Changing Your Business Phone Number? Do it With Utmost Care!

I see you’re trying to update your phone number…

Did you know that changing your phone number could have a HUGE impact on your rankings for local searches if not done correctly?

As part of your business’ NAP (name, address, phone number), the phone number you display on your website should match all other listings for your business on the Internet. Google considers each of these business listings, or citations, that include your NAP information as “votes” confirming the most accurate details for your business. If you have conflicting NAP information, then Google can easily get confused. The result? Potentially, lower rankings and less visibility for local searches.

Did you also know that having the wrong NAP information on one citation could lead to multiple (maybe hundreds!) of incorrect business listings? New citation sources are popping up all the time and many scrape their data from existing sites.

Updating Your Business Phone Number the RIGHT Way

  • Your first step: Test! Test your phone number. You may be saying “duh!” but you would be surprised of the horror stories we have heard. Make sure the correct phone number is entered on your website…and then TEST IT. Imagine the risks of messing that up; missed calls mean missed business.
  • A special note for tracking numbers. If you are adding a toll-free tracking number or replacing your old tracking number, TEST IT. Are the calls being tracked correctly? We recommend using only toll-free numbers as tracking numbers, and we discourage using a local tracking number. There are several citation sources—including Express Update and Acxiom—that do not allow local tracking numbers, or have no way to verify your business listing when you are using a tracking number for your local phone number due to the redirect in place.
  • Now, update everything. Update your Google+, social media, professional profiles, and business citations with the new phone number. This is a long process that can take an immense amount of time, depending on the depth of your local presence. If you’ve been around for a while, expect to put some extra time into cleaning up your old business listings. Tip: Do a search for your old phone number and work your way through the relevant results.

Contact Customer Service

Maybe you already know this, and updating your phone number on your website was just your first step in the process (and what a process it is!), but allow us to help you make this step by contacting Customer Service to make this change for you. We’ll have you up and going in no time!

Laura Johnson
Connect with me
SEO Manager and Web Marketing Strategist
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