This Week's Question: My customers can't find my business when they search on Google. What can I do about that?
My customers can't find my business when they search on Google. What can I do about that?
Everyone wants to rank on the top of Google, but SEO marketing is complicated. Google has over 200 ranking factors, it can be hard to know what you're doing wrong. You have to diagnose the problem before you can fix it. If your business isn't showing up on the first page of Google and you want to learn more about it, keep watching!
Hi, I'm Tom Malesic, founder and President, of EZMarketing, a digital marketing agency in Lancaster, PA, and you're watching Ask EZ. This is where small business owners go to get real answers to their marketing questions.
two types of search terms
There are two types of search terms that you want to focus on. Branded search terms, which are the name of your business. So, EZMarketing, are we coming up for that. And then non-branded search terms, a keyword related to your business, like website design company.
When it comes to branded search, you should absolutely come up on the first page of Google for your name. If you're not showing up for your name, you're likely facing one of two issues.
- First, your site might not be indexed by Google. And a way to find out if it is or it isn't is, go to Google and type in site, colon, your web address.com. That will show you a list of all the pages in your website, and if that list appears your site is absolutely indexed.
- Second, you might have a manual penalty against your site. This is fairly rare and we really only see it with sites that did very aggressive spammy search engine marketing tactics in the past.
Most small businesses have issues with non-branded search, so in other words, you just don't rank for the important keywords that you want to be found under. This is where search engine optimization really comes into play.
Reasons You're Not Ranking on Google
To diagnose the problem of what's going wrong with your website, here are my top reasons that your website might not be ranking well.
Your website design is bad
Number one, your website design is really bad. And by really bad what I mean is that it loads slow, it's hard to use, it's not mobile-friendly, and when people get there they leave right away. These are all signals to Google that your website isn't worthy of being on the first page.
Not enough content
Next, your website just doesn't have enough content on it. It's really hard to convince Google that you have good answers to people's questions when you hardly have any words on the page.
On average, the website that ranks number one on Google for search terms has over two thousand words on that page. If your page only has 200 words on it it's going to be really hard to get that page ranked.
Next, take a look at low-quality content. So it's not just about having a lot of words on the page, you want to have the right words on the page. So those words have to be relevant to the keywords that you're trying to rank for.
Remember, make it readable, no one wants to read paragraph, paragraph, paragraph of text. Use bullet points and headings to break up the copy so that it makes sense for your user.
One of the biggest ranking factors that small businesses struggle with is backlinks. If you don't have other websites that link to your website, Google doesn't think that you're important. A backlink is like a vote, and if Google thinks that you have lots of important votes to your website they're going to rank you higher in the search results.
You're not optimized for local search
If you're a local business we want to make sure that you come up in the local search results and this is your Google My Business listing. So please make sure that all the information is filled out in detail.
You also want to make sure that you get listed in local business directories. The goal is we want your name, address, and phone number to be consistent across all these directories, so Google knows that you are who you say you are.
And finally, you might be having difficulty ranking because there's just too much competition for that keyword. For example, if you want to place on running shoes, it's going to be very difficult to beat Zappos, Amazon, and Nike. Versus if you use a more specific keyword like long- distance trail running shoes, you might have more success ranking for that than for a shorter, more competitive keyword phrase.
Here's your homework:
I want you to go to Google, type in the name of your business, if you don't come up in that top section, you've got a problem we need to fix that.
Next, I want you to make a list of your top five keyword phrases that you want to place on Google. Go ahead, do a search, where do you rank? If you don't show up for those top five, you're probably going to want to invest in some SEO services to fix that problem.
As a special thank you for watching this video the whole way to the end, right below I have a link and you can download our free SEO checklist that you can go through item-by-item, and try to figure out exactly what you need to fix with your website design to rank on the first page of Google.
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