Online marketing can be tiring! That’s where UpCity comes in. As a trusted advocate for small businesses, we’re here to navigate you through the piles of confusing and suspicious offers. UpCity will lead you in the right direction by providing easy insights and simple solutions for your business marketing plan. Members receives an in-depth, personalized action plan to help optimize their site, and our team is here to help you along the way.  Each week, we’re featuring an in-depth look at one of the recommended tasks built into the UpCity software.


MerchantCircle began as a simplified online marketing platform in 2005. Now, it’s grown into an engaging platform with more than 1.7 million local business owners. As one of the largest local business directories, MerchantCircle‘s free web network connects customers and merchants together. The local and social web resource offers local business and services for its visitors to engage with.

For local customers, the directory is a great place to find expert advice in your city. In addition, you can search for nearby products, services, and competitive quotes from a large network of quality merchant shops.

For local businesses, a listing will enter into MerchantCircle’s detailed database of local, trusted businesses. At the same time, a MerchantCircle listing will help boost your visibility and rankings in Google, Bing, and Yahoo. A MerchantCircle profile provides a quality link back to your website with this recommended local link-building tactic.

Business owners can promote their business and gain more customer leads through a variety of free strategies and tools offered on the platforms. Merchants can: connect with others, create a profile, upload photos and videos, write blog posts, publicize events, create promotional coupons or deals, send out newsletters, read expert advice, answer questions, work with widgets outside of MerchantCircle, and much more.

Registering for a MerchantCircle local listing is easy. Follow the simple steps below to claim your listing.

How To Complete a New Listing:

1. Begin at

2. Click “Join Now,” which is located at the top right-hand corner of the screen.

3. Fill out the business information to register, including Business Name, Phone, and Address.  *Note: Make sure the details are correct and standardized across all local directory listings.

4. Ensure all data is consistent. Carefully review the information before moving forward.

5. Choose your business’s Top Level Categories. Take your time to select categories that best fit your business, which are used for keywords in the search directory.

6. Create a MerchantCircle Login ID, including Name, Email, and Password.

7. Check that this is your business.

8. As an option, check if you would like to receive Emails and Special Offers, as well as a free website consultation.

9. Hit the “Submit” button.

10. Choose your payment plan or click “No Thanks” at the bottom of the screen.

11. Check your email box for the registration confirmation link.

12. Visit the verified listing to complete and update your entire profile.

13. Then, begin using MerchantCircle’s many free merchant tools in your account.

How To Claim or Update a Current Listing:

1. Begin at

2. Search for your business.

3. Click the business name, and then “Claim Your Business.”  *Note: If you find a duplicate listing, send in a request to remove it.

4. Confirm you are the manager or owner of the business listed on the left side of the pop-up window.

5. Fill out the MerchantCircle Login ID information, including Name, Email, and Password.

6. Check that this is your business.

7. As an option, check if you would like to receive Emails and Special Offers, as well as a free website consultation.

8. Hit the “Submit” button.

9. Choose your payments plan or click “No Thanks” at the bottom of the screen.

10. Check your email box for the registration confirmation link. After your listing is registered, you can now update your listing.

11. Important: Be sure to go into your verified profile to complete your listing and update new business information.

12. After your profile has been completely updated, start to explore other free tools offered by MerchantCircle.

Best Practices For Your MerchantCircle Experience:

Follow some of these best practices to boost your presence throughout MerchantCircle’s large local business network.

  • After your account is created, fill out the business profile with as many details as you can, including hours, descriptions, and photos.
  • Ensure all the local information is consistent. MerchantCircle creates a URL with the business name and phone number, and updating this data later on may cause a lower ranking for your listing.  *Note: Not only is this step important for MerchantCircle, but it’s critical to earn powerful site rankings overall. In particular, the business name, address, domain, email, and phone number should be the same across all directories you’re listed. If Google sees incorrect data across various resources, this decreases the relevancy of your business and will likely lower your SERP ranking.
  • Keep track of your profile reporting and traffic in your account.
  • Stay active on MerchantCircle when you can and test out the free services. Keeping your business engaged will build up your MerchantCircle profile. You will earn a more prominent ranking, and best of all, increase sales and traffic.
  • Leverage the blog platform to showcase your knowledge. You will double your business’s visibility on search engines by displaying business information on a blog, according to MerchantCircle. Posting a blog post creates original content, increasing the overall authority and traffic of the profile page.
  • Connect with other businesses, whether networking with a city neighbor, competitor nearby or across the U.S., fellow business in the industry, or expert in a field you’re interested in.
  • Check out the My Questions and Answers section to get advice from their 1.7 million plus business experts. After you become familiarized with the tool, we encourage your business to provide some feedback as experts as well.
  • MerchantCircle updates their social media accounts (some more than others), which is great to see. Follow MerchantCircle’s Blog, Facebook, Google+, LinkedIn, or Twitter. View smart content and links from their constantly updated social profiles, and stay informed on news and offerings.
  • Why not collaborate with a similar business in a different city? This also helps build up your profile in the eyes of MerchantCircle and can help with getting your profile more prominently ranked.
  • If you sign up for a paid advertising campaign, be aware that packages are set up with auto-renewal billing. The MerchantCircle team very much accommodates customer service and cancellation requests. Ads may drive more customers to your listing but are not needed to find success.
  • Want more help? We encourage you to check out MerchantCircle’s video library of helpful tutorials. In addition, visit the Help Center often to find more answers or provide new ideas.

UpCity members, follow the pathway to complete this task in your UpCity account: Optimize Your Presence > Expand Your Presence > Local 102: Top Local Directories.

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