A new idea on the Internet is only the newest idea for a short time – so keeping up with online marketing trends can seem to be daunting. But it doesn’t have to be. If you remember that your goal is to help people searching for your product or service find (and click on) your company, you can keep the task ahead in perspective.
Forbes sums up search engine optimization as a game that used to just be about relevance, search volume, and competitiveness. But now searchers are becoming savvier and searches are becoming more specific – so sites like yours need to adapt.
In order to make sure people looking for a company like yours find your company (and not a competitors) you need to make sure you are doing everything you can to help search engines direct those potential customers your way. And while search engine optimization, like everything on the Internet, is an evolving practice, the principles remain largely the same.
The first principle to remember is that you need to be a part of the search. That means including the right keywords on your site to show up in search results changing people from searchers to potential customers. There are a lot of tools that can help you determine which words and phrases people are searching for that should be included in your website copy.
Being a part of searches also means answering questions – especially questions that mobile users might be asking in search of a quick answer. It also means focusing on local searchers. Forbes reported that “50% of mobile users who perform a local search visit a store within one day. In other words, if your site and content aren’t ranking in local search, you’re missing out on a huge influx of wallet-in-hand visitors.”
And while it’s tempting to want your business to appear in the first page of Google searches for “marketing firm” it’s probably not the best strategy to pursue. There’s a difference between someone searching “marketing firm” and someone searching “small business marketing Naperville.” And the biggest difference is one is a lot likelier to become your customer. So even though fewer people may be searching that exact phrase, it’s likely to have a better return for your business. Working to make sure your site is the first result for those searchers can pay off.
Buddingh & Associates now has software to analyze how your site is ranking for specific keywords in Google, Bing and Yahoo. The software also helps to identify new profitable keywords for your small business to go after. Additionally, we can analyze your competitors rankings. This information can be very helpful in improving your search engine rankings and targeting valuable keywords.
The other principle of search engine optimization is to remember how people are searching. Today, “for Google, nearly 50 percent of all traffic is mobile. Your mobile site, now more than ever, needs to be equal in presence, content and searchability as your desktop site.” Read our article, "Alert! Major mobile change from Google" to learn about Google's recent mobile-friendliness change and the major impact it may have on your small business.
When people are on their mobile devices they are dedicating a lot of that time to social media. Developing a strong social media presence not only helps reach customers directly on those platforms but can also help increase your search presence – with a search returning your website, Facebook and Twitter pages among the top results.
And of course, traditional methods of PR still apply – making sure your company appears in articles by local journalists and Top 10 lists of best local service providers helps your company appear in more search results from trusted sources.
Consumers know that the science and technology behind search engines is improving and that they can be more demanding in their searches. By playing into their specificity and reaching them on all the platforms they are using you can find them and turn searchers into shoppers with just one click.
If you would like assistance with your company's search engine optimization or would like us to analyze your current keyword rankings, please contact us atwww.BuddinghAssociates.com.
Jeanne M. Buddingh is founder and partner in Buddingh & Associates, Inc., an award-winning strategic marketing consulting firm in Naperville, IL. Contact her at (630) 961-4504 or visit www.Buddinghassociates.com.