So here it is: the inaugural blog post for Jetter Creative. I went back and forth a number of times between doing a sort of throwaway, bland, intro post and writing something of actual content, and “actual content” just sounds a lot more worth your while.
To that effect, I’m asked a lot about either free or fairly easy ways to increase a website’s search ranking or visibility online. Unfortunately, search engine marketing is a huge and complicated ballgame of its own, and you can easily find yourself spending thousands a month on a campaign without actually knowing what that campaign is doing for you. My suggestion is to start simple, with outlets you fully control, such as online directories or social media outlets.
However, there’s one directory that stands out from the crowd: Google+. We all Google everything and anything, every day of our lives, so it makes sense that the biggest search engine also boasts a hugely beneficial business directory.
The easiest and most effective free action you can take is to create a Google+ page for your business.
By creating a Google+ page for your business, you’re already taking steps to increase your search engine ranking score for searches related to your business and website. Even better: creating the page also creates a mini profile within the search results (pictured on the right above), which allows those searching for your business to see key details about your operations, such as contact information and opening hours, without even leaving the search results page.
Having your business and its details registered with Google will also help your business to show up throughout other Google products, such as Google Maps. Your Google+ page could put your business on the map*, literally.
Additionally, if your website is laid out in a user-friendly fashion by Google’s standards (more on that at a later date), Google will layout the pages of your website in an easily navigable fashion, Google will display the pages of your site in a menu layout directly underneath the link to your homepage (pictured on the left above). This scores you even more real estate above the fold on the search results page.
More user friendly results page for your clients AND more traction for you and your business: everybody wins!
To create your own Google+ page for your business, start by clicking here, and following the prompts to create a page. Once you’ve finished adding all the text, photos, videos, and other information to your page that you’d like, (and remember: more is better), you’ll be prompted to either accept a validation call or be sent a validation postcard from Google to authenticate your business listing. Both the call and the postcard contain the same thing: a verification code that you’ll enter on the admin side of your page to finish setup and publish the page. Once your page is published, ta-da! You should start seeing an increase in calls and emails right away.
One last point I’ll make: in the vindictive high school that is the internet, Google will always be the Regina George; you have to play by her rules. A Google+ page for your business is a fantastic place to start.
*: it’ll help you land on Google Maps, but in this day and age what other maps even matter?