Let’s go ahead and burst a bubble for those wanting a quick, easy avenue to a top ranking on Google: There isn’t one.

Improving your site’s ranking and SEO, or search engine optimization, entails hard work and time. Furthermore, your website is but one approach — albeit an important one — to attain prospective clients alongside such other marketing techniques as direct mail, signage and fliers.

Fortunately, if you know some basic principals and research what’s been successful for other similar businesses, you can make the process of earning a higher Google ranking more efficient.

Let’s look at a few of those first steps.

Create content that’s actually valuable to your target client.

To begin, establish who your target client is. Married couples? Baby boomers? Executives?

Whoever it is, create content that addresses their needs and wants. Provide content that will help them and not only more likely to find your site when they search according to their needs, but they’re also more likely to have an actual connection with your company.

A blanketed, generic approach to your content won’t help you, as you’ll be competing with many other sites and it will be less useful to the customer. Put yourself in their shoes and create based on what would be useful to them.

Correctly use keywords through your website.

Use keywords naturally as part of your content or blog. And if you don’t have a blog, you probably should as it’s an easy receptacle for all your content that’s relevant to your specific target. Keep in mind that the more time people send on your site, the higher your SEO ranking will ultimately be.

If you use a site builder such as WordPress, Wix or Squarespace, look for SEO plugin tools. These are invaluable and efficient tools that can help you improve SEO rankings on not with keywords, but your entire site.

Cross-pollinate your site with itself.

After you’ve built an archive of useful content with relevant keywords, cross-link the articles and pages to one another. This not only encourages a deeper connection with your brand but also extends the amount of time a prospective client on your site. It also provides Google with more avenues to discover your content, which can contribute to a higher ranking.

You should however only create cross-links if they are actually relevant and useful. You risk being penalized by Google if its bots think you’re trying to deceive people.

Make sure you review Google’s SEO guidelines.

If you want to rank higher on Google, then it’s important to play by its rules. Check out Google’s SEO Starter Guide here.
“Search engine optimization is often about making small modifications to parts of your website,” Google says. “When viewed individually, these changes might seem like incremental improvements, but when combined with other optimizations, they could have a noticeable impact on your site’s user experience and performance in organic search results.”

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  • Bobby Burch

    Bobby Burch is the Founder of Bobby Burch Creative, a small business storytelling studio. Learn more about bobbyburchphotography.com and contact him at bobbyburchcreative@gmail.com

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