We all know that going digital can open us up to a whole new world, but many of us may not know exactly where to start.
SEO, metadata, PPC, Google Analytics, the list of technical jargon goes on and on. If you’re nowhere near a digital marketing expert then all of these terms may overwhelm you, or better yet mean nothing at all to you.
We’re now in the digital age of doing business so if you want to compete, gain a competitive edge or grow your business then you’ll need to jump onto the digital bandwagon. It’s not just a current trend, the stats tell us that it’s growing rapidly and it’s here to stay.
As of January 2019, 4.4 billion people were active internet users with 3.5 billion being social media users. Let those stats sink in.
Digital marketing, and social media in particular, has changed the way we do business drastically. Social media influencers are the new celebrity with the likes of YouTube, Instagram and Snap Chat, among other platforms, giving them the power to reach millions of people at the click of a button.
Companies like Yahoo, Google and Bing are the big players in the online search landscape. With earnings of $35+ billion in the first quarter for 2019, companies like Google are hugely powerful and will ultimately influence your success online.
Like most organisations, you’re most likely looking at new ways to bulk up that sales funnel, but you may be unsure how to fully capitalise on it from the digital side of things. Don’t fear, there are some simple things you can do including to submit your website to Google.
Here are 5 super easy ways to get your business listed on Google:
1. Register For Google My Business
First and foremost, you need to be in it to win it. Registering for Google My Business is the first step to your world domination.
Google My Business allows you to manage how your business appears on Google Search and Maps, including responding to customer reviews, adding product photos, getting search data and more. It gives you the platform to easily connect with customers and get results.
Making things easier for your customers to do business with you will translate into growth.
The only requirement for using Google My Business is that you can’t operate fully online, you must have some face-to-face interaction with your customers, even if you’re travelling to them.
To register you’ll need to use the Google Account that you want linked to your business; once you’re set up, you can see how your customers are connecting with your business.
You’ll have access to data about engagement rates including clicks, calls, bookings, follows etc. through Insights. This lets you better understand how customers are interacting with your business profile; it gives you the data you need to optimise your customer engagement for better results.
You can also encourage more engagement by communicating with your customers from the Customers tab, giving them reinforcement that they are valued by your business.
2. Create Google Search Console Account And Submit Sitemap
Google Search Console features tools and reports that help you measure your website’s search traffic and performance, fix any issues and help your site rank in Google Search results.
Getting your content on Google is the first piece of the puzzle.
To add your website to Google, you can submit sitemaps and individual URLs for crawling by Google. A sitemap is a visible, hierarchical list of pages of a website. They’re structured listings intended for web crawlers such as search engines like Google. A URL is a web address; it’s a reference to a web resource that specifies its location.
You can also review your index coverage to make sure that Google has the most up to date view of your site.
Search Analytics within Google Search Console lets you optimise your content based on which queries bring users to your site the most. You can analyse your website’s impressions, clicks and ranking position on Google Search to identify what’s working and what’s not, in real-time.
You’ll also get alerted on issues with your website that need fixing, get a better understanding on how Google Search sees your webpages through the URL Inspection tool, and optimise and enhance your site through things like mobile testing.
You don’t have to sign up for Google Search Console to be included in Google Search results, however it helps you better understand, and improve how Google views your site.
Knowledge is key when it comes to digital marketing, so gaining these insights will be invaluable to your business.
3. Create Business Listings Everywhere
In order to succeed digitally, you need to be committed to putting in the legwork. Adding your business to any type of listing gives your potential customers more avenues to find you.
The easier it is to find you, the more customers you’ll see coming through the door.
Today’s consumer doesn’t want to have to exert too much effort when they’re browsing for their next purchase. If your business is too hard to find then you’ll be added to the too hard basket category and soon replaced by the next best thing.
While this step may not get you that world domination, it’s an easy way to ensure that your business pops up in as many places as possible. The more visibility your business has, the more chance it’ll translate into sales.
Business directories can improve brand awareness, boost traffic quickly and build backlinks to your website. There’s no doubt that directories like Yelp, with around one million visitors a month, will give your business exposure, and they’re free.
While they may seem menial, business directories are an essential part of becoming a digital organisation; the numbers speak for themselves.
They don’t require a large amount of technical knowledge and skills like SEO might need, but they will give your potential customers easier access to your business.
Another aspect not be overlooked is social media. Having as much information about your business as possible on your social profiles, will ensure that the information is easily accessible to those billions of users out there.
4. Optimise Your Website For The Right Keywords
SEO has come a long way since the good old days. Keywords are now not the only aspect of SEO but they still play a role, and can be fairly easy to incorporate into your site.
Firstly, you need to identify the right keywords for your business. You don’t have to be an SEO expert to do this thanks to the many free tools out there like Ubersuggest. They let you easily identify the keywords that will work for your business.
Once you’ve identified those ideal keywords, you can incorporate them into different aspects of your site like your content and your meta tags.
Meta tags are bits of text that describe a page’s content. They don’t appear on the page itself, but only in the page’s source code. Basically, they’re little content descriptors that help tell search engines what a page is about.
Don’t get too eager for page views that you insert keywords totally unrelated to your pages, aka “keyword stuffing”.
Title tags, a type of meta tag, are one of the most important types as they have a real impact on search rankings. They’re found at the top of the browser and are useful if you want to give a page one primary title for the user, but want to clarify that information for SEO purposes.
The meta description is a useful meta tag as it explains to search engines and to searchers what your page is about. A compelling meta description tag could entice searchers to click through from the Search Engine Results Page to your site, especially if the description includes the keywords they were searching for.
5. Write Compelling Content
Writing compelling content is not the question, it’s the answer.
The question is: “Are you providing value to your audience?”, and the answer to that question should be: “Yes”, by means of creating engaging content that provides your audience with something that enhances their experience.
In modern life, time is precious. Your audience has limited time during which they most likely want to be entertained, in whatever form that translates to your business.
Being a leader takes courage, creativity and vision, all of which needs to be incorporated in the way you communicate with your audience.
The joy of creating compelling content is that it doesn’t require in-depth knowledge of SEO or any other aspect of digital marketing. It just takes a bit of ingenuity, understanding your customer, how to communicate with them and what their needs are.
You need to know everything about your customer in order to understand how to best communicate with them.
You’ll also find that some things surprise you by getting huge engagement, where other content you thought would be well received, doesn’t perform as expected. This is where you need to be monitoring and taking note of what’s working well and what’s underperforming.
In order for any business to succeed in the digital world, they need to have the ability to adapt quickly. Being nimble means that once you’ve identified the things that are working well, you can do more of them, and do less of what’s not.
The joy of today’s digital world is that if you aren’t a great writer/don’t have the resources available, you can find someone who is. Platforms like Fiverr feature endless copywriters offering their services. You may not be an expert but you can find someone who is.
When it comes to your business and your customers, you’re the person that knows best. Think of innovative ways to provide value to your customers through your content. Whether it’s a “How to” guide, an unusual topic or whatever it may be, think about how your content can solve a problem for your audience.
You need to be playing to their needs at all times.
Granted, the digital sphere is a complex thing that most of us will never fully understand, but that doesn’t mean that we can’t succeed.
There are some simple things that you can do to give your business a greater chance to being seen by the right people in an overcrowded digital world.
As time passes, more and more organisations will turn to digital which means that you need to do everything you can to stand out from the crowd. Knowing how to get your business listed on Google is an essential part of this multifaceted landscape.
Don’t forget that as fast as technology is developing, Google is most likely one step ahead. Their algorithm is so intelligent and intuitive that it’s outsmarting even seasoned website developers, SEO experts and digital marketers.
Take the harder route and do things the right way by providing things like exceptional content that impresses your audience.
Don’t try to trick Google by using shortcuts, that just won’t work; you may even be penalised for doing so. Google is way too smart to be tricked into thinking that your website is authoritative, you need to build authority over a period of time.
If you’re consistently working at it, then you will see results over time. It’s not a short-term strategy, it’s a long-term approach that will pay off in the long run.
While things like pay-per-click advertising will bring you immediate results,
SEO Digital Marketing won’t necessarily. What it will do is build your brand so it consistently becomes stronger over time, ensuring that you can compete on a global stage.
These steps are the start, use them to build the base for your digital presence and move forward from there. Use the tools that are available to you in Google Search Console and Google My Business to continuously improve how you communicate with your audience.
These tools provide real-time data that, if used well, can have a large impact on your business. Don’t be afraid to try things and make mistakes, you can utilise these tools to identify trends and issues fairly quickly, and adjust as required.