By Maxym Martineau
Everyone wants to show up on the first page of the search engines. Top of mind is important – and while it’s not reasonable to promise that your business will skyrocket to the first spot on the list, there are a few important steps you can take to improve your search engine ranking.
Find the right words
Search engines like websites that are dynamic, which means your content needs to be rich in keywords so your pages are more appealing. On-page SEO (search engine optimization) is vital to increasing your ranking. First, do your research and find keywords that are relative to your business – use phrases or words that people commonly search for when shopping in your industry. Then, build your content around those words so they fit naturally and seamlessly into the text of your website.
A good way to start is to spend a few minutes writing down words that relate to your business. Imagine any phrase or word a potential visitor might use when browsing a search engine. Once you’ve done that, stop by Google’s free Keyword Planner. This is an awesome tool that tracks whether or not people are actually searching for the words and phrases you’ve created. The tool itself is initially part of Google AdWords, but feel free to use it to boost your on-page SEO.
Finally, write incredible web page content! Be sure to use the most relevant keywords and phrases, but don’t go overboard; you wouldn’t want to be a victim of “keyword stuffing,” which is a no-no for search engines. A good practice is to only use one keyword per every 100 words of content. If you stick to information-rich text, right around 300 to 1,000 words per page, you’ll make both the search engines and your visitors happy. Lastly, focus the most attention on your primary keyword or phrase – be sure to use it in the page’s headline, as well as five to 10 times in the content.
Keep up with your followers
I cannot stress enough how important it is to stay connected with your customers and prospects via social media. Social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter give you the perfect starting point to engage with your customers. Sharing is caring – and when customers care about your business, they’re quick to share all of your awesome deals, information and know-how to other visitors. Soon enough, they’ll be linking content and boosting your credibility with all of the search engines (which is awesome because over half of search engine ranking factors now involve social media).
As a rule of thumb, create shareable content. Nothing is better than your customers pushing your products for you. Keep up with the trends and be sure to add social widgets to your website so sharing is as easy a one, simple click.
Mark that map
When you’re plumbing breaks at two in the morning, you aren’t going to search for a plumber three hours away; you’re going to look within your city limits. The same rule applies for your own business – if you want people to find you, be sure you show up on your local maps! The good news is these days, there are plenty of ways to get your business listed in online maps and directories. One awesome way is to sign up for GoDaddy’s Get Found product, which comes with a Google My Business account if you don’t already have one.
And, now you’re off to the races. Now that you have the framework for getting your website discovered online, be sure to check out other resources like The Moz Blog and Search Engine Land to learn more ways to boost your rankings.
Maxym Martineau is a content writer for Professional Web Services at GoDaddy and a freelance writer based out of Arizona. She’s an avid reader with a love for social media and blogging. The world’s largest domain name registrar and Web hosting provider, GoDaddy gives small business owners the tools to name their idea, build a beautiful online presence, attract customers and manage their business. To get more tips for your small business, visit the GoDaddy Garage.