SEO Is Important No Matter Who Your Customers Are
Having good SEO for your business is important for some reasons you never expect. Here at Lieberman Technologies, we’re not much different from the average customer when it comes to learning about companies we do business with. Before we begin a business relationship, we look the company up on Google. We do this Google search whether we are doing web design or installing a business phone system, and we learn some things before we begin to provide services. For instance, we learn where they rank in search engine results, what the search results show us, and how easy it is to learn about them from a search point of view. These search results tell us a great deal.
If we, as a vendor, look up your small business before we work together, what do you think your customers do? Research shows that more than 80% of consumers research a product or business online before making a purchase. Can your customers find your business via search? If so, that’s great. You’ve probably got some good SEO practices on board. But keep in mind that SEO is an ongoing process to keep your business at the top of Google search.
Everybody Wants to Rank First On Google
Ranking first on Google is something that every small business wants. It’s a funny thing to go for if you think about it, though:
- Google never buys your stuff (Ok, unless you are super big time, but we’re talking about small businesses here).
- Google uses robots to decide if you are at the top of the list, not their personal experience.
- Because search results are customized to previous searches, location, and even your age, you can be first on Google for some people and not for others.
- You might be first on Google for something that no one ever searches for. (i.e., Our own Dan Sullivan ranks #1 for “Uniformity and monotony” but no one is ever so bored as to search for that phrase)
Getting ranked first on Google is kind of like playing king of the hill. Sure, you made it to the top, but in the changing landscape of the internet, you can get knocked back down. What sustainable things can you do to keep that top rank?
Where Are You Building Your Business?
First of all, where are you building your business online? If your main web presence is your Facebook page or your website is through Wix or another free site builder, you don’t own it. You are renting it (if you use a paid service) or you are a squatter (if you are getting it for free). Your landlord has the right to move or change your site anytime they want. It’s in the fine print. Facebook is going to be changing even more as legal investigations and judgments progress. For now, you give Facebook “non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license,” to whatever you post publicly on their site. That means you still own it, but you give them the freedom to use it however they want. Wix has similar language in their terms.
If you want to keep your SEO game strong, build it on a self-hosted WordPress website so that you control the changes and architecture of your content. Don’t leave it to chance and hope that your website content will always be viewable and available. Put it where it will remain consistent, and then share the information from your website onto Facebook, Snapchat, or whatever social network comes next.
Building your website (and your SEO equity) on a free or 3rd party site is called digital sharecropping. You are using someone else’s property to grow your business. We recommend a system like WordPress.com if you need the free solution and you are just starting out, but don’t stay there long. As your business grows, you want to get your own place as fast as possible.
Where Do You Rank on Google Now?
When we begin working with SEO customers, we take a comprehensive picture of how their website is doing right now. This gives us a good starting point and lets us know where we can improve a customer’s position in search. You can do it, too. Google your company and a few of the search terms that you want to use to gain customers. Where do you rank? What is your competition doing? How is it different on a phone or a desktop?
Next, talk to your salespeople and your customers. They might be looking for something different than what you are trying to use for your rank. For instance, we talk about an “SEO Plan” around the office in terms of a strategy. It’s a plan for how we’ll do SEO for a customer. Many customers, however, think an SEO Plan is what we would call an “SEO Package,” which is the list of services that we provide over a set amount of time. This matters because we might try to rank on Google for “Evansville SEO Plan” but potential customers are searching for “Evansville SEO Package.”
If you rank first on Google for a phrase but nobody searches for that phrase, you haven’t gained any business through SEO. It’s like handing a $5,000 megaphone to a mime.
Take an Analytical Look at How Your Site Performs
Use Google Analytics and Google Search Console to see what is performing on your site and what isn’t. We look through our customer’s data to help them amplify the things that are working and fix the things that aren’t. We look at their competitors to see where they outrank our customer in SEO and look for weaknesses or opportunities for SEO rich content.
The More Things Change, the More You Can’t Stay the Same
Keeping up with site-speed, software updates, and new features will also help you sustain healthy search results. The free version of Yoast SEO currently gives you over a dozen real-time checks on your blog posts as you write them. As the Yoast SEO plugin comes out with more features, learn and use those added features. Keeping up with the tools as the SEO landscape changes can help your continued success.
A great SEO strategy used to be to load up the bottom of a page with a bunch of keywords in the same font color as your background. After that became obsolete and quit working, content became unreadable as marketers, SEO Consultants, web designers, web developers, and digital marketing experts used so many synonyms to load up their articles, the articles became unreadable. (See what we did there?)
Today, the fight for local SEO has drifted away from mentioning your city and state all over your content to delivering important content to Google via schema markup. This gives the search engine information for rich cards, recipes, local business information, and more.
Be Confident That Customers Can Find You
Once you give us a call and set up an ongoing SEO Plan (or Package, whichever you prefer to call it) we begin to monitor your position on search engines. You can get regular updates and suggestions on how to improve or keep your position and plan ahead for special events, product releases, or even big changes to your business. The more educated you get with your SEO, the more you’ll realize the value of your SEO consultant.
Good SEO can help augment your other marketing. When you put up a billboard or visit a trade show, you’ll know that Google search will help your customers find you afterward. Real, practical Search Engine Optimization can help any business succeed and bring in more customers.
Give us a call or drop us an email to talk more about how good SEO can help your business.