Google is still the number one search engine. Out of 19.4 billion online searches conducted in July, 13 billion were conducted using Google sites. It’s needless to say getting on the first page of Google is pretty important for small businesses, but how do you do it?
Below is a list of five things Google uses to rank websites.
Content marketing has become an extremely popular way for small businesses to get found online; so much so, that now, simply blogging no longer secures you a top spot on Google. The blog has to meet Google’s quality guidelines. Content is divvied up into five categories, which help Google determine the quality of the post.
- Vital: This is content that is need-to-know information, such as the products and services page of a company’s website.
- Useful: Content that answers questions the company website does not or provides reviews about the company.
- Relevant: Shallow content, such as vague answers to questions, more information on previously discussed topics and topic overviews.
- Slightly relevant: Content that provides information “only marginally related to the topic at hand.”
- Off-topic: Content that by no means relates to the search at hand.
While Google+ may not be the most popular social network it is important for SEO. Google created Google+ to help personalize search results, and it’s the SEO part that differentiates Google+ from sites like Twitter and Facebook.
Vic Gundotra, the head of Google+, said “It’s really the unification of all of Google’s services, with a common social layer.”
Shares, likes, follows
Key factors in Google’s page ranking algorithm are social signals. Simply creating profiles on the top social media networks is not enough. You must keep your pages active.
Don’t know what to share? Start a company blog that answers questions your target audience would be looking for the answers to. If your content is good then it will be shared, which will increase website traffic, inbound links and indexed pages.
The more you share, the more chances you have to own the entire front page of Google search results, not just one spot.
With 25 percent of search clicks now coming from mobile devices it is vital that users are being directed to mobile-optimized landing pages or websites to capture leads.
Ninety-seven percent of consumers use online media when researching products in their local area, according to BIA/Kelsey, and 55 percent (http://www.trendwatching.com/trends/ffactor/) of users look specifically for user reviews.
Ask happy customers to post reviews on Google+ Local, and the reviews will pop up right on the map next to your business name.