Insider SEO Tip - Claim All of Your Online Business Listings (Not Just Google My Business)

How to Claim and Verify Your Online Business Listings to Grow Citations

Citations and backlinks are still the backbone of any local SEO strategy. A citation is an online reference to your business’ name, address and phone number (NAP). Online referral services use citations to list businesses such as Google, Yellowpages, Angie’s List etc. Unlike a backlink, a citation does not need to link back to your website for you to gain credit and the accompanying SEO juice. As long as the NAP information is correct and congruent across your entire web presence; website, Google My Business, referral sites, social media, etc. then you are reaping the benefits of your citations. If your NAP is inconsistent or contains errors, Google’s search algorithm will become confused, hurting your search ranking and causing you to miss out on valuable search engine traffic.

Claiming Your Online Business Listings

So how do you claim and verify your online citations? Services like Google pull citation information from the databases of large business data aggregators. While you can alter NAP info directly in Google My Business, Google still checks this info against the data of these aggregators. To ensure your NAP info is correct and consistent you want to cut out the middleman and head straight to the source.

There are 4 major business data aggregators responsible for most business citations in the US, Acxiom, Infogroup, Neustar / Localeze and Factual. You will want to visit each of these sites and either claim your listing or verify the information within to ensure its accuracy. Each site has a slightly different way of claiming your business. Most require you have access to the phone line with which your main business phone number is connected so you can receive a verification call or text. In some cases, or if you cannot access your main business phone, you may be required to scan and send in a copy of your LLC or DBA.

Just be sure to keep all of your business info consistent. If you include a 1 in front of your phone number in one listing, be sure it’s there in all listings. If you include LLC or Inc at the end of your business name, it must be present across all platforms.

Take a look at some of our other posts about SEO to learn more. And as always, if you have any questions about web marketing or want to take your business to the next level, drop us a line!


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iPhone users will now exclusively search with Google. Is your business prepared?

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10 Seabrook Restaurants Affected by Highway 146 Expansion

Highway 146 expansion threatens to close or relocate several Seabrook restaurants

Plans for the expansion of State Highway 146 in Seabrook have been in place since 2012 but construction isn’t set to begin until next year (2018). The project, expected to cost more than $200 million, is a welcome relief to many. The expansion promises to relieve the congested Seabrook/Kemah area of time robbing, parking lot like traffic on highway 146 at rush hour. Commuters have reported spending anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour a day, each way stuck in traffic just on the short 3 mile stretch of 146 in Seabrook.

The highway 146 expansion isn’t welcome news to all Seabrook residents however. While traffic may be lighter, many local restaurants and business will either have to pack up and move or close their doors for good. The new construction will cut right through the property of a few current businesses and knock on the front door of others. In all, expanding 146 will take away over 34 acres of commercial land from the Seabrook and Kemah area.

The City of Seabrook is working with local business owners to reduce the impact this project has on their businesses. According to the Chron, the city has allotted an $800,000 stabilization fund to help impacted businesses relocate or renovate their properties to accommodate for the change.

So who will be affected? Which of your favorite Seabrook eats may be closing, moving or renovating? Here are 10 that we know of so far with more sure to come once the beginning of construction nears.

Taco Bell x KFC

Already closed

Popeyes

Already closed

Neptunes Subs

Relocating within Seabrook

Waffle House

Sonic

McDonalds

Wild West BBQ

Mario’s

Tookies

Kauferhaus


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El Tiempo Webster Opening Late 2017

El Tiempo Webster to finally open doors after years of delays

Could Webster finally see the doors open to the highly anticipated El Tiempo Cantina located on I45? After over 4 years of waiting and wondering why such a prime location sits stagnant, Webster residents could be enjoying El Tiempo’s famous fare by the end of the year.

A series of lawsuits and legal back and forth has kept the cantina from opening its doors though a franchising deal was negotiated back in May of 2013. Now the grueling legal delays seem to have ended. As reported by Bizjournals, the lawsuits have been dismissed and on July 20th the Lorenzo family (owners of the El Tiempo chain) have announced a late 2017 opening.

The El Tiempo Webster location will be operated by the Lorenzo family, a deviation from the original plan for the latest edition to the Mexican food chain. Originally, a franchising agreement was reached between the Lorenzo’s and Liquid Gold Hospitality to allow Liquid Gold to operate the new location with the use of the El Tiempo marks, recipes, management style and other licensed items.

After initial delays in construction all renovations halted when the company that runs the El Tiempo chain, Domco Inc. terminated the license agreement. Domco alleged Liquid Gold had refused to pay invoices for construction work.

Liquid Gold then filed a counter lawsuit, claiming Domco breached the franchising contract. So the half renovated restaurant sat, empty, caught in a legal limbo, somberly waiting for the day the smells of delicious Tex-Mex wafted through its rooms.

That is until now. After a legal stalemate the parties have set aside their differences and decided to sign a joint dismissal of the lawsuits. The Lorenzo family has teamed up with Jason and David Felt to make the late 2017 opening a reality.

Stay tuned to the CRISP Blog for any updates or developments.


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5 Internet Marketing Tips for Your Business

5 Simple Internet Marketing Tips to Update Your Business' Online Presence

Whether you own a restaurant, run a law firm or anything in between, your online presence is essential. Though just showing up isn’t enough, you must harness that presence and leverage the power of internet marketing to drive customers through your door or clients to your email. The web is ripe with internet marketing tips, most of which require a lot of time to employ and even longer to see any return. What can you do now to vamp your web presence and see returns quickly? The answer to that question almost always ties back to Google and other search engines. How does your business appear when people search for you or the service you offer? Do you appear at all? How does your site look and function on a smart phone?

All of these things factor into how you are found online and the impression you make on potential customers and clients. If neglected, a poor web presence can cost you as potential clients will go to competitors who are easier to find and more appealing online.

Let’s dive into some internet marketing tips that will keep you atop the game.

1. Get Verified by Google

google verified internet marketing

I mentioned how important Google is to your business right? Keep it in mind. It will be a theme and a business code to live by. Google holds a tight grip on over 70% of all searches performed on the web. Does your business appear in Google when you search for it or a related keyword? If not, you need to verify your business with Google.

To do this, jump over to this link and register your business. Once complete all of your business’ information like hours of operation, phone number and GPS location will appear when a customer performs a search.

This is just the surface of verifying your business with Google but it is an essential first step. To go deeper you can link your website to your Google+ account and connect your site to Google’s Web Master Tools to monitor website traffic and other data. (We recommend you leave the latter to the professionals. Shoot us a message if you want to learn more about what’s possible with Google.)

2. Google 360 View

 

You know that cool little virtual tour you can take of some businesses when you find them in Google, like Google’s street view but inside? That is Google’s 360 View and you can have one of your business too!

Making a good first impression online is crucial. Allowing your customers to take a quick virtual tour of your restaurant or gym is a great way to impress them quickly and make their decision easy. So how do you get one? Just call a Google trusted photographer like our friends over at Captiv Creative (say you find out about them from the CRISP Blog).

3. Mobile Friendly Website

Nearly 80% of all Google searches are performed on a mobile device. If you haven’t updated your website’s design in the last few years, chances are it doesn’t display very well on many new smart phones and tablets. A modern, responsive design is essential. If your site doesn’t perform well on mobile, your Google search rankings will be harshly affected, not to mention the potential customers you are turning off due to an outdated design.

Google has created a mobile friendly site test that will give you a grade based on your site’s mobile performance. Head over to this link and enter your site url. Chances are you won’t like your score.

Send us your test results and let us see how we can help you perform better on mobile devices.

4. Stay Active on Social Media

One of the easiest internet marketing techniques to keep your business and brand top of mind is staying active on social media. Don’t let your past customers forget about you. Post regularly so you stay in front of them. Next time they are craving your fare or are in need of your service you will be atop their list of choices.

Staying active on social media also benefits your rankings in Google. Social signals are one of the top 10 most influential ranking factors according to Moz

Feel like you don’t have the time to post regularly? Try scheduling out your social media campaign with a tool like Facebook Scheduling or Hootsuite. This allows you to sit down once and put your social media game on auto pilot.

Just can’t imagine adding social media to your already overflowing to-do list? Allow us to manage your accounts for you. We offer full service internet marketing packages and customized social media management. Check out our services.

5. Update Tired Old Photos

Quality photos may be the most important piece of your online portrayal. Do the photos on your Google Business account, Facebook page and website portray your brand massage and shine a positive light on your business? Are your photos out-dated? Are there photos of people who no longer work for you or of furniture you have replaced?

Take a look at your photos across your various accounts and sites. If they need updating, let our guys at Captiv Creative know you will need some additional photos along with your Google 360 View.

Bonus Tip! Start a Blog

 

A blog is arguably the best way to climb the rankings in Google and offer value to your past and future clientele. Why do you think we started the CRISP Blog you are reading now?

By writing blog content based around strategic keywords you can turbo boost your Search Engine Optimization strategy and climb above your competition. You can also use blog posts to rank for keywords you are not currently ranking for.

If your content is credible and valuable, your blog will establish you as an authority in your industry, increasing customers’ trust in your brand and product promise.

Fancy yourself a writer? Great! Don’t? No worries, I would love to write your business’ blog posts. Contact us to find out how a blog could help your business grow.


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Latest news on abandoned El Tiempo Cantina in Webster, Texas

Latest News on the abandoned El Tiempo Cantina in Webster, Texas

20237 N Interstate 45, formerly the Big Ben Tavern is a prime commercial location in the thriving Webster area. So why has the property been empty for the better part of the last 5 years?

Many looked forward to the proposed opening of an El Tiempo Cantina in this location, a staple well established in Houston’s obsession with fajitas and margaritas. Promised with a May 2015 opening, locals were let down and continue to drive past a potential Tex-Mex hotspot seemingly abandoned and dilapidated.

El Tiempo Webster was to be the first franchised location of Domco Inc’s El Tiempo chain. Liquid Gold Hospitality purchased the franchise license with intent to eventually open 18 of their own El Tiempo locations. So what happened to halt the opening of this highly anticipated cantina? Let’s start from the beginning, it gets juicy.

May 2013

The Galveston County Daily News releases plans for Houston Tex-Mex legend Maria Ninfa Rodriguez Laurenzo’s grandson, Domenic Lorenzo to open an El Tiempo in the former Big Ben Tavern, after renovations.

April 2014

After nearly a year of renovation construction, Domco Inc. terminates the license agreement after claims that Liquid Gold’s payments for renovations bounced, according to Connection’s Biz Buzz. Construction halts. Domco demands Liquid Gold return all trade dress and marks, including the El Tiempo sign which still hangs over the establishment. Liquid Gold refuses.

Liquid Gold claims they instructed Domco to hold the checks and wait to cash them until the renovations were inspected.

Anthony Buzbee told the Houston Chronicle, “We asked that [the checks] not be cashed until we could find out if the construction company—owned by the El Tiempo folks—had actually done the work they claimed. They hadn’t, the money wasn’t owed, and we did not fund the checks. They are using checks they were told not to cash because they didn’t do the work as some excuse to cancel the licensing agreement.”

September 2014

After a refused demand to settle the overdue renovation payments, Domco Inc files a lawsuit against Liquid Gold in federal court claiming the company violated the Lanham Act which governs trademarks and unfair competition, by refusing to return trademark property and continuing with plans to operate as El Tiempo even though the license was terminated by Domco. The lawsuit also pursued Liquid Gold for the payments owed for renovation construction which the franchise license demanded Liquid Gold pay for.

Domenic Lorenzo said this to The Chron in October 2014, “We are awaiting our day in court to stop the licensee from moving forward without our permission, which is what they want to do. That is something we cannot allow for good reasons.”

March 2015

Liquid Gold files a counter lawsuit against MKWW Construction, the construction leg of Domco, for $40million. Liquid Gold claims the April 2014 termination of the franchise agreement was breach of contract and also raises fraud allegations, claiming MKWW inflated construction invoices and claimed to perform renovations that were not completed. Anthony Buzbee states that MKWW ran over budget by nearly 500%.

“MKWW fraudulently induced EGL to pay invoices in an effort to direct EGL’s construction money in the Webster location to other construction sites, to pay debts of other companies that own other restaurants and to pay large outstanding loans,” the suit says.

February 2017

After little development the case is scheduled to begin court hearings.

Will El Tiempo Webster ever open in this prime location? Only time will tell. Stay tuned to the CRISP blog as we will keep you updated on any advancements in the ongoing lawsuit.


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