Tuesday, July 3, 2012

What is Search Engine Optimization?

And Why Your Ann Arbor Business Should Care ... A LOT!

Basically, Search Engine Optimization [SEO] is the art of making sure that when people search for products and services related to your business, your site appears on or near the first page of results.

The Basics of Search Engine Optimization

There are a few basics that have a big effect on where your site shows up. For example, every business owner in Ann Arbor should have a good HTML programmer review their website to make sure the source code is efficient and that there are no obstacles to prevent the search engine robots [sometimes called “spiders”] from finding all the key information on the site. You should also do a careful review of what words people are typing into Google and the other search engines to find businesses like yours. There are many free tools that you can use to make sure your website contains the most important keywords, but an SEO expert will have access to some tools you may not, and will also be able to better analyze the data to help you decide which keywords to focus on. You will also want to find ways to get as many related websites as possible to link back to your site.

101 Tips That Will Rocket You to Page One of Google!

There are countless smaller tasks that can add up to big results for your website. SEO Ann Arbor uses a punch list of 101 action items that we apply to our clients’ sites, and if you have enough time, energy, and money, you could probably do the same. Not all of the action items are strictly SEO-related – we also focus on making sure visitors to our clients’ websites find something that makes them want to do business with our clients. A few of the areas used by SEO and web-marketing experts like SEO Ann Arbor are:
  • Include location information on the home page
  • Include descriptions of potential client categories
  • Include a prominent call to action
  • Employ social media to get more links and more traffic to your site
  • Write a blog to get current information in front of your web visitors

You Need to Get to Page One

SEO is critical for every serious business in Ann Arbor, and everywhere people search the Internet. Did you know that according to some experts, 95% of real traffic to websites comes from the results on page one of search engine results? That means if your business appears on page two, you are competing for the leftover 5% of potential customers. If this seems extreme, think about the last few times you searched for a product or service on the Internet. Like most of us, you probably went to Google and typed in a word or words that you thought would get you to the businesses you wanted. When you found one or two likely listings, did you keep scanning through the results? We don’t either, and most people who use search engines (which is almost everybody these days) click through to the first likely listing they see.
Here’s one last example to show you how powerful being atop the search listings can be. After we did a complete search engine optimization on one of our Ann Arbor client’s websites, a new customer called to arrange a visit to their business. At their first meeting, the customer said, “We were looking for your service, and when we searched Google, your website came up number one. I guess God meant for us to do business together.”
You can’t buy that kind of marketing power ... actually, you can. Our client had us use every resource at our disposal to make sure their website was number one on Google, and it created the most powerful impression possible on that particular customer. Three years later, 90% of that client’s business comes from search engine results. They tell us it was the best marketing money they have ever spent.

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