Are you invisible in google?

Are you invisible in google?

I get asked all the time … how does a website move higher in google and show on page 1 of the results?

Google says it’s mission is   “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”

To fulfill that mission, Google needs data to decide what is “useful” in order to provide the best results for a given search query.  
Citations and backlinks
How does google know they are providing the best “useful” results?

Google tracks everything.  Two of those items are,  what DOES get clicked in the search results and what DOESN’T get clicked.

Websites that DO get the clicks, get marked as a good result and move higher in future searches.  As long as the clicks continue to happen, that website continues to climb higher. Leading to the best possible spots to get more clicks.

Yes – it’s like a popularity contest.  Clicks equate to votes. But it’s much more involved than just counting clicks.

Once someone arrives on your website, Google is still watching.   A key factor is –  how long did they stay on your website?

The assumption is, the longer amount of time a person spends on your site, the more valuable it is.  Preferably, the page they landed on leads them to other pages on your website and they could stay longer.  Videos help with people staying longer.

The reverse situation is this. A person could land on a page and within a few seconds leave your site altogether, back to google looking at other results.  Google calculates this as your bounce rate, because they bounced off your website really quickly.   Your bounce rate is google’s signal that says your website was a poor result, and google moves your site lower in future results.

This zigzag of movement with your website in the results is normal, and it’s google’s method to continue repositioning all websites to provide the best search results.

This is a very simplistic view of it, as there are over 200 different factors that google looks at, where clicks and bounce rate are just 2 of them.  But they are high on the list.

Do you know your websites bounce rate and clicks?  Google wants you to know. In fact, Google is ready to share its data with you … if you ask.  How?  By signing up for a free Google Analytics account.

Many of the sites I work on, are already using Google Analytics. But when I ask those people about their clicks and bounce rate, they have no idea. Some don’t know where to look. While others don’t have the time to go look.

Did you know Google can email you your website numbers?  Check out my info on Google Analytics reports.

A website’s ranking position, on page 1 in the search results, is vital to get more phone calls, more appointments or more traffic. But there are only 10 exclusive spots on page 1. If you aren’t already there, then more is needed to help your website climb up there.

More of what?  I mentioned above that Google looks at more than 200 factors when deciding which websites gets those 10 spots on page 1. Everyone wants to be there – but Google’s algorithm is what chooses the lucky 10.

Would you like to see the full list of 200+ factors? Well – Google doesn’t want to share what those are. It’s their “proprietary information”. However, there are several good articles that present collected data to produce what they “think” is Google’s factors. Google is constantly tweeking and adjusting their algorithm daily. So keep in mind that what worked yesterday may not work today.

What your website needs is to be better with these 200 factors. First we need to look  INSIDE your website.  This is commonly called ON PAGE Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  I explain a few of the top ones here.

Ranking in Google is a whole lot more than just the ON PAGE SEO that I mentioned above.  Sure .. more words help. But there is still more that you need.

These are the other important factors you need. They are OUTSIDE your website. Commonly called “OFF PAGE” Search Engine Optimization (SEO).  This is where things are happening on other websites.

To help move your Website higher in Google’s search results, you need…
• Brand Mentions
• Social Media Signals
• Local Listings (Citations) such as Yelp
• Reviews on public sites: Google Maps, Yelp and more
• Backlinks – links on other websites that point to your website
• Monitoring to Remove Links with No Value

Brand Mentions

A “Brand Mention” isn’t a link. Instead someone writes an article, blog post or share on social media about a particular brand. Just as with speaking with someone you might say … ‘I got my new TV on Amazon’. Even though I have typed this here, you’ll notice I didn’t make the word amazon a link. You can’t click it. But Google recognizes the brand .. Amazon. And behind the scenes at google, it counts as a ranking factor, like hot air, to help you inch higher.

In your case you need YOUR brand mentioned. The most common place is in social media.

Social Media Signals

Google can see some of what’s shared on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Pinterest. When a page on your website is shared, Google counts that as a social signal. Don’t confuse this with sharing just anything on social media. The PAGE (the url) needs to be shared. Here is an example on Facebook. Facebook used the page name to retrieve a picture from that page as well as the some info from the page.

Local Listings (Citations)

A citation is a page or directory that lists your business name, business address, and phone number. Also called NAP. In most cases, directories will include a place for your Website too.

Yelp.com is a really great example of a Citation. When you setup a free listing on Yelp, you provide your NAP and website. Google will see it and count it as a citation. But, for citations to be counted, your NAP must match what’s on your website.

These work really great for your website as well as your map listing in google.  Think of each Citation as a VOTE for your company.

Reviews

You should already be asking every client for a review of your products or services. But WHERE are you asking people to leave them? A hand written note or postcard doesn’t help you in the search results. Yes, those would be great to show on your website. But to get you real help in the search results, they need to be done by that real person on a public site. The top 2 places are your Google Map listing (also called google my business) and on Yelp.com. There are several other sites too. It’s always good to spread your reviews around. But these are the very first places to start if you have zero reviews.

Backlinks

These are links on other websites that point to a page on your website. A page with a lot of backlinks tends to rank higher with all major search engines, including Google.

Notice that I said “page on your website” and not just website. Google doesn’t rank domain names. It ranks pages. So ranking cnn.com is really ranking the home page of cnn.com/index.html. So for your website, backlinks need to point to the specific pages you want found in Google. That is not always your home page.

Monitoring to Remove Links with No Value

Not all website links are created equal. A good example is a celebrity recommendation. Lets say Jim Parsons of the Big Bang Theory TV show talked about you or your company. And then maybe the mayor of your city talked about you or your company. One of them has larger authority and a larger number of trusted followers.

It works the same with websites. Some have a higher authority and trust than other websites. Therefore you don’t want low authority websites to drag you down. They need to be identified and removed.

Search results is like a hot air balloon Moving up higher in Google’s search results is like a hot air balloon. It takes extra hot air to get the balloon off the ground. Then continued bursts of hot air to keep it up there. Stop the hot air and the balloon falls lower, back to the ground.

Your website’s position in the search results operates EXACTLY the same way.  Stop working on your SEO and other websites will start climbing higher above you.  SEO is an ongoing activity if you truly want to keep your website rising higher and maintain your highest position.

I am available to help, if you don’t want to tackle this yourself.

What Are You Doing to Improve Your Brand’s Recognition?

What Are You Doing to Improve Your Brand’s Recognition?

What Are You Doing to Improve Your Brand's Recognition

Brand recognition is one of the most important marketing strategies you can undertake. Brand recognition is worth more than product quality in terms of your marketing ROI and profit margin. What are you doing to improve your brand’s recognition? Let’s take a look at some of the best strategies.

Establish Yourself as an Expert

If you are the premier intellectual talent in your industry, people will trip over themselves to buy from you. You can do this by becoming a staple in your industry’s blogosphere, and you can also write how to e-books to give away as loss leaders. Do not worry about giving away too much information. People do not want to take on solutions themselves – they simply want to know that you are actually an expert before they give their money to your company. Having a clean, well-presented website can go a long way in making yourself look like an expert to your audience.

Be Everywhere

There is a reason that companies spend so much time on search engine optimization. The more visible your company is, the more people trust you. The more people trust you, the more that you can charge for your branded items. Search engine optimization gets you in front of a potential audience of millions. These are people who would otherwise not see you, because you would not have the ability to market to them through traditional means of advertising.

Get Involved in Your Community

One of the best ways that you can improve your brand recognition is to start with your local community. If your brand gets involved with local charity events and business initiatives, you will find that people will spread the word about you in a positive way. If there are any business associations that you can join in the local area, do so. Participate in the meetings and expand your brand by going to local and regional business conventions.

The tactics above are only a few of the ways in which you can improve your brand recognition. You may be doing some of them already, and others you may not be participating in. Brand recognition involves a holistic strategy, so make sure that you are involved in as many of the above activities as possible. You should also try to increase your product quality so that as you draw people in, you do not turn them away with the actual performance of your solutions. Keep all of this in mind, and you will certainly find improved profit margins in your future.

Do Independent Distributors Need Websites?

Do Independent Distributors Need Websites?

Short answer? Yes!

Multilevel marketers start with a business goal in mind. Many start out by leveraging social media to drive sales. They continue with a website to help them achieve their goal of success. Independent sellers also have websites to promote products for MLM brands such as doTERRA, Amway, Mary Kay, and Cutco. Some sellers succeed without websites, while others cannot succeed without them. Here are several reasons why it may be important to sell on your own site.

 

Existing Blog

If you already have your own blog, consider building your own website. A blog that is taking in thousands of viewers every month is the ideal place to find customers. Within the blog’s content, embed links that go straight to your website’s converting pages where many of your readers could turn into customers overnight. According to research by Moz, a small number of outbound links to expert sites may also help to boost your website’s search rankings, as well.

 

Unique Marketing

As an independent distributor, you are selling the same products as hundreds or thousands of other people. You will succeed more by running a unique marketing campaign, so your site cannot look and function just like any other one. In addition to interesting templates, find unique selling approaches.

A popular way to get people’s attention is to make videos that are featured on Youtube. Blogging and video marketing appeal to audiences of all ages. The same principle is true for podcasting. It’s also important to market and sell to targeted audiences instead of random consumers. Talk to an experienced SEO expert about boosting web traffic from these channels to your landing pages.

 

Obsolete Door-to-Door Selling

Door-to-door selling is an increasingly frowned-upon strategy, with a decreasing ROI. In general, there are few places to sell products apart from online. Many businesses are not the right environments to make solicitations. Sending direct mail is a method that is too expensive for many independent distributors. Most of them succeed by owning their own business or running their own blog or website.

Most of all, direct selling is becoming less popular and quickly being replaced by online selling. There are more customers to find online and more ways to spread information. Customers feel less pressured, while the sellers feel safer and more comfortable working on their computers.

 

In the past, independent sellers went door to door to find interested buyers. Nowadays, more people are going online to sell; however, millions of other people are doing the same thing. It’s absolutely vital that you rank high in search engine results to remain competitive. Many websites are earning enough for sellers to make large commissions every month. With enough research and dedication to the craft, any independent seller can succeed with a website.

Top 5 SEO Items for 2017

Top 5 SEO Items for 2017

Help your website rank better in Google

 

NOTE: While I wrote this in early 2017, it’s still valid for 2019

A website’s ranking position on page 1 in the search results is vital to get more phone calls or more appointments.  But there are only 10 exclusive spots on page 1.  If you aren’t there already, then there is more to do to help your website.  Here are 5 items to look at with your website, to get you moving higher.

You may not be aware, but Google looks at more than 200 factors when deciding which websites gets those 10 spots on page 1.  Everyone wants to be there – but Google’s algorithm is what chooses the lucky 10.

Would you like to see the full list of 200+ factors?  Well – Google doesn’t want to share what those are.  It’s their ‘proprietary information’.  However, there are several good articles that have collected data to produce what they “think” is Google’s factors.  Google is constantly tweeking and adjusting their algorithm daily.  So keep in mind that what worked yesterday may not work today.

Ranking in Google is about SO MUCH MORE than just doing these 5 items.  But these are where you need to start, to help make some movement of your website’s ranking position.   All 5 are important.  Here they are…

1) The Title tag

2) Your website is Mobile Friendly

3) Speed of your website

4) More words – Google is hungry

5) Make your pages sticky

1          The Title Tag <title>

Every Page in your website needs a title tag.  No matter what you use to create your website, there is a place to edit the title tag; WordPress, Drupal, Magento, WIx, Weebly, Shopify – so many to choose from.  And you can just use a plain old html editor too.

Whatever it is you are using, you can look at the html code and see the title tag.  It’s displayed as:

<title>your title goes here</title>

The purpose of the title tag is to be an accurate and concise description of that page’s content. This is important to both the user’s experience and for search engine optimization.

If you keep your titles under 55 total characters, you can expect at least 95% of your titles to display properly.

Your title (what you have placed within the title tag <title> … </title>) shows in 2 places.

  1. At the very top of the browser, usually as the label for the tab…
  2. In the search results. The BLUE is the title tag …

Your title tag for each page should be unique.  That way Google understands which page it should present for that keyword.  Preferably it starts with your primary keyword phrase.  And may continue with a secondary keyword phrase.  Finish up with a brand, phone number, or geographic location.

In the above real page, General Liability insurance is the primary keyword phrase.

2        Your website is mobile friendly

More people are reading news, email, shopping, and visiting websites on their smartphones every day. So it’s important to ensure that your website is searchable in Google Mobile.

Google has reported that more searches come from mobile devices now, than desktop PCs.  That means your website needs to be what google calls “Mobile Friendly”.

To be mobile friendly, means a couple things –

  1. Buttons are big enough to be touched. Not just a bunch of links within the content.
  2. The font size of your content is readable and a visitor wouldn’t need to zoom in to enlarge it.

Google likes that a website is responsive. Meaning that a page can automatically reformat it’s layout to fit any size screen. Yes that means it may look different on a phone vs a desktop.  But it could also look different in landscape vs portrait views depending on how you hold your phone.

Google provides an easy mobile friendly test page.  Just go to:

https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/mobile-friendly/

Put your website domain in the box and click ANALYZE

You’ll get back either a confirmation or failure.  If you fail this test, Google will tag your domain in it’s database.  And purposely, drop your ranking position so other mobile friendly websites can be positioned before yours.   Make sure you see .. Awesome! This page is mobile-friendly to move higher in google.

3        Speed of your website

Google tracks how long it takes to display your website.  Google wants people to be happy with the website results it provides.  That includes giving preference to sites that are FAST.

You can check your speed here:

https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/

Put your website domain in the box and click ANALYZE

You will get back 2 scores.  One tab shows your mobile score and the other shows your desktop score.

 

Pay attention to the color coding.  Fix the RED issues right away.  You will see above that Google tells you what is needed to fix in order to improve your score.  Don’t stop with just the red ones.  Fix the orange ones too.   Then rerun the test to see your updated scores.

4        More Words – Google is hungry

When Google builds an index from the words on your website, ALL those words can be a source of keywords to help your website show in the search results.

Consider a page with 100 versus 500 words.  Your primary keyword phrase needs to be in the body of the page.  And it helps to repeat that keyword phrase and include some synonyms.  Google understands grammar and language very well now.  Do you think a 100 word page would be better at providing useful information, with keywords included, and without sounding “stuffed” with keywords?  Probably not.  A 500 word page would be better.

SEO is a process of doing something better than your competition. These days though, that drive to “one up” someone else has increased the number of words on a page.  Right now you want  between 1,000 to 1,500 words on your pages, to perform better in Google’s search results.

Think about it.  If others have 500 to 800 words, you need to do more.  That’s why I say – Google is hungry.  Get more of your content into google’s index.  Have more chances to work in your primary keywords, secondary keywords and synonyms.

Google wants to provide GREAT content to users.  It can be your website if you feed Google with what people want.    Don’t make a monstrous long block of text.  Mix in some subheadings, bullet points and images throughout the page to make it easy for readers to more quickly scan and digest it.

Longer articles will continue to perform better in search results because there are more words and images to help rank that page.

How many words do you have on your page?  You can use this website to find out:

Bulk Web page Word Count checker

5        Make your pages sticky

I don’t mean that your computer or phone is sticky to the touch.  Instead you want people to stay on your website longer.  Make them “stick around”.

Google’s mission statement is “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.”   (http://www.google.com/about/company/)

To fulfill this mission, Google needs to index all the words on your website and display USEFUL content.  Learn more here -> https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/70897?hl=en

Content that is “useful” means it’s High Quality and that people WANT it.  If it’s not wanted – it’s not useful.  Pretty black and white.

So how does Google decide if it’s wanted?   By the amount of time the person stays on your website.  Google is always watching and collecting data.  It collects ..  what was searched for, what results were returned, which ones were clicked on, and finally HOW LONG did the visitor “stick around” on that website.

Your Google Analytics data gives you this information.  You want to look at your Bounce Rate.

Above, this example shows the bounce rate is 65.62% on average for the entire website.  That is to high.  A bounce happens when a user visits only one page on your site and then immediately leaves to visit another site altogether, i.e., “bouncing” off your site. This typically happens when a visitor isn’t finding the information or products he or she had hoped for. It can also be an indication of a poor landing page that lacks a clear call to action.   The lower the bounce rate the better, preferably under 40%.   Higher, like this example, tells Google this page and potentially this site is not “useful”.  Only useful sites make to one of the 10 exclusive spots on page 1.

If you don’t look at your Analytics data from google – you won’t know if this is an issue for you.

What can you do to keep people on your page longer?  Add a Video.

Videos are a great way of keeping your website visitors engaged and entertained.   The longer they stay and watch, the better it helps your bounce rate.  You could have a video on every page if you want.  Like content – it needs to be something people WANT to watch.

That’s my list of 5 areas you can work on to help improve the ranking of your website.  Don’t stop with only these 5.  You are on your way to find more that you can do to your website.

Remember – Google rewards you with higher rankings when your website follows Google’s recommendations.  Do you even know if Google is working 24/7 right now to bring you more Leads or more phone calls?  Or are you invisible on Google?

Google has free tools so you can find out where your Website currently ranks for keyword phrases people are using.  Now, while these tools are free, I find I don’t even go look at my own numbers.  I get busy – as I’m sure you do.  So I setup several reports that are emailed to me weekly.  That way I’m sure to stay on top of my numbers.    You can too.

3 ways Google+ can help you rank higher in Google

We all want to be on page 1 of Google, but sometimes there is just to much competition for some keywords.  And it seems impossible to get on Page 1 of Google.

Google+ can help.  How?

You and your other connections in your Google+ circles can influence what Google returns in the search results.  Think of it like being in a special club, where all the members have special privileges.   In the Google+ club (your Circles), your websites that you have listed in your profile and business page, get priority when one of your Circle members does a Google search.

So you and all your Circle connections can influence what Google shows as search results.  That may be enough to get you on page 1 on Google.

Here is an interesting article showing the details on 3 ways Google+ can help your business with ranking.

Continue to grow the size of your Circles, so all your connections can see your Website prominently in Google search results.

 

Are new Customers calling you?

If you are on page 1 of Google, yes, new Customers will find you and you should get some calls.

However, if you are in the top 5, on page 1, then you are getting MOST of the calls.  Just like the alphabetical listing in the yellow pages, the top listing on the first page gets the most calls. It’s the same with Google, Bing, and Yahoo.   The top spot gets the most and the bottom spot gets the least.

So where are you ranking?  I have a new FREE ranking tool for you to try.  All you need is your business phone number.

A reverse lookup will happen to find your keywords.  Then you will see a report on how you are doing.

Page 1 of Google = Profitable Visibility.

If you find you don’t like your ranking, and someone else is getting all the calls, then go back and start with my previous tip to get listed.

Is your Business Invisible?

Have you tried to search for your business name in Google? It’s best to put your business name in quotes when searching, to help weed out other variations.

How many results did google show? Was it at least 1000? If you are under 1000, you are invisible.

How about your contact info? It’s vital to have your business name, address, phone on other Directory sites. And it needs to be exactly like what you have on your website. For example, if you have STE for the word Suite on your website, all other sites and directories should also have STE.

For the next test. How many listings can you find with your business name and phone number?

Simply search for the last 7 digits of your phone number, as it appears on your website. And include your business name. Did Google find at least 500 results?

Here is an example. As I write this I have a friend who does an amazing job with countertops. If I search for “elegant finishes” 326-6004

Google is only finding 33 results. His business is invisible.

So what can you do to get your info “out there”, so potential Customers can find you?

1) Create a free Business Listing in Google Places.  Click on GET STARTED under “Get your Business Found on Google”. Keep filling in all the fields to provide all your information.

2) Easily get 100+ websites and directories at Univeral Business Listing.
You can see a current list where UBL will distribute your info at https://www.ubl.org/Distribution_List.aspx
Click on PACKAGES to purchase the plan you want. UBL charges you annually. Considering how much time it takes to get updated on 100 individual sites, the price for UBL is well worth it. Its a huge time saver. Enter your info once and UBL will add it to all the sites.

3) Here are some addtional websites to look at. Some of these may work for your business. If so, you can create an account or profile to list your Business.
http://biznik.com
http://bx.businessweek.com
http://dmoz.org
http://econnect.entrepreneur.com
http://local.botw.org
http://sta.rtup.biz
http://www.Answers.com
http://www.bizsugar.com
http://www.eventful.com
http://www.flickr.com
http://www.joeant.com
http://www.meetup.com
http://www.partnerup.com/default.aspx
http://www.rateitall.com/promote
http://www.startupnation.com
http://www.Twitter.com
http://www.webdirectory.com
http://www.webring.com
http://www.wepapers.com
http://www.wikipedia.org

4) Lastly, look up your competition the same way. What other websites are they using, that you have’t used yet for your Business. Many occupations have special or niche directories that you can use. You can find them easier by looking at your competitors to see where they are listed.

Don’t think you are done when Google shows you reached 500. The steps above are to help get you started. This is just the begining for promoting your business and website. You want to continuously be on the lookout for other places to list your business.

Keywords in Google search results

Google has enhanced their display of search results. Maybe you noticed?

If you use your mouse and hover on top of a website in the Google search results a double arrow >> is displayed.

Move your mouse to hover on the >> and small version of the webpage is displayed along the right edge. In addition, Google will take a snippet from the page and display in a black box. Notice that the words you are searching for determines the snippet that Google displays. You’ll also see that Google notated, with a red box, where it pulled the snippet.

How can you use this feature to your advantage?

Make sure your content, meaning your web pages and blog posts contain keywords that people will use to find your page or blog.

As always, fresh and unique content is king. Make sure you have the right keywords in it too. And you will be rewarded with a higher position in the search results.

Here is an example. Search for…
quickbooks training bookkeeping phoenix

On the first page of the search results, I hover on the818solution.com.  And then hover on the >> next to it.   You will see a mini webpage like this with the search words in the snippet, and notated in the red box. 

Try it yourself, on your own website.  Add in keywords where necessary to improve your search results positioning and help Google display your snippets.

 

Got a special event coming up?

Use Eventbright.com.   When you setup your event, Eventbright helps to spread the word.  Your event details are shared with the search engines.  And its made available to some other event sites, such as eventful.com.

While it is vital to spread the word on your event to maximize attendance, Eventbright offers several other benefits too….

– Eventbrite has a good calendar widget to include on your website.  That way your website visitors can see your upcoming events.

– Easily offer online registration to your event and sell tickets online.

– You get automatic name badges and check-in lists.

– Free events are free on Eventbright.  Are you collecting money for your event?  Then there is a small transaction fee for each ticket sold.  Setup is free.  No monthly fees.

– As part of setting up your event, you supply your Website.  That means your Event  helps your ranking in the search engines.  The more events you have, the more your ranking improves.

– Events can be shared on Social Media.

You can join Eventbright for free.  Help people find your event and your website.

Keywords in website folders and filenames

This tip goes hand in hand with the prior tip.  Another popular way to improve your ranking in Search Engines is to use keywords as your page name, the name of your picture file, and even folder names.

For example…
Instead of pic4532.jpg as your countertop picture, use Countertop.jpg

Instead of using location.html as your page name, use Peoria.html or whatever city your office is in.

Instead of ‘category’ or ‘folder02’ as folder names, use a keyword such as ‘backpain’ or ‘waterdamage’.  Use whatever keywords are appropriate for your site.

This is a great way to have the Search Engines index your site with more keywords.

You can see others using this.  Go to google.com.  Search for back pain.
You’ll see 6 of the search results showup because they had backpain as a folder name.

A very simple technique, and free.

Enjoy.