Every business wants to be on page one of Google search results. Most are willing to throw hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars a month to hire SEO companies to improve their ranking. Unfortunately, too many are getting ripped off. Algorithms aside, Search Engine Optimization isn’t complicated. If your website is user-friendly, consistently updated, and provides your customer with answers; you’re well on your way to page one of Google results. However, you won’t know if your SEO efforts are working unless you monitor your search standings.
If you don’t already have a Google Analytics account, open one immediately. It will take a few weeks to get a good understanding of where your traffic is coming from, what their activity is like and any relevant demographic information. It’s important to check your referrer log regularly to track where your visitors are coming from and the search terms they’re using to find your site. Key points:
- The ‘drop-off’ percentage, is the percentage of visitors that exit at the home page. A good drop off rate should be under 50%. Observe the amount of time visitors spend looking at the home page. Is your website user-friendly and easy to navigate? What keywords are people using to find your website, and are they relevant to someone looking to hire your services?
- The flow of traffic helps you understand what visitors find most important; for example, Home—Pricing—Reviews—Contact. What are your customers are going to your website to find? Optimize your home page and menu to cater to your customer. Simplifying content and website structure will help facilitate the flow of information and Google will recognize your business as a reputable solution to the search query.
- Google Keywords will show you how to tailor your content to optimize search terms to your target market. You can see how many people Google search relevant keywords to your services both locally and nationally. This will also help if you wish to pursue a Google Adwords campaign later on.
Regularly updating your website’s blog is integral to a good search ranking. Think of posting articles, information and tips that your customer will find useful. The more time that users spend on your website will help boost your brand and make you look more credible. People want to see you as an expert in your industry. Giving free advice in a post that is keyword rich or something that can be shared with friends and family is integral to creating a reputable brand.
I’ve seen so many clients waste thousands of dollars on SEO companies making false promises. I want my clients to succeed online and the first step is to be educated. There is no shortcut to page one. Having a website that is simplified, user-friendly and consistently updated is the key to online success. The first step is knowledge.