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The Ultimate Guide to Local Citation Software

Local citations play a crucial role in local SEO. They help increase your visibility and discoverability in local searches.

But what exactly are local citations and how do they work?

Local citations are essentially mentions of your business name, address and phone number (NAP) on online directories, review sites and other authoritative websites. Some key examples are Google My Business, Yelp, Facebook and Apple Maps.

These citations act as votes of confidence for your business. They signal search engines like Google that your business is legitimate and relevant for searches in your geographic area.

The more citations you have, the better you tend to rank in local pack and map listings.

 consistent local citations is a key local SEO ranking factor

Having accurate, consistent local citations is a key local SEO ranking factor

However, the process of manually building and updating citations across dozens of sites is extremely tedious and time-consuming.

And that’s where local citation software comes in…

Local citation software takes care of finding citation opportunities and accurately pushing your NAP data to all relevant sites automatically.

The main benefits of using local citation tools and services include:

  • Save time and effort – No need to manually submit and update dozens of listings
  • Increase consistency – Ensure NAP data is accurate on all sites
  • Expert guidance – Leverage knowledge of local SEO experts
  • Identify issues – Find duplicate and incorrect listings

In this comprehensive guide, we will cover:

  • The best 12 local citation software tools
  • Key features and capabilities
  • Pricing and plans
  • Pros and cons of each platform

So if you want to simplify local citation management, boost your local SEO, and ultimately get more customers, read on!

Overview of the Local Citation Software Landscape

Overview of the Local Citation Software Landscape

Before diving into the top tools, it’s helpful to understand the landscape and different types of local citation software available.

Broadly, there are three main categories:

1. Citation Building Tools

These tools focus specifically on finding and claiming citation opportunities on relevant directories, aggregators and review sites.

For example, Whitespark and Moz Local can perform a scan to identify potential citations and then facilitate submitting your NAP data to those sites either manually or via API connections.

2. Management & Monitoring Platforms

These provide a wider range of capabilities for managing your full local SEO strategy beyond just citations.

Key features include monitoring rankings, managing online reviews, website optimization tools, lead generation and reporting. Examples are Yext, Synup and BrightLocal.

3. DIY Tools & Resources

There are also some free online tools and resources for doing citation building yourself.

For instance, Local SEO Checklist provides guides and a free citation audit tool to assess gaps without directly submitting listings for you.

The best approach is using a paid software service combined with some DIY efforts. This ensures you get automation benefits while also staying hands-on where needed.

Top 11 Local Citation Software Services

Top 11 Local Citation Software Services

There are a wide variety of paid tools and services to consider for automating your local citations. I’ve researched and reviewed the top 12 options currently available based on features, pricing, and ease-of-use.

1. Whitespark

Whitespark is one of the leading citation building tools. Key capabilities include:

  • Citation Finder – identify existing and missing listings
  • Local Rank Tracker – monitor keyword rankings
  • Reputation Builder – generate more positive online reviews

They use all major data aggregators to push listings across hundreds of sites. You can choose between DIY and done-for-you plans.

Pricing:

DIY submission tools start at $99/month. Managed citations service costs about $4-5 per listing.

Pros

  • Very broad reach and coverage
  • Track ranking improvements
  • Identify duplicate listings

Cons

  • Expensive managed service
  • No integration with Google My Business

Overall, Whitespark is a top choice for large multi-location brands but can be costly over time.

2. Moz Local

Moz Local is a reliable citation service brought to you by the prominent SEO tool Moz.

It utilizes all the main aggregators along with Foursquare to distribute listings. Key features:

  • Citation dashboard shows accuracy issues
  • Syncs with Google My Business
  • Merges duplicate listings

Pricing: 

$129 per year for up to 8 submissions

Pros

  • Trusted tool from industry leader
  • Good support included
  • Easy-to-use interface

Cons

  • Limited number of monthly submissions
  • Can be slow to update listings

Moz Local strikes a nice balance between automation and customization for SMBs.

3. ReviewTrackers

As the name suggests, ReviewTrackers specializes in managing online reviews in addition to citations.

Key features include:

  • Review monitoring across 100+ sites
  • Email review requests to customers
  • Citation building for accuracy and consistency

Pricing

Starts at $50/month per location

Pros

  • Tight integration between reviews and citations
  • Nice dashboard and reporting
  • Very competitively priced

Cons

  • More limited citation distribution
  • Fewer tools compared to all-in-one platforms

If you want an affordable solution focused specifically on reviews and citations, ReviewTrackers is a great fit.

4. Yext

Yext is a well-funded startup taking a tech-centric approach to local SEO services.

It allows you to:

  • Manage listings from a central dashboard
  • Distribute via Factual and Foursquare aggregators
  • Access performance reporting

Pricing:

 $499 per year billed monthly

Pros

  • Modern platform with apps
  • Quick updates to listings
  • Good support resources

Cons

  • Limited to two aggregators
  • Requires annual contract

Yext offers convenience and automation for multi-location franchises.

5. Local SEO Checklist

Local SEO Checklist is a unique free tool for DIY citation building. Key features:

  • Free citation audit to identify existing and missing listings
  • Optimization guides and templates
  • Track website traffic and rankings

Pricing: 

Free citation audit tool. Paid plans start at $47/month.

Pros

  • Great for bootstrapped small businesses
  • Very easy to use with helpful resources
  • Alternative to paid services

Cons

  • Have to manually submit listings
  • Limited automation capabilities

Local SEO Checklist is best suited for hands-on users with smaller budgets.

6. SEMrush

SEMrush is a prominent marketing suite that recently launched local SEO capabilities including:

  • Listings management for accuracy and consistency
  • Detailed location data reporting
  • Integration with Google My Business

Pricing: 

$99/month billed annually

Pros

  • Leverages huge existing database
  • Powerful analytics features
  • Trusted brand in digital marketing

Cons

  • Only available in US, UK and Australia
  • Steep learning curve

SEMrush is ideal for established agencies already using it for client reporting.

7. BrightLocal

In addition to BrightLocal’s robust local SEO platform covered above, they also offer a DIY citation service focused specifically on building listings accurately.

It allows you to:

  • Select individual citation sites to submit to
  • Pay per successful submission ($2-5 each)
  • Avoid monthly fees

Pros

  • Affordable pay-as-you-go model
  • Target the most important industry directories
  • Ownership of listings

Cons

  • Manual process without automation benefits
  • You still have to identify best citations

BrightLocal’s DIY citation builder achieves a nice balance between automation and transparency.

8. Advice Local

AdviceLocal emphasizes accuracy and trust across all citations:

  • Fix inconsistencies and merge duplicates
  • Manual verification of listing ownership
  • Ongoing monitoring and updates

Pricing:

Custom quotes, typically several thousand dollars annually

Pros

  • Very hands-on consultation and support
  • Get expert recommendations
  • Extended service contracts

Cons

  • Expensive for most small businesses
  • Lack transparency in directories used

AdviceLocal offers premium concierge-style service best suited to funded startups.

9. Tribe Local

Tribe Local is a managed marketplace catering to marketing agencies and franchises supporting local businesses.

They provide:

  • Dashboard to manage clients’ local SEO
  • Tools for managing citations, reviews, GMB and more
  • Custom onboarding and support

Pricing: 

Custom enterprise quotes only

Pros

  • Robust platform for multi-location brands
  • Knowledge base for local marketers
  • Dedicated account manager

Cons

  • Very expensive with minimums
  • Not viable for small businesses

Tribe Local aims to empower agencies through technology integrations.

10. My Presences

My Presences provides an alternative DIY approach to monitoring and maintaining local SEO accuracy.

Features include:

  • Listings management across 50+ sites
  • Identify duplicate and incorrect listings
  • Track website analytics

Pricing: 

$29/month or $290/year

Pros

  • Very affordable subscription model
  • Easy-to-use interface
  • Good support forums

Cons

  • Still manual submission process
  • Very light on automation

My Presence is best for service area businesses on tight budgets.

11. Uberall

Uberall is a startup local marketing platform expanding quickly across Europe.

It focuses on three pillars:

  • Listings management
  • Review generation
  • Voice search optimization

Pricing:

Custom quotes only

Pros

  • Multilingual capabilities
  • Voice search expertise
  • International directories

Cons

  • Limited US availability
  • Expensive enterprise targeting

Uberall excels at supporting global expansion initiatives.

Key Factors to Consider When Choosing Local Citation Software

Key Factors to Consider When Choosing Local Citation Software

With so many options for automating local citations, how do you determine what’s best for your business? Here are 5 key factors to consider:

1. Accuracy and Consistency

The top priority is making sure your NAP information is 100% accurate and consistent across all sites. This includes identifying and merging any duplicate listings.

Choose a service that scans listings, spots issues, and seamlessly updates information.

2. Directory Coverage and Reach

Maximize your exposure by getting listings on all relevant directories and aggregators. Consider the specific sites covered and whether key industries or geographic listings are included.

Ideally combine a data aggregator with some manual submissions.

3. Google My Business Integration

Given its prominence in local search, you want software that will specifically manage and optimize your Google My Business listing for maximum visibility.

4. Budget and Value

Prices and capabilities vary widely, so outline must-have features and compare options to your budget.

Balance automation with transparency into exactly where and how listings are being built.

5. Ownership and Maintenance

As your business changes, listings will need to be updated so make sure you maintain ownership and control.

Evaluate the overhead required to keep them current plus any hidden fees.

Leave no stone unturned when evaluating software against these 5 criteria relevant to your business needs and goals!

Conclusion – My Top Recommendations

Local citations present a major opportunity to improve your visibility and attract more customers from search. But effectively managing listings across dozens of sites is extremely tedious and time-consuming without the right software.

After extensively evaluating the various options available right now, here are my top picks:

Best Overall – Moz Local strikes the best balance between automation, customization and value for money. It’s accurate, easy to use, and affordable for most small businesses.

Best for Agencies – BrightLocal has the most comprehensive capabilities to manage multi-location clients including in-depth reporting and analytics.

Best DIY Option – The free Local SEO Checklist tools provide tremendous guidance if you have the bandwidth to submit your own listings.

Best for Voice Search Uberall offers leading expertise around voice and multi-lingual search for international brands.

At the end of the day, the right local citation software all comes down to matching business context like locations, industry and priorities to the features and pricing that make sense.

I hope this guide has provided clarity around the options at your disposal to drive more local search visibility.

The key next step is to start with a free trial of my top pick Moz Local. Experience the citation management dashboard for yourself and leverage their concierge onboarding.

Remember – every additional accurate local listing represents another vote of confidence for your business to connect with the right searchers.

Frequently Asked Questions For Local Citation Software

Here is most common FAQs I hope these questions help a lot and radius you’re confused check these FAQs:

How many citations should I have?

There is no definitive number, but most experts recommend building at least 30-50 key local citations relevant to your industry and location targeting local consumers.

How long does it take to see results from citations?

It typically takes 2-3 months to start seeing incremental improvements in local pack rankings as the search engines process your new citation signals over time.

Can I manage Google My Business listings?

Many of the top services like Moz Local, Yext and Uberall include direct integration with Google My Business to easily manage and optimize your listing.

What are the penalties for duplicate listings?

Having contradictory location NAP details across citations can dilute signals to search engines. The tools above help proactively detect and merge duplicates.

What citations should I focus on first?

After Google My Business, the top local citation sources tend to be directories like Yelp, Foursquare, Infogroup, Yellowpages and industry-specific sites relevant to your business.

How much budget do I need?

Services range from free DIY checklists to enterprise platforms costing thousands per month. But affordable options for SMBs are around $100-200 per month for comprehensive capabilities.

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