Business owners typically come to us because they want two things: a website that can help them get more business than they have now, and a dominating search engine ranking.
When they think of “dominating” on Google, however, they are usually concerned with one of the top three positions for an important keyword. Those are certainly valuable, and that’s a goal we think every marketer should pursue. At the same time, though, it pays to think just a little bit bigger. Go beyond that traditional definition of search engine optimization success and you can actually take up most of the entire page of the user’s search results, or even get them to go straight to your website without even noticing your competitors.
How could either of those scenarios be possible? Understanding the answers comes down to a few key details…
Your Business Can Take Up More Than One Search Entry
Ask the average business owner what the perfect search engine position would look like, and they’ll envision a scenario where their company is listed at the top of Google’s rankings. Just below that, though, would still be several results for their nearest competitors. For someone who is seriously thinking about buying, it’s no trouble at all to keep looking through the other listings.
The answer, then, is to still look to gain the top search spot, but to try to take up other search listings as well. The way to do that is by capitalizing on opportunities to have your content appear on different platforms.
For obvious examples of how this might work, think about the way a search for company name often yields not only their own website, but listings they have on Yelp or LinkedIn. You might also see articles by or about the company listed on major media sites, or previews of videos they’ve uploaded to YouTube. Social media links could show up. There could even be entries for customer reviews, or articles that qualify as breaking news.
Publicize your business in a number of ways online, using the right set of search-friendly terms, and you could take up half or more of Google’s listings for a given query. That doesn’t just dramatically increase the odds the searcher will find your website, it also deprives your competition of their share of search traffic at the same time.
Local and Mobile Searches are Separate Categories
Nearly one-third of all Google searches either have a geographic component, or are for the type of service someone would expect to find in their own neighborhood. For instance, you might get economic statistics from any trusted source, but if you’re looking for a doctor, an ice cream shop, or theater tickets, you’re probably going to want something near you.
This detail is of huge consequence for businesses that rely on local customers. And, it gives them a chance to dominate yet another segment of the search market.
That’s because Google lists local results separately when it determines there is a geographic component – either because the searcher used a city name or because logic suggests it. In those instances, the search engine will filter what it knows about geography and deliver results that aren’t just best, but are also closest. That’s particularly true if the search originates from a smartphone or tablet, since buyers on the go tend to prioritize convenience.
If you stack your website with location indicators, maps, driving directions, and phone numbers, your business will come up at or near the top for all searchers who are close by. That’s a great way to generate walk-in traffic and build a brand in your community. Of course, it relies on a bit of attention to local SEO and a mobile-friendly website.
Digital Assistants and Voice-Assisted Search Can Give You an Edge
It’s clear that search engine optimization is needed when one of your potential customers goes to Google, types something into a search box, and looks through the results. But what happens when they simply speak a question to a digital assistant on their phone, or use a mobile search app?
Whether you realize it or not, search engine is still engaged. But, rather than displaying a list of results, the software may go directly to the piece of information it feels is most relevant (or best answers the question that was asked). That gives a very big preference and priority to the website that’s in a leading search position, since the user may not even see other possible results. Instead, they’ll either go straight to a selected page, or be given the information with the website as a citation.
In either case, that sets the stage for more exploration, or at the very least an increased awareness of a company and brand. So how can a savvy marketer get more of that natural language traffic?
There are two things you can do that will help. The first is to have lots of informative and up-to-date information on your website. Voice searches are almost always long tail in nature, so having lots of content is important because the search parameters tend to be contextual. The other step to take is to phrase headings and subheadings in a natural language format (like questions potential customers may ask you directly). That way, what you have on your site will match up perfectly to what searchers are looking for.
Search engine optimization can be the key to bringing qualified customers to your website and turning your pages into a source of new revenue. Why settle for a top search ranking when you could strangle your competitors before they ever get a chance?
Take what you’ve learned in this short article and think about what you can do to dominate your search market. It’s easier than you might think, and probably more profitable, too!
If you need an experienced and trustworthy creative team of SEO experts to help you take your company’s website to the next level, it’s time to talk with the experienced web development and Internet marketing minds at MicroD. Just one phone call could change your business forever, so schedule your first consultation today!