New Study: The Best Citation Sources By City

MIHMORANDUM NO. 1543 | June 26th, 2012Reader Comments (19)

I’m really excited to announce a joint study with Darren Shaw of Whitespark that we’ve just published over on the best citation sources for 93 U.S. cities.

The methodology for the study was pretty simple: using Whitespark’s Local Citation Finder, we looked for some of the most common keywords within 71 local search categories across 53 large US cities, 20 medium-sized cities, and 20 smaller cities. We then scored the sites inversely based on ranking position combined with overall number of occurrences. The sites that appeared most often and with the highest rankings were deemed “best.”

You’ll see some blue bars indicating the relative strength of each citation source within each city.  Very interesting to see the continued dominance of traditional IYP sites like and in less-techy, smaller markets, and the overwhelming prominence of Yelp in coastal markets.

19 Responses to “New Study: The Best Citation Sources By City”

  1. Nyagoslav says at

    Sheer awesomeness here! This is probably the most important guide to city-specific citations that exists. Thanks for the great work, David and Darren!

  2. Rebekah says at

    Thanks, David & Darren! Incredibly helpful!

  3. Zach Russell says at

    Great article. I live in Philadelphia and do a lot of local marketing in the area, this gives great insights as to where I should try to get my inital pages. I appreciate all that you do for the Local SEO community, keep it up!

  4. Bill Parlaman says at

    Pure f’ing gold. Thanks guys.

  5. Jackson Lo says at

    … and the BEST Study. Awesome work David and Darren!

  6. tvanslooten says at

    Interesting study and a very helpful guide when putting together a list of citation sources for clients. Thanks for putting it together and sharing it. Keep up the great work!

    Travis Van Slooten

  7. matthew hunt says at

    Awesome work guys! Interesting to see a lot of the sources are pretty uniform across all cities. Any plans to do other countries like Canada? Thought Darren, being Canadian and all would sneaked that one in there.

  8. Yam Regev says at

    Pure joy. good on ya, guys!

  9. Jim Rudnick says at

    already I’m a thinking “dang…whyn’t I known about some of these…”

    But further – David & Darren….as Matt said….how about a Canuck flavoured piece too!!!!



  10. Yousaf says at

    We need this for UK!

  11. MiriamEllis says at

    David & Darren,
    That is just super! Thanks so much for the work on this, guys.

  12. Dana DiTomaso says at

    Fabulous! I eagerly await the Canadian version. :) Let me know if you need some research help with that.

  13. Kevin Getch says at

    This is a phenomenal tool! Thank you so much for your hard work on this!!!

  14. Steve Bedwell says at

    London UK please

  15. Jim Jinright says at

    This is an awesome resource and very timely. Thanks for all you do for the SEO community!

  16. Chris G. says at

    Greate article David and thanks for sharing the post. It is helpful.


  17. Paul Dumas says at

    Thanks for the great study. Interestingly, many cities have a state, city, newspaper or TV directory included, such as in Dallas for WFAA or Phoenix for AZ Central…Might note that these are actually all fed from the FREE listing. We’ve seen great success in producing multiple citations from this single listing. You simply have to verify the listing and be patient as the feed populates.

    Thanks for continuing to serve as the Guru of Local Search.

  18. Nick Johansson says at

    Why does Canada always get left out? We are like the little brother that’s always ignored. (BTW we dont all live in igloos – only about 57% of the population)

  19. Asher Elran says at

    I think that going for just the best citations would not be the best stategy. Any small business should list there business not just the top ones but every available citation source for their city.

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