If you’re a bit new to the world of Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), and are wondering why getting your website to the top of the Google results pages matters, then the fact that websites that show on page 1 get over 95% of all clicks, will hopefully hit it’s importance home. That means that less than 5% of users are prepared to scroll past page 1 when making a search. Less than 5%!
Now as with most things there is of course a ‘quick win’, which is to put a bit of money behind Pay-Per-Click advertising (PPC) so that your website shows above all others (this is not guaranteed by the way, but that’s for another day). But what happens when you turn that advertising campaign off? I’d take a good guess that the visitors stop coming...
So if you are looking for a long term fix, just how do you get your website to the pinnacle, the elusive ‘page 1’ of the search engine? Well you will be pleased to read that there are lots (lots!) of simple things that as a small business owner you can do to help your website climb the rankings.
That being said, I appreciate that you are busy people, and don’t have all day to read my top 100 SEO tips! So I’ve picked my current top 3 tips for 2018 that if you ensure to action, will help you to eventually get much closer to the top of the pile.
1. Make sure your website is mobile friendly.
In today’s world, it’s estimated that over 51% of website traffic comes through mobile devices. This is huge! And it also makes it clear why Google ranks this so highly. But how do you know if your site is optimised for mobile devices? Visit Google’s free pagespeed insights tool here, pop in your website address, and you’ll see out of a score of 100, just how well your site is set up for mobile.
As you can see from the below, my website is currently at 99/100, therefore it’s well optimised for Google. If your website achieves over 90/100 then you don’t need to worry, but if your site doesn’t perform so well, you will see at the bottom of the page that Google provides you with some helpful ‘optimisation suggestions’. Feel free to have a go at actioning these yourself, but if you get stuck, then don’t be afraid to get in touch and ask for some help.
2. Answer people’s questions!
Did you know that the terms that we search for are ever changing? For example in the past two years there has been over 80% growth in mobile searches for "should I" (“Should I quit my job?”, “When should I sell my house?”). This because we are always looking for answers and solutions to our perceived problems. So make sure that your website is answering these questions, and Google will look at yours much more favourably… but how do you do this? Well each month you could add a couple of new frequently asked questions to your website, and answer these questions head on. Or how about writing a monthly blog post to answer one on the questions that you get asked by your customers most regularly? These are really simple ways of helping your website gain credibility with Google, and most importantly bump you up the search engine results pages.
3. Please, please, please use Google Search Console...
Now I don’t like to diss other agencies, but if your website doesn’t have Google Analytics and Google Search Console set up, then I seriously have to question why. Having a website is great but if it’s not showing up in search results, and people aren’t visiting it, then you have to question why you bother having one at all? The simple fact is that if you have a website and intend on it generating business for you, then you must understand how to get more people visiting it. Google Search Console is one way to do just that. Take a look at the image below, this shows the search queries that users have made in order to reach this particular website, and there are so many learnings we could take from it. Just a couple of these being:
The websites ‘average position’ (this being out of all google searches, the average position the website has shown up in search engine results pages) is 53.2. And given that Google shows 10 results per page, this means that on average, this website appears on page FIVE in the Google search results. So to get this website into the top 10 results (and show on page one) there’s some work to be done.
The click through rates (or CTR; this being the % of people that clicked this website when it showed for the relevant search query shown in the first column) for terms including ‘tips’ are much higher than those without it. This tells them that people are looking for tips, so their content should reflect this, and adding more hints and tips to their website could really help to increase their number of visitors, and in hand improve their positioning.
Now as I said earlier, there are many, many more things you can do to improve your websites performance. I haven’t even touched on the basics of your websites setup, title tags and page descriptions, keyword research, or getting the most out of Google Analytics, but what we have done is scratched the surface of a topic that, if you start making steps today, you will see a real benefit of in the future.
If you’d like to learn further how to improve your websites search engine results, then please do get in touch with me for a free and informal chat. I’m always here to help and am happy to meet face to face if you are based in Bournemouth, Poole or Dorset, or similarly via telephone or online if you are based further afield.
Chapter Marketing, the small business marketing agency.
Darren Baker | Marketing Consultant | email@example.com | 07305 361037