, a citation on the other hand is when an online directory, features your company's "Name, Address, and Phone Number" (NAP for short). 
When your NAP details are cited on platforms such as social media networks, review sites, directories, applications, and various web pages, it facilitates online discovery of your business. 
Moreover, this practice can elevate your local search engine rankings by aiding search engines in pinpointing your location and showcasing the range of services you offer in the region. 

Local online Directories 

When people search for businesses online, they often rely on online directories to find the information they need. 
Adding your business to these directories can streamline the way potential customers find you. 
Moreover, many online directories consider the quality of your listing when deciding how businesses are ranked in local search results. 
This indicates that by investing time in creating a detailed and accurate listing, you can improve your chances of securing a better position in local search results. 
TIP: For those wanting to target the local area, and find local business directories, a good tool is the advanced search tactics on Google to return the most appropriate search results. With this tool, you can deep dive into industry-specific directories and separate out those directory listings you pay for from those that are free. 
Here are some essential tips for creating an exceptional online directory listing: 
1. Ensure thorough and accurate details in your listing, covering vital information such as your business name, address, contact number, and website. 
2. Use additional sections to add extra information, links, and images to enrich your listing. 
3. Incorporate relevant keywords in your listing to boost your business's visibility when people search for related terms. 
4. Keep your listing updated regularly, ensuring it reflects any changes to your business information. 
By following these guidelines, you can craft an online directory listing that not only helps you reach a wider audience of potential customers but also improves your local search ranking. 
Do not forget Search Engines; you will know that Google is by far the world's number one search engine. Yet, Bing Places are worth a shout too, so that your business can get found on Bing search results and Bing Maps. 
Here are a couple of helpful links: 

Free listings UK Business Directories (with helpful hyperlinks) 

To summarise............ 

Local citations play a pivotal role in local business SEO by linking your business to a specific area, enhancing visibility in local search engine results.  
To initiate the process, input your business information into the mentioned directories and explore specialised directories relevant to your industry. Maintain consistent business details and regularly update listings to reflect any changes. 
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Our top-tier web design services are particularly beneficial for start-ups and smaller businesses based in Watford, St Albans and Hemel Hempstead. 
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