We have talked about this before, but I still see a lot of websites for local companies out there that still need to get in better shape. And what better time than as we near the new year? But of course, any time of year is a good time to get your website in tip top shape for your local search engines.
Now you may be able to do some of these yourself. If not, make a list and hand it over to your webmaster.
Do these 5 things this week and see some changes in as little as two weeks.
- Make sure your <title> tags are unique to each page and also focused on local search keyword phrases that match the content on the page.
- Your Meta Descriptions should be unique on each page and written to entice humans.
- Fill out your Google My Business account and get verified.
- Write down questions people ask you all the time and create a blogging strategy.
- Make sure your website is mobile friendly.
Day 1 – <Title> tags
These tags are the first place Google looks when seeing if what someone put in the search box is answered on your website page. Title tags are visible to us as the text in the browser tab. Look at the top of your browser and see what it says for your home page. Does it say “Home” or does it have a descriptive keyword phrase that describes your business?
For local search, you will want to have it look like this:
Keyword Phrase | Location your serve
For example, if I were a web design company, I would use something like this:
Web Design for your small business | Knoxville, TN
10 Minute Task – Make a list of your Title Tags as they appear in your browser tab. Roll your mouse over the tab to see the full text. Now rewrite them so that Google can find your page when asked a related question!
If you are managing your own website, and are using something like WordPress or other template platform, look for a plug in or section named “SEO.” Here you can put in the Title and Description unique to each page. If not, give the list to your webmaster and ask about adding the phrases to your site.
Day 2 – Meta Descriptions
Descriptions are not a factor in your Google ranking, but they are very important for the human that finds your page in a search result. This is the little bit of text that is found under the linked title. This text needs to entice the human to click and end up on your page. So it needs to match the intent of the page in about 140 characters.
10 Minute Task– If you are managing you own website, you will find the description input area in the same SEO section in your admin area as the Title tags. Review at least your five main pages, and rewrite if necessary. Fix the descriptions in your admin area, or create a document of descriptions to give to your webmaster along with the Title tags. Remember, each page needs to be unique and different.
Day 3- Google My Business
This is so important! Google has just begun a major project to eliminate businesses that are not verified in order to remove all the businesses that are either not active or went out of business. To do this they are asking you to verify your business using the Google My Business application, which is actually a great tool for our business!
Now, all your Google information can be edited in one place. Your Maps, Google + and what used to be known as Places. The information comes up in search results, Map results, and Google +.
If you are not verified, you might disappear or get pushed way down the list!
10 Minute Task – First you will need to know your Gmail Google login. Request the password if you have forgotten what it is and login to your account. It needs to be open before you go to the next step. If you have never gotten a gmail, you will need to get one. I suggest getting your business name followed by marketing. Such as Inboundtrainmarketing@gmail.
Now, go to http://gybo.com/mybusiness and start the process. This is the easiest way to do it. The system will tell you if you have a listing and what needs to happen next.
I did this for a client the other day in 3 minutes! You will want to spend a little more time creating the business information section, but to get the ball rolling it only takes a couple of minutes.
Google will mail you a postcard with your verification number. Be sure to look for it because it can look like junk mail.
Day 4 – Blogging Strategy
If we don’t create a list of blog articles that we can write about over the next month, there is a good chance that none will get written! You want a strategy that has you writing at least once per month, but once per week is better. Remember, that every blog article you write can possibly come up in a search result. So name them with keyword phrases and write them often to increase your possibilities of getting found.
10 Minute Task – Write down a list of 12 questions you are regularly asked by your customers. Each of these can become a blog article. You then have a full years worth of topics, or 3 months worth. Keep a record of other questions as they come up. This can keep you rolling for many months!
Day 5 – Be Mobile Friendly
Back in April Google made a big announcement about how it prefers to rank mobile friendly sites higher. This is because more and more people are accessing the web from their mobile phones. And since Google is in business to provide the best results, they had to make sure those results were user friendly.
10 Minute Task -To see if you have an “awesome” mobile friendly website, go to this link and type in your URL.
If you are not Awesome and mobile friendly, then please let your webmaster know, or learn what you need to do to make that happen!
Want to keep updated on what Google is changing? Join us for our monthly Geek Meets webinars. You can RSVP and also listen to past sessions at