“I want to be on the first page of Google” is now the most common response we get at Trusted when we ask people what they want for their marketing goals, and there seems to be a confusion amongst local Saskatchewan business owners as to how this actually happens, so we thought we’d lay it out in layman’s terms.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a search engine’s “natural” or un-paid (“organic”) search results.
To be on page 1 of Google for your category of business locally is a great goal, especially as recent stats tell us that over 80% of all click-throughs to websites on Google searches take place on the first page of Google. Not being there means you will miss out on leads, and that means those on the 1st page have a significant competitive advantage. Except how you get on that first page can be tricky, especially if you are in a very competitive category ( Real Estate, Auto Dealers, Mortgage Brokers for example). Here we outline the main points to consider.
1. You need a website – and it needs to be a good one!
Your website is a TOOL, and it should be out there working for your business 24/ 7. It’s not just about the ‘look’ of the site, it’s about how well it works overall for good SEO – you need to consider the navigation ( how easy is for your visitors to get around and find the important information), the keywords ( if you are a Plumber make sure it is on your website often), include the location ( if you are a Plumber in Regina say so ) , choose appropriate images and have good links ( social links, links to other sites that make sense and links to your site from other sites that make sense)
( contact us at Trusted Marketing Services if you want to discuss your website – or lack of.)
2. You need to have a blog
Content marketing is a phrase you may have heard bandied about; in reality it means writing new, quality, relevant content about your company and your category – ideally in a blog on your website on a regular basis – This just keeps your website up to date in the eyes of Google ( as Google determines who gets ranked where it’s important to impress her and do what she values)
(check out our Saskatchewan marketing blog here )
3. You need to be social
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, Linkedin, Google + – pick whats best for your business and build an audience for your content- quality web traffic from your social media to your website is valued by Google and if you are spending all your efforts sending people to your Social media as the final destination you are WRONG – the social should be the tool to help your www. not the other way around! If you don’t take social media seriously and do it well you are really missing out on the chance to connect with your local audience and share your company personality & values.
4. Your overall marketing strategy
Assuming you DO have a strategy? Too many local business separate online and offline marketing and this is a big mistake, in today's world in many categories online is MORE important than offline, as consumers shop and make more buying decisions online than in person. Your website should be your best sales person, it should reflect who you are & what you are doing at all times.
( if you are not sure about your marketing strategy contact us for a consultation )
5. Online local directories
Online local directories are important to Google ( as they layout information in a logical manner) and I predict they will become more so as more and more websites come online locally- Being listed on a good local online directory ( like www.trustedsaskatoon.com and www.trustedregina.com ) will help your Google rankings as it shows you are recognized locally in your category, also if the online directory is well ranked in your category you benefit from that – you can get on the first page of Google by being on their directory; along with the others in your category of course. ( Trusted Directories have many, many other advantages & benefits over your regular local online directories – contact us to find out more).
6. Google products
Google Adwords, Google Plus, YouTube etc..etc.. Buy them, use them – Google likes when you buy INTO their products.
A word of warning ..DO NOT put all your eggs into the Google Adwords basket to get on the 1st page of Google – this is not a smart long-term marketing decision. Google Adwords cost is going to keep rising as more people enter the auction and you can’t all be on the first page…make ORGANIC your priority ( we know customers prefer organic search results too)
At the end of the day, the most important thing is to allocate time and effort into doing the best job you can online. There is no QUICK fix, this is a race…and it’s not a sprint, it’s a never-ending marathon, and you need to keep running and adapting to the ever-changing conditions or you will fall behind and drop off your prospects and existing customers radars. Don’t be tempted into trying to cheat Google by paying companies to create splash pages, buy backlinks or by falsely boosting your social followers' numbers….. you didn’t become successful in business by cutting corners, it’s the same way online.
EXCELLENCE TAKES EFFORT
Contact us at Trustedmarketingservices.com today, we are your local and international award-winning Trusted Marketing Agency!