We've all heard the phrase, ‘Google it’. If you want some information, where do you go? You go to Google. You're at the pub quiz and you're trying to cheat and get the answers, what do you do? You Google it. You want to buy a new sofa, what do you do? You Google it.
Do you know, it's the same for your industry? There are people day in and day out, every hour, every minute of the day on Google and they're looking for what it is that you do. Therefore, it's essential for the growth of your business that you are found on Google. For some businesses it's going to be much easier than others, but we want to explain some of the basics you can take to help you get found on Google.
Before we kick off, it’s important to state that there are many factors that come into play to getting your business found on Google, in this article, we are looking at the basic principles. There's a lot more to getting found than what we are sharing, but these are some of the simple principles that can be done to help you. Here goes…
1. Setup a Google My Business page
The first thing you need to do is ensure that you have a Google My Business page up and running for your business. This will ensure that when local people are searching for you or what it is that you do, that you're appearing in the search results.
Google My Business gives you the opportunity to input all your business information, so it appears and promotes you on Google. Such information is:
If you make sure that you get that data inputted, then you will have completed the first step. Your next step is then to ask your happy customers to leave reviews of the great work you have done for them. Have them do this on your Google My Business page and this will help with your ranking. Not only that you can also post onto the page with your latest updates and if you do this with links back to your website this is going to help your ranking.
If you have yet to set up a Google My Business page then you can make a start here.
2. Register your website with online directories
A simple step you can take to improve your SEO and stand a greater chance of getting found on Google, is register your business with online directories. There are many online directories where you can do this. To name just a few,
Registering on such directories helps you get found on Google we would suggest spending an hour or two and get this done.
3. Get socially active
We all know that social media is huge, and not only does it help you to get your business name out there, it can also help with your ranking. It’s been said many times that social media does not directly improve your SEO ranking, but results seem to say otherwise.
Google themselves do not seem to say much on this matter but from what we and many other industry experts find is that social media can help your business when it comes to being found on Google.
4. Keep your website regularly updated
It’s important that you work hard to make sure that your website content is being updated on a regular basis. Google want your website to be kept up to date. If your website is only changed or amended once a year, but your competitor down the road is amending it on a weekly basis, who do you think Google prefer? It's important that as much as possible you can keep adding fresh content to your website so that when Google come searching, they're finding fresh content.
Don’t just sit on your website and leave it with the same pages and content year after year, commit to keeping it fresh and relevant. Add blogs as often as you can. When you have finished projects, spend a couple of hours adding a new case study to your website. When you release new products or services make sure new pages are added. There is certainly no question that if you keep improving and adding good content to your website that this will help you improve your chances of getting found on Google.
5. Keyword research
SEO is not about using any old keywords on your website and thinking it is going to help you, it’s about ensuring you are using the right keywords for your business and that means research is needed. What are the keywords that you should be using on your website and on the backend of your website to help you lift your ranking?
There are different ways to do this but as already mentioned we are covering the basics and one of the simplest ways of doing this is through Google Keyword Planner. Through the planner you can do some basic research and look at what suggested keywords you should be using on your website; how competitive those keywords are and other basic factors that all help you in your research.
6. Optimise the content on the front of your website
Once you know what keywords you need to be using, you then need to make sure that the text on the front end of your website contains those keywords. For example, on your homepage, the text that I see when I come on your website, it needs to contain your keywords. The same on your about page and the services pages and so on.
You cannot just slap the keywords on and hope for the best, it needs to be thought through and done well. The content has to make sense, has to be readable and done professionally. If you're not sure how to do that then you can always hire a copywriter and they'll be able to do that for you. It’s more important more than ever before that the content on the front end of your website is keyword friendly.
7. Optimise the back of your website
Once you have optimised the front of your website then it’s time to go into the back end of your website and get to work. If your website is built on a CMS like WordPress more than likely there will be a plugin installed called Yoast which creates an area for your SEO. Using Yoast you will be able to add the SEO basics which are:
Some of this might sound like a foreign language, but it's not as difficult as it seems. You can learn more about Yoast here.
Of course, there is always the option to get a company like Choose Purple to do this for you.
8. Safe and speedy
Every website now needs to ensure that it is has an SSL certificate installed. This is in place to make sure that your website is safe. A simple way to check this is if you go into Google Chrome and type in your website address and then look at your website address, it should have a little padlock next to it. If it's got that, then your website has an SSL certificate. It not, it will say insecure and that means you don’t have the certificate in place. This is a problem because when your website visitors enter their data in your website you are not protecting that data.
Finally, you've also got to ensure that your website is running quickly. If your website is slow, Google don't like it. So, you need to be loading under five seconds, but ideally under three seconds. Here is another article we wrote about website speed that is worth a read. If you want to check the speed of your website here is a place you can do that.
As you can see there are some simple steps that you can take to help you get found on Google. These are the basics and there is so much more to SEO than we have shared but by applying the above you are making a good start to getting your business found on Google.