It’s easy to get to the top of Google search rankings…
Honest, it is. Anyone can do it.
And many people do easily reach the heady heights of rank 1 on Google search….
… for terms NO ONE is looking for – including your business name!
But, once you get to the top of Google, that’s just half the battle…
It’s such an unqualified question though, that it is impossible to answer with “the best way”. It does depend on where you are now, what terms you want to be at the top for and how much time, effort and money you’re prepared to invest.
In fact, it is totally the wrong question to ask first.
Let me share with you a paraphrased phone conversation I had earlier this week.
Me: Good morning, Jan speaking. How can I help you?
Them: Do you do SEO?
Me: Yes, I can do. Do you have a website?
Them: I have a blog
Me: Great! Do you want me to take a look at it now and we can briefly chat about how we may be able to work together?
Them: I just want you to tell me what is the best way to get to the top of Google and how much you will charge to do it.
Me: Well, to even begin answering that, I do need to know where you are now, who your target audience is and your goals…
Them: I just want to be at the top of Google when people type in [business sector].
Me: Well that is quite a localised business. The first place to start is adding your details to the online directories and review sites. Have you claimed your Google Places page?
Them: Yes, we don’t show up yet.
Me: Well, I do offer a local submission service that includes online directories and Google Places optimisation if…
Them: [Interrupts] I want our blog to show up at the top of Google. Do you have a relationship with Google?
Me: Okay. I will say that the quickest and most cost effective way for a local business to start appearing in the Google search rankings is by taking advantage of the local business listings. I don’t have any special relationship with Google, anyone who says that they do isn’t telling the whole truth.
So, your business blog… who is your target audience and what are you doing at the moment?
Them: I want everyone who types in [business sector] in Google to find our blog
Me: In your town?
Them: No, everywhere.
Me: Do you offer your service throughout the UK?
Them: No, but we can go everywhere.
Me: But the people you want to attract as clients are local people?
Me: Then I would recommend you start with local listings and local search. There’s no need to get to the top of Google search in areas where you don’t offer a service. You’ll just be wasting your time and money.
The conversation went on for a little while longer. What was clear was this local business owner wanted something that really wasn’t suitable because he had heard that ‘getting to the top of Google’ would somehow transform his business.
‘Everyone’ is not your audience
You CAN get great leads and new business through Google, other search engines and listings. But ‘Everyone’ won’t want your products and services. You’ll waste a lot of time, effort and money trying to attract ‘Everyone’ too.
Before asking, “What is the best way to get to the top of Google?” answer the following 3 questions:
1. Who am I trying to reach (be specific!)
2. What do they search for? (research, don’t guess)
3. Do I have a page on my website that address these terms and asks for an action?
Question 3 is important because, you can ‘get to the top of Google’ and still not get business from your website. There’s several reasons. It can be because :
- People simply are not searching for the terms you rank for – including your business name!
- Your web page doesn’t address what people are actually searching for – it talks about you rather than what you can do for them,
- You’re targeting the wrong type of words and phrases,
- You don’t ask for the action – to call you, to send an enquiry etc. and have how to do it easily available.
I do suspect that this local business owner had been approached by our directory friend – his comment about special relationships with Google does appear to be one of their ‘selling points’ for Google Adwords.
That is another point to think about – which ‘top of Google’ do you want?
- AdWords – right at the top of the page and the side bar. This is paid for advertising
- Places/Maps – local search specific, your business on the Google map and personal Place page
- Organic listings – natural search listings, you don’t pay Google for these
For local businesses, the easiest way and most cost effective way to get to the top of Google rankings is by taking advantage of Google Places and local business listings. Once you have these listings it is so much easier to rank your individual pages too.
Want to know more? Just fill in your details in the blue box below and I’ll send you over my “Getting Started Online” guides.
– Jan.What Is The Best Way To Get To The Top Of Google? by Jan Kearney