There are currently 450 billion web pages and counting. How are you getting found and when you do get found are you set up to convert that visit into a sale?
No one could have anticipated the scale and impact of the internet just 20 years ago but now it’s here and it’s here to stay. It can be a powerful asset to your business model or it can render you completely irrelevant. The good news is that you can control up to a point how quickly and efficiently you get found and when you do get found whether that visit turns into profit for you.
On September 21st, 1999 was a press release about an up and coming company called Google Inc, considered “one of the fastest growing search destinations on the World Wide Web” (web.archive.org).
During that press release Google stated search averages of 65 searches per second at peak times and three and a half million searches per day (web.archive.org).
They now average 40,000 searches per second and and 3.5 billion searches per day (internetlivestats.com).
That’s a lot of opportunity to get your business found on a daily basis. There are millions of people everyday searching for your product. It’s not as simple as just getting online anymore. You need to set your website up so Google can scan your website as efficiently and quickly as possible.
It wasn’t too long ago that search engine optimization wasn’t important. Basic keyword stuffing and automation could get you ranked at the top of Google in a relatively short period of time no matter where you were.
Google and other search engines adjusted and improved their algorithms over time leveling the playing field while also making things more complicated all at the same time. These algorithms are made up of hundreds of different variables that are shrouded in secrecy. The only thing that Google releases are general guidelines and recommendations while the rest of us are left to test new methods while keeping up with the constant changes.
Getting ranked at the top of search engines is now a full time job thus search engine optimization as a career was born!
SEO is basically the art and science of speaking to and deciphering the language of search engines. It’s making your website appealing to search engines in a way that you will get found.
It’s also fluid and dynamic meaning that you have to maintain it over time. You can’t just flip a switch and keep yourself at the top. Much like your car you’ll need to invest time and money into keeping it running. A regular oil change can go a long way but you’ll also need to change the tires, get a regular service on your breaks, wash it to prevent erosion and maybe add some things to help it last and perform better over the long run.
Anything in our lives needs maintenance and up keep. Keeping your website optimized and fund in search engines now takes a whole team. Algorithm changes prevent search engines from becoming exploitable while also creating a level playing field.
Finding the right team is more important than ever. There are a lot of back door SEO tricks that can get you banned from Google or just don’t work at all. Companies can spend a fortune paying a crooked SEO company to get them ranked using methods that don’t work. Once you figure out it’s not working the damage is already done and you may have spent a small fortune.
SEO is not an over night thing. It can take months to start to see your methods pay off. This is difficult for a business owner to grasp or understand. Business owners are used to the old way of advertising which is in your face. SEO takes careful planning and finesse but can convert at a much higher rate once it begins to pick up momentum. Once your website gets ranked it can generate a revenue stream that is more consistent and manageable than if you sent out print ads or had walk-ins.
SEO doesn’t just stop with your website. It goes well beyond that in the form of social media and a strong content marketing plan.
What is content? Content is how you feed Google and other search engines. Google is a giant search engine. It’s purpose is to organize information in a way that can be found. If there wasn’t any content Google would be an empty shell of pathways.
When TVs first came out they needed TV shows to fill the channels. This is content. Same with radio stations. Music is content that is used to fill the channels. Content can be both informative or entertaining. It can be used to educate or to sell. Movies are content and movie theaters used to be the avenue in which they were spread. Now there is Netflix and Hulu where you can stream entertainment directly to your living room.
Content on your website can be a blog post, video, ad copy for your home page, pictures, an e-book, or MP3. What you’re reading right now is content. It’s used to help you get found.
Good content takes time to plan for and create which can help you convert at a much higher rate than if you didn’t have it.
Once you’ve created content you can do two things. You can always just sit back and wait for Google to come around and index you. The Google spiders will eventually make their way to your website and if it’s set up correctly index you in their database to get found.
Google scans billions of webpages per day and indexes them into their monstrous databases located across the globe. Considering the scale of the internet it’s very impressive it takes less than a second to pull up the most relevant search results for you.
If you share it on different channels the odds of your content and website to get scanned increases. This is where social media comes into play. Social media is a place where you can share content that other people can also share thus turbo charging your search rankings. It plays both a direct and indirect part in SEO and can be a very powerful tool if used properly.
If you’ve just started a business all of this can seem both time consuming and daunting. You just read about something vast that constantly shifts and changes adding new rules along the way. To top it off no one can tell you 100% how this Google beast works but only that they have a general idea.
This is exactly why SEO is the most important part of your business. SEO is an investment much like your business was when you first started it. When used in combination with your own tried and true methods it can take your bottom line to new heights than if you didn’t implement it regularly.
It’s not about having a magic bullet. It’s about having the right SEO company and team to both implement what works and anticipate and adjust to the never ending changes that come along the way.