Writing by Nick Stamoulis in Search Engines
When people are looking for information today they typically turn to their favorite search engine, which is most likely Google. Not only do you want your business to appear within search results, but ideally you want your business to appear multiple times on a SERP (search engine results page). This is especially true for branded search. If the only thing that comes up for your brand is your website, that means that there is still a lot of SERP space that is showing up and may even include some of your competitors. It’s important to try and stake claim to as much SERP real estate as possible, to ensure that someone will click on a page that is about your business and not someone else’s.
Here are 4 ways to improve your search engine visibility:
Claim local business profiles
There are so many places online beyond your website that you can list information about your business and many of them are free. It’s always smart to begin with local business listings, regardless of whether or not you only cater to a local audience. The most important places to get listed are with the search engines on Google+ Local, Bing Local, and Yahoo! Local. Next, focus on the smaller local business sites like MerchantCircle, Yelp, Local.com, and Yp.com. This is really only a small fraction of the number of local directories that exist. Activating a listing on each of these sites improves your local search presence but also helps you dominate the SERP for branded keywords. Be sure to include as much information as possible on each site, since you never know which site a potential client or customer could find you on.
Create and optimize social profiles
Social networking sites are very trusted by Google, specifically Google+. Creating social networking profiles on the big sites like Google+, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn means that those are four more SERP listings that point to your business and ultimately back to your website. Be sure to completely fill out every profile with important information about your business. Of course, the most valuable business social networking pages are the ones that are active. We’ll save that rant for a different post but if you aren’t active in social media, you should be.
Add a blog to your site
Remember, the search engines rank individual pages on the SERP, not websites as a whole. Each new page that you create is another opportunity to appear within a search result. A blog is a great place to go after non branded long tail keywords. Most likely you weren’t able to properly target every relevant keyword on the product or service pages of your site, so a blog is a great place to go after them.
Create off site content
In order to succeed with SEO you need to build links and share content such as webinars, white papers, guest blog posts, articles, and infographics on other properties across the web. By placing content on trusted websites, it improves the chances that it will be found and also helps to boost the credibility of your own site.