When the topic of Internet Marketing comes up, it’s hard not to think about the role Google plays for any social media marketing strategy. It’s also something that for many small business owners is difficult to get their head around-it’s like this big complex “thing” out in cyber space that gives answers to almost any question. But what exactly is Google, and how does it work for a small business owner? More importantly, why is it so important to include a strategy for attracting visitors to your company’s website via Google?
First of all, I want to simplify what Google is, how it works, and why it works for small business owners trying to find their place in the search engine index. It’s the most frequently used search engine in the world and it needs to be included in every small business owners marketing plans.
Think of Google as a big index of information that has been cataloged and sorted so it’s easy to find things. Almost like a simplified version of the the cataloging systems used in libraries. For a librarian to put a book in it’s proper place, he/she must know the genre of the book, who the author is, the title, etc. For websites, Google is like the librarian trying to determine where best to “file/sort/categorize” websites on the Internet-but on a much…much…much more grand scale. Simply put, Google is an index of websites.
If you want Google to work for your business, sending you traffic and customers, you have to do some work for Google first, so it knows where to “file” you. I call it “Speaking Google,” and if you want to play in Google’s sandbox, you need to understand the basics of how to “Speak Google” and what it is Google NEEDS from you to properly index your website so it can be found.
The best way to approach your love affair with Google is to view internet searching from Google’s perspective-a publicly held company that must remain profitable. Google is in business to make money, just like you and I, even though many of the services they provide are free. People visit Google everyday looking for the best and most current information in the form of search results. When we continually find what we’re specifically looking for and KEEP getting good information back from Google, WE keep going back to Google to search again. Google earns revenue when consumers like you and I keep using the search engine to search the internet everyday. The best way for Google to keep users happy and returning to search time and time again is to provide relevant, current, and timely search results each and every-time. If we always find what we’re looking for when we visit Google, there’s no reason to try a different search engine like Yahoo! or Bing for instance. People use Google most frequently because generally speaking, Google provides the best search results.
If you want Google to include your website in certain search results organically, meaning you’re not paying for the click, you have to help Google decipher what your site is about and the targeted search terms (aka “keywords”) which best fit your website.
So how can you, as a business owner, help Google, so Google can help you? It’s all about the tags, the content, the external links (those pointing to the site from other sites), the quality of the content, the content itself, the internal links (links between pages on the site), the “bounces,” the content, the site activity and you guessed it…the CONTENT. In case I didn’t make my point, content is king, but not old and stale content that hasn’t changed in years, I mean current up-to-date content in the form of a blog and a website that’s active and not static.
The first thing Google “sees” when it crawls a website is the “title tags,” the “meta tags,” and the site description. It’s shocking how many websites do not have these simple tags and therefore are left out of the search engine because Google isn’t sure where the site belongs. It’s like a librarian having to read an entire book to figure out where it should go because it’s completely missing the cover. Google looks at things like the HTML tags to help it determine where to categorize it so it knows when to “pull it up” in the results.
As I’m sure you can imagine, getting your website to show up in the Google index is no easy task, but it’s certainly worth tackling and understanding if you want Google to send you its “searchers.” There are many articles here about internet marketing and Google to help you better understand how it all works. Make sure you subscribe so you don’t miss a single hot tip. Clicking here will take you to all the articles and tips related to Internet Marketing.
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