What to enter in the two Business Name fields for optimal search resultsThe Belko Experiment…
We get inquires from Web marketers who are not from Canada, but working with and on behalf of their Canadian clients (as much as we –on principle—prefer businesses support other local businesses), we wish everybody all the best with their marketing. Our goal is to encourage everyone to make EFFECTIVE use of FoundLocally.com
For those who want to look at detailed regional maps, for Maritimes, Ontario (plus Toronto-GTA area), and Western Canada… we have a map page with sites.
Listings by non-Canadian Companies are GENERALLY NOT WELCOME on FoundLocally. Our directory is for targeting Canadian consumers or travelers in their OWN COMMUNITY. As such, overseas businesses (Asian Africa, Europe, South & Central America), are not welcome. However, we welcome American companies in close cross-border proximity like Niagara Falls NY , and Sault Ste Marie, Michigan.
But, Pakistan, Los Angeles, or New York City business definitely do NOT meet “local” listing requirements… Don’t WASTE your time trying.
If you are a foreign web marketer, add yourself as a Registered Contact (in the second part of the phone number field put your full phone number with INTERNATIONAL PREFIX. USA companies can just enter area code + phone number in the second phone number field. Use your own corporate email address. This way we can contact you about listings you enter. There is no bias in how fast your listings are approved, so be honest and accurate with this contact information!
Enter your Canadian clients into the most appropriate directory (see the simple Cheat Sheet, below)
What Non-Canadian SEO Firms may not know:
We support SEO efforts by non-Canadian firms working on behalf of Canadian clients. Many of these SEO firms do not
(a) realize the size and magnitude of the country. Canada covers 6 times zones, and is 8,000 kilometres (5,000 miles) from end to end!
(b) have enough geographic knowledge to put listings in the right (or a close/appropriate) community directories
(c) understand that Quebec has certain language-based rules that affect which listings we may accept
This often means that the area codes prompted for a listing do not match the phone number of the company being added. This is an essential part of our quality control to ensure “localness”
How Do We Know a Business IS LOCAL?
To check that listings are local, we check a couple of listing details. We require a proper local address & postal code. We check for a local phone number & area code. Toll-free numbers as a primary number, or Skype numbers do not qualify as ‘local”. We also check the web link to see that it references a local business and that the address and phone number on the website match the listing. If we are suspicious we will conduct a WHOIS confirmation on the domain record to confirm the business is local and/or Canadian.
Which Directory is Right/Best?
Here is a “cheat sheet” to best match the directory, based on a business’s Postal Code prefix (see map at top) and their area code:
|Area Code||FoundLocally.com Directory|
|M||416||Toronto (the registration process will sort this out)|
|P||705||Sudbury (we’ll figure it out, if a listing should be in Sault Ste Marie, which is also area code 705)|
|V||250||Fraser (may also be Okanagan or Rockies but we’ll figure it out)|
|X||ABNorth (which will include Northwest Territories)|
|Y||BCNorth (which will include Yukon)|
Some US listings allowed!
Here are some US communities that MAY BE added to “Canadian” FoundLocally directories that cover cross-border areas and communities.
|http://Vancouver.FoundLocally.com||Point Roberts, WA, Blaine, WA|
|http://Fraser.FoundLocally.com||Fraser Valley northern Washington state, east of “Langley BC”|
|http://Sault.FoundLocally.com||Sault Ste Marie and areas of northern Michigan from Mackinaw to the “UP” (upper peninsula)|
|http://Niagara.FoundLocally.com||Niagara Falls area and Buffalo, NY east to Lockport, NY|
And we have some upcoming sites in early editorial planning (to be active in a year or so)
|http://FoundLocally.com/Kingston||area along the St Lawrence River from Lake Ontario to Lake Chanplain, north of the Adirdondaks|
|http://FoundLocally.com/Windsor||southern Michigan & Detroit area along the St Clair River|
Quebec Business Listings
We have a “Montreal” directory as a catch-all for Quebec-based businesses. These fall into three groups
|Head offices with operations in other (or most other) provinces||Add contact & head office in “Montreal,” clone listings to other provinces and location (see tips for Chains &Franchises)|
May list in English language
|Quebec businesses targeting consumers/visitors form other provinces||Typically tourism & hospitality operatorsMay list in English languageListings may carry over to TransCanadHighway.com site|
|Quebec businesses targeting primarily those in their own communities||Must list in French First (use About Us field) and English as a secondary description (use theProducts/Brands field)|
Businesses close the Ottawa-Gatineau market may add themselves to that directory, rather than the “Montreal” directory. The rules above still apply.
Adding Chains &Franchises and Multi-location businesses
We have an excellent tip sheet elsewhere on our blog. In a nutshell:
1) Don’t add tens or hundreds of virtually identical listings
2) And don’t add them all to ONE DIRECTORY if they have varying postal code prefixes (first letter) and area codes (the three digits before ###-####)
3) Add ONE, and get it approved, and then email us an Excel spreadsheet with all the other locations, names, addresses, phone numbers, and postal codes and upload a logo (web addresses, let-longs, description are optional)… let us deal with cloning and the correct local directories and neighbourhoods (MINIMUM TEN LISTINGS)
If you have Questions
Call or Skype us (403-245-2194) during normal North American business hours. (9 am Eastern to 5 pm Pacific). We’ll be happy to answer your questions.
Add your LOCAL Free Listing to FoundLocally.com