Every business is concerned with SEO.  Any why shouldn’t they be?  Where you rank on search engines can determine how well your business succeeds.  Large companies can’t help but to invest a lot of money into SEO because they can’t afford to let their competitors get an edge.  But there are a lot of small companies that don’t have this luxury and need to maximize their marketing dollar.  The question is–should you invest in SEO or should this money be invested elsewhere?

The good news is that Google is getting better at rewarding worthy businesses.  While SEO companies previously attempted to trick the system with back links and redirects, this has become obsolete.  Do you think Google is not aware that these SEO companies are trying to cheat the system?  Of course, they realize it.  Do you think SEO companies are smarter than Google?  Of course not.

Google’s main objective is to show the most relevant information to their users.  What websites show higher?  If you and your competitors are optimized the same and have the same keywords, the biggest factor for ranking will be clicks to your site.  It would make sense that if someone searches for “rubber bands”, the site with the most visits that include these keywords will appear highest.  The reason being that if you have the most hits to your site, you’re probably also the leader in the industry.  The question is, how does one get more clicks than their competitors?

One of the quickest ways to get clicks to your site is doing a PPC/SEM campaign.  This means putting paid advertisements on search engines.  My thinking is that If you’re going to spend money getting your company noticed on the web, why put it towards SEO hoping that you’ll be on the first couple pages when a PPC campaign can guarantee you’re on the first page?  You also don’t need a huge budget to get started.  You can start with as little as one dollar a day.  You also get to choose keywords that target your exact audience.  If your product is rubber bands, you don’t want to be mixed in with rock bands.  You’ll only be shown when someone searches for your exact keywords.  The best part is that you only get charged when someone clicks on your ad.  You can try setting up the account yourself, but the most efficient way to use Adwords is finding a trained professional or agency that knows how the system works and maximizes results.

Another large factor that determines rank is how easily Google can find keywords on your site.  Are they included in the page tabs and meta tags?  Are keywords deep down in your site or at the top of your page?  Are they included on images?  And most importantly, is your website mobile friendly?   It’s hard to believe that there are some companies that still don’t have a mobile/responsive site.  These businesses will slowly fall in search rankings.  Why?  Like I mentioned before, Google’s objective is to show the most relevant informative to searches.  Since many people use their mobile devices for finding information, they give a lower credence to non-mobile sites since it’s harder to view content.  Because of this, Google will rank sites higher that are easy to navigate and display information clearly.  What’s the message?  Get your website mobile!

Google also gives higher rankings for websites that make consistent changes.  If you don’t pay attention to your website and only make edits every six or twelve months, why should Google pay attention to your site either?  On the other hand, if you make weekly changes, Google will think there’s a lot of activity on your website and you’re very busy in your industry.  Some people think that making blog posts will help, but what Google really likes are changes to the Home page since they know this is bigger news that just mentioned something deep down in your site.  Even making a minor change like one word to the home page can make a difference.

Add a credible link to your website and watch your rankings shoot up.  Whether it be a media company or university, Google will think if you’re connected to an important website, you must be a player in the industry.

For small businesses just starting out, make sure you’re signed up for Google My Business.  Google wants to find your business.  That’s why they set up this system so you could list your business with them so it’s easier to find you.  The best part is that it’s free.  Just go to Google.com/Business and fill out the requested information.

These are other additions that can be made to your website that will get you higher up on search engines.  They key is reaching out to a specialist like Part Three to help.   You would be surprised on how a few small changes can help.   If you would like to know more, contact us at: partthree.com/contact