Getting found on Google is easy… said nobody. Ever.
Driving traffic to websites can be a long and challenging process, especially if you choose to grow your site organically. Many find their sites competing with multinationals, and in saturated markets it’s no wonder that you’re struggling for visibility.
But what exactly can you do? There’s no special formula or shortcut to achieve results.. it requires research, planning and lots of work!
The First Step…
You have to start somewhere, and research is where it’s at. One of the most basic exercises is to explore your site from a user’s perspective. Ask yourself questions as you browse, such as:
- Is it immediately clear what you do?
- Is your site eye-catching and aesthetically-pleasing?
- Are your pages quick to load? (Tip: Google’s PageSpeed Insights can measure this)
- Does your content make sense to the consumer, and is it easy to read?
- If you sell products, are they priced competitively?
- Are there bold call-to-actions placed on every page?
- Do the basic functions of the site work correctly, such as the checkout process? Can these be streamlined for a better user experience?
Before you dive into rankings and visibility, you should really take a close look at all of these areas. If users aren’t impressed with the quality, pricing and functionality of your site then you’re unlikely to see many conversions, regardless of any other work that you do.
If you don’t already have Google Analytics for your site, then we can’t recommend it enough. This is an essential free tool for digital marketers and website owners alike, and it can provide you with a much deeper insight into user experience. Some key areas to look at are:
- Bounce rate– the lower your overall bounce rate percentage the better. This means that customers are interacting with more pages on your site.
- Page views/ unique page views– looking at these statistics can help you to identify which are you “hero” pages. These are the most commonly visited locations on your site. Comparing the amount of views each page has to its bounce rate is a great way to see if users are having a good experience when browsing your site. If one page has lots of views and a high bounce rate, try adding more informative content, imagery and internal links.
- Audience demographics- Google Analytics can also provide invaluable insights into your site visitors. Looking at factors such as age, gender and new/returning users can all help you to tailor your site to your target audience.
- Mobile- as many of you will know, smart phones are where it’s at. According to Google Insights, 40% of online transactions are done on mobile. Consumers are also 50% more likely to purchase something immediately using their smartphones than they were two years ago. This makes it more important than ever that your site provides the best possible mobile experience, and Google Analytics can segment data by device so you can see how you’re performing.
Whether your online or offline, knowing your business and your customers is vital to your success.
A huge part of understanding your customers is knowing exactly what they’re searching for. Your site pages and content should be structured around this. However, this is also where it starts to become more complex, and where having an expert can really come in handy.
How to Choose Your Keywords…
Although Google is becoming smarter, it is still important to let it know exactly what your page is about so that it can match it with the most relevant search results.
This is where keyword research comes in. Using tools such as Google’s Keyword Planner or the Keyword Explorer from Moz, you can identify which search queries are getting the most traffic. Try searching for your chosen terms yourself as well- if you see a lot of big brand names appearing then you should probably target something more niche.
Each page should be targeting different keywords, as this gives you opportunities to appear in more searches. It also stops your pages from competing with each other. Don’t rule out longer keywords with fewer searches- these are fantastic for blog posts.
Now for the fun stuff…
You’ve familiarised yourself with your website stats, you’ve fixed any technical issues and you’ve carried out your keyword research. So, what’s next?
To get found on Google, you need to start adding your keywords to your site. Prioritise the ones that mean the most to your business and that have the most potential in terms of traffic.
You should also include variations of your keywords and other closely-related topics on your pages. This will make your content seem natural to search engines, and it is also likely to provide a better experience for users.
If it’s appropriate, aim to write longer, more descriptive content. Have clear headings, and try and include your keywords in these where possible. Imagery is also essential, and according to research from blogpros, you should aim to include at least one picture for every 350 words.
Your chosen terms should fit seamlessly into your content, even if you have to rework it. They should always appear natural, otherwise Google might accuse you of “stuffing” them into your page and your rankings will suffer as a result.
Use advertising as a helping hand…
Online advertising can be a fast and effective way of getting found on Google and driving traffic to websites. It can be used to boost traffic and conversions, and it should run parallel to your organic efforts.
Unlike the other methods that I have described above, advertising does come at a cost. However, it can also show immediate results.
Google AdWords, Facebook and LinkedIn all offer incredibly detailed targeting options, so that you can get your product or service in front of the people that matter. Find out which type of paid digital marketing is best for your business here.
Want to know more?
If you’d like to learn more about how you can drive traffic to your site and get found on Google, then our expert team will be happy to help! Call us for a chat on 01423 701711 today.