Your company has just created a brand new website with all the bells and whistles, and everyone is very excited about the launch. After all the finishing touches are made and the site is posted live for the world to see, you conduct a quick search for your site on Google.
Let's try typing in my main service in here in my hometown location... nothing? How about we try another service... nothing?? I'll definitely show up for my name... NOTHING???
Why is my website not showing up on Google?
Having a website that is not appearing on search engines (such as Google) is a common problem that companies face. Obviously, companies want to strive to not only be seen, but to be seen on the first page, let alone the first few results.
To get to the root of the problem, it is important to understand how the search engines choose which pages it ranks for certain keyword searches. Google uses a formula, or algorithm, that generates their search engine page results (SERPs) based on the value they have given of each page on the internet that they have read or indexed. This algorithm is the equivalent to the Coca-Cola recipe and is very top secret to prevent abuse and provide the best results to searching consumers for the keywords they enter. So it makes sense to focus on constructing the pages of your website to generate the most value in the eyes of these search engine algorithms resulting in an optimal page rank. This process is commonly referred to search engine optimization or SEO.
Search Engine Optimization
Search engine optimization is an important ongoing process that involves research, enhancement of page code, inbound links (backlinks) and content creation to build credibility with the search engines. I stress the word ongoing as this is a process that does require time and discipline. Search engines are a very dynamic environment requiring continuous monitoring and activity in order to establish and maintain optimal page rank for targeted search terms. Think of it link a weight loss program. It takes maximum effort to achieve a target weight loss goal. Once you get to your ideal weight, you must continue a modified exercise and diet program in order to maintain your results.
Determining your target keywords is the first step in the process. You need to understand what keywords searching consumers are typing in the search engines to find your products and services. There are many different tools available to help you identify a target keyword list that will serve as the foundation of your SEO strategy. Google Adwords provides a free tool that you can use to help you conduct your research.
2. Code Enhancement (On Page Optimization)
Now that you have a list of targeted keywords that you want our website to rank well for on the search engines, it is time to enhance the code of each page of your website. This helps the search engines understand what each page of your website is about. Give each page of your website unique and (ideally) keyword rich meta data and content that is fitting to the premise of the page. All too often, website pages lack proper meta data or have the same title, description and keywords on each page. Make each page of your website a potential salesperson for your company.
3. Creating Inbound Links (Backlinks)
The search engines like to see external websites linking to your website. Building quality backlinks to your website will let the search engines know that other people find value in the content of your website. These inbound links can be implemented from a variety of sources such as industry blogs, directory sites, through press releases, and social media platforms. While it does take time and effort to create these quality backlinks, the value they will provide to your SEO strategy will pay ongoing dividends.
4. Content Creation
We've all heard the phrase "Content is King". This holds particularly true in search engine optimization. Continuous creation of fresh and relevant content on your website is essential to your SEO success. While it is important to keep the general content of your website up to date, it is impractical to keep rewriting your company history or frequently asked questions on your website. A company blog is one of the best tools to integrate into your SEO strategy to inject fresh content into your website while also providing value to your website visitors.
Show Up to Show Up
Like every other aspect of your business, you get out of it what you put into it. Planning and implementing your SEO strategy will help you increase the exposure of your website on the search engines and position your business in front of searching consumers looking for your products and services on the search engines. Make search engine optimization an important component of your ongoing marketing strategy.