Bringing SEO To The Main Stream
How Businesses Will Sink Or Swim In The Online Ocean
Search for shoes onGoogle — you’ll find about 1.8 billion results. Try to find something more specific, like Adidas OG Gazelles, and your odds are better — about 795,000 results — but still a lot to wade through for a pair of kicks.
So how does a site like Sneakersnstuff move up from the last page of Google search results to the first page, with powerhouse sites like Zappos? No one gets to the last page. In fact, it’s rare that someone will go to page 2 of Google search results. Actually, less than 10% of searchers venture past the 1st page.
So, what does an online business do about this? How can they dethrone the kings and rise to the top? The answer is simple: Find out what Google tracks in Webmaster Tools and Google Analytics, and do that stuff on your site.
I know what you're thinking. This guy is crazy. He doesn't know what he’s talking about. I admit to the former, but I do know what I am talking about, and have seen the results in my work with several online businesses that are competing against some major players in their respective industries.
Now, what I’m saying may seem like a generalized statement. Do what Google says and you will rank higher? That’s because it is, and here’s why I’m being bold enough to sum it up in this way.
Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.
Believe it or not, Google does not hate your business and they are not out to get you.
Whether you are an online store or a small blog for giraffe lovers in Southern California under the age of 37, your website contains information that Google desperately wants to serve up to people. But they’ll only do it if your site is trusted, reputable and contains the most relevant information based on the search performed by the Googler.
There are the all-important ranking factors that many SEOs preach. Lists have been created that give an overview of what everyone thinks Google is looking for.
But search results are just like the NBA. There’s always going to be a team in first place, and one in last. The last place team obviously did not prepare well enough, didn’t study their competition, and didn’t have support from their following during the season.
Now, think about your website. If you prepare your website with the right content, products and customer service, study your competitors and evolve to offer a better experience and more relevant content for your products and information, and finally, get your current customers involved and advocating your brand, you will start to improve your position. Seems pretty simple when we put it that way. That’s because IT IS!
“How Do I Move The Needle?”
Here’s what you do: Buy something from your competitor on their website. If they don’t have a tangible product, spend some time interacting with their site or subscribing to what they have to offer. Take notes on your experience, about what you liked and what you didn’t like.
The goal is to find out what makes them special. What do they do that puts them ahead of their competition?
Provide more for the customer, and they will put you on a pedestal and shout it out to the world. When the world hears about it, people will link to you, people will tell other people about you and the next thing you know, you have backlinks everywhere that will make you more popular than your competitors.
SEO Is More Than Just Content & Code
Make sure your meta tags, headers and sites content are accurate for what is on your site. If you don’t sell Gucci shoes, don’t target Gucci shoes in your keywords, meta tags and descriptions. Sounds silly, but people do it in an effort to trick the Google Machine.
Be honest, and Google will reward you for it.
People & Their Cell Phones
2016 is the year of the cell phone. If your website is not optimized for mobile, you’re missing out on more than 50% of your potential customers. Check your site’s performance from your mobile device, then your iPad. If it’s slow loading, not loading at all, or missing images that are important to your sales funnel, you are losing customers.
Bounce Like A Spalding
In the past few months, I have had several discussions with some of the top SEO’s in the world including Neil Patel, and two important concepts continued to come up in these discussions.
Bounce Rate For SEO
Put “Gucci shoes” on your title and description tags and then have them land on a page that sells Brooks Runners, I am willing to bet that 99% of those searchers are going to hit back on their browser or start a new search. When they do this, they are “bouncing” from your site. Google sees this as your page not being relevant to the search query, and demotes its rank in the SERPs (Search Engine Results Page). The lower your bounce rate, the more Google respects you and increases your rank.
Time On Site For SEO
If Google sees that people are spending time on your site, you get the Google Juice. Google likes when searchers land on your page from their search results and stay there. This tells them that your site was exactly what they were searching for. The goal is to aim for the most amount of time on your site, while also providing the visitor with lots of cool stuff to read, watch, buy, etc.
SEO Is Not Rocket Science.
There are lots of free tools to check and perform SEO on your own. You can also find SEO implementers at every price range from Specialists to Industry Experts. Ensure you check their work and see their results before you settle on one.
Remember — if Google tracks it, it’s important. Sign up for Google’s free tools like Analytics and Webmaster Tools. Start using, start tracking, start optimizing. You will work your way from the 34th page to the first page in no time.
What is your experience with SEO? What have you found the most challenging? What are the misconceptions you believed and then realized were wrong?