Running a business is no picnic. There is just so much to deal with in merely keeping it afloat, let alone trying to improve things. One of the areas that often gets forgotten is that of marketing. This covers a lot of ground, SEO only being a small part. However, as gaining customers is a key factor in the success or failure of any business, it is one that cannot be ignored.
If you are reading this you have probably already tried to boost the traffic to your site, having perhaps already used one (or more) SEO agencies. If this is the case you will want to know how Serendipity is different and why you should contact us for a chat?
What Makes Serendipity Different?
You may have already seen some answers to this question on our About Us page, but if not, please do have a quick read, as it explains our approach and gives details of our experience. There is also a link to the bio of Graham Baylis if you want even more information.
If you are unsure as to why SEO is important, then please read the next section, but if you know all about this and just want to know how we can help, please skip to the ‘First Step in Improving Organic Traffic levels’.
Why Search Engine Optimisation?
The purpose of any SEO activity, either national or local, must be to attract potential customers. Essentially this means that a new business needs a presence on Google, either a website, a Google My Business listing or best of all, both.
For businesses aiming for national coverage, a website is a must, whilst those just wanting a local presence, MAY get away with just a Google My Business listing. However, SOM does not recommend the latter, due to the fact that a GMB listing gets ‘support’ from that businesses’ website. This together with the fact that the people can be directed to the website from the GMB listing (which by its nature allows the business to put its message across in a far better, detailed manner), makes combining them the best bet for success.
Should businesses Wanting National Coverage Forget About GMB?
This is a question many businesses may ask, and for our part at SOM, we believe that any business should promote itself via Google My Business as it provides another possible source of leads and business. It is also of course FREE, which makes it even more worthwhile.
First Step in Improving Organic Traffic levels
If this has not been done, the Google My Business should be claimed. This can take a few days as Google have to verify your ‘ownership’, so the sooner this is done the better.
Once verified you should add as much content as you can to the listing, five photographs being the minimum. Don’t forget to add all the INFO, this including:-
The full Address and Telephone Number – Remember to use the SAME one in all references to your business, this important because having different NAPs (Name Address and Phone numbers) will cause Google to give you a lower listing in the 3 Pack, meaning you could lose a lot of business.
- Your Opening hours
- A detailed list of Products
- The Business Description
As your business will have been around for a while, you will also need to check on the Citations that your business already has. There will, more than likely, be some variation in the NAP details in these citations. This will need to be fixed, and again can take some time. Nevertheless, this process needs to be attended to. But don’t worry, as you would expect, Serendipity can help.
The Second Step – An SEO Status check.
For all new customers, Serendipity provides a detailed check on ‘where a site is on the journey to better rankings and traffic’. See details of this on our Free SEO Survey page.
Once this has been run, we will have an accurate picture of the site and the problems it has, together with some idea of the keywords that are working for the competition.
What the Check Will Reveal?
- Any technical issues such as ‘mixed content’, broken links and images without Alt text.
- The keywords that are bringing in traffic to the site.
- The keywords that are sending traffic to the competition, this giving a good picture of the potential traffic that could be gained.
- The links to the site, showing whether the profile is a healthy one. This again being compared to the competition.
- Whether the basic SEO (Titles and Descriptions) of the site meets the standards required.
More can be gleaned by having a look at the contents of some of the pages and by having a chat about the message you want to ‘put across’ to your potential customers. This should include how you can help them with any issues or problems they have, and how you can help them. Answering questions can also help you get that very special ‘Position Zero’ placement on Google, but more about that later.
You also have to decide what makes your business special and what your Unique Selling Points are. All of these should already be woven into your website’s message, but if not we can discuss how this can be done.
This comprehensive check is really useful for any business.
The Next Step – Keyword Research and the Questions to Answer
Think of this stage as a part of your market research, it being all about finding out what words and phrases people are using when searching for your products or services. It will also provide you with a host of questions that people want answers for. This research allows you to KNOW what to talk about on your website, and just HOW YOU CAN HELP AND ENGAGE with your customers. You may have had this done before, and if you are happy that it is sufficient then fair enough, a quick chat with us will soon sort this matter out.
Mapping Keyword onto the Pages
This is the stage where the target keywords selected from the keyword research, are assigned onto the pages of the site, it being that pages ‘job’ to both answer the needs of the visitor AND to get a ranking on Google.
The Most Important Thing is The Content
It goes without saying that the most important part of a website is its content. This MUST answer the objectives that any visitor has when reading that page. It is therefore VITAL to alter the copy with that in mind. However, it is also a good idea to speak in a manner that Google likes too. So, as you know what keyword phrases that page is trying to get a rank for, you must then make sure that Google likes what it sees. That means using a variety of words that are similar and related to your target phrases. We have a great tool for this and can ensure that the end copy is as finely tuned as possible.
There are other things to consider here, such as
- Expertise, Trustworthiness and Authority
- Internal Linking
- Overall User Experience
- Videos etc
and here again Serendipity can help.
The Next Stage – More Link Building
You will no doubt have been told all about this before, that links are important (whilst also not being the total answer).
We concur with these thoughts and know from our years of experience that links are vital.
Serendipity has years of experience in this area, and yet again, can help you succeed in this vital area.
Meeting Your Targets
You may have these all set up, but if not, it will be a good idea to set targets for your business, and this goes for SEO too. But what things can you measure and how?
Both offer a different set of data and together they tell you everything you need know.
Analytics can provide you with information on
- How many visitors the site is getting
- Where those visitors are coming from
- How long they are staying on the site’s pages
- Some data on conversions (this however has some limitations)
Google Search Console provides you with data on
- Whether the pages have been indexed by Google
- If these pages have any errors on them from Google’s perspective
- The phrases that the site is being found for on Google
- How many times the site is appearing in the search engine’s listings
The above list only covers the most important data sets. There is far more information to be gleaned. However, when using either of the above, it is vital to have a good idea of the question you want answering. Otherwise, you can spend time looking at reams of data for no real purpose.
Again, Serendipity can help you.
We do this not only by knowing the questions to ask, but also about ‘how to ask them’ of the system concerned. We also provide comprehensive reports on what we have done, and why, so that you know just what is happening and where your business is heading.
Some SEO companies are very secretive about what they do and run all their reports using totally automatic systems, which then just send the results to your email account.
We do all our reports manually, allowing us to spot issues like ‘Negative SEO’ as well being better placed to answer any of your questions.
Hopefully, the above will give you a good idea of the steps any business wanting more traffic and business from their should take and just how Serendipity can help you with each stage. If you would like to know more, then please do contact us for an informal chat, we know we can help you.