Increase Your Firm's Visibility on Google

This can all sound confusing and complicated, but it’s really simple – generate great content that is relevant to your target audience. Then, make sure they can find it.

 
Increase Your Firm’s Visibility On Google

By Christine Hollinden

No matter the industry or markets in which your firm competes, your website should be an integral element of your integrated marketing strategy – providing key information, demonstrating knowledge leadership, and, ultimately, generating leads. You may only have a website because it is expected for businesses today, but if you think your website isn’t important, you are wrong. You can be assured that your web site is a reflection of your firm and that prospects are checking out your credentials before they pick up the phone. Regardless of its role, prospects have to “find” your website first. That means having a website that is “Google friendly” is imperative.

Just when you think your website is perfectly optimized, the unexpected happens – another Google algorithm change and your website drops to an obscure page location leaving you with a decline in traffic and leads. When you review the sites that have bumped yours into “no man’s land,” the results seem unexplainable and contrary to Google's "rules." Sites with low-quality content are at the top, dislodging sites with what Google claims it really wants: high quality "Hummingbird" content. It's a game that we must not only endure, but one we must conquer to maintain reach. Follow these 4 easy steps to offset this challenge.


1.
       Relevance. First of all, clearly determine your website’s purpose in terms of clients and prospects. What role does it play? What role could it play? If you don’t know, consider using a website survey tool. Just one or two questions can present entirely new insights on ways to make your site more relevant. 
 
2.

Structure. The Hummingbird algorithm introduced two major changes in search results. First, it recognized the difference between “what” people were searching and “why” they were searching. Secondly, Hummingbird’s use of semantic search queries (“Where do I …?” “How do I …?” etc.) tries to understand how people are using language. This means you must think about the language you use within your site and how you structure sentences. For example, look at your content and think about synonyms or alternative meanings of words or phrases. Fix it.

3. 

Content. Google prefers to index content that is refreshed on a consistent basis. Think of materials such as blogs, newsletters, articles, and white papers. Length of the content plays a role, as well. While it's easier and less time consuming to write articles that are 250-500 words in length, there's evidence that the longer the post (1,000-2,000 words), the better the chances of ranking higher – even higher than your web site. {See our Blog Post on Blogs

4. Tools. There’s more to increasing your website’s visibility on Google than understanding the needs of your audience and providing quality content. Staying visible on Google is a process that requires special tools . . . and, Google is loaded with them. Two key tools are Google Analytics and Google Authorship. If your site doesn’t have Google Analytics installed, do it now. Learn how to use the program then, once you understand how to interpret the data, study the analytics and make the changes based on the insights gathered.

Google Authorship and AuthorRank are just as vital as Google Analytics, if not more so. Google Authorship connects content with its author and displays that information (along with a profile photo) on search results. {Click here for a step-by-step guide to Google Authorship.} When your content is shared or liked, Google recognizes you as an authority. AuthorRank remembers you and your relevance as it relates to specific topics.