So you’ve got a business, you’ve built a website and are ready for customers to start rolling in. But, how do those customers know you exist?
A whopping 85 percent turn to search engines to find businesses, according to Search Engine Land’s recent Local Consumer Review Survey. And, over 2 billion searches are being conducted using Google every day so if your website isn’t optimized and you don’t have goals to do so, you may be leaving a ton of opportunity on the table. Today, we’ll focus today on two elements of search engine optimization including PageRank and keywords.
Start Where You Are
When you’re just getting started, or looking to make some improvements, it’s important to have a baseline so you can measure your success. A good place to start is to check your PageRank. PageRank is what Google uses to determine the importance of a web page. It’s one of many factors used to determine which pages appear in search results.
You can check your website’s PageRank with the Skadeedle PageRank checker for free here. You’ll receive a score from zero to ten, with a ten being the best of the best.
Here’s a breakdown of what the PageRanks mean:
0: Your site is not listed in the Google PageRank list.
1: Your site is listed and taking the first steps.
2: You’re starting to move up – keep working at it.
3: Average. You’re providing good content and most websites fall in this ballpark.
4: Above average. Your site is breaking away from the masses.
5: Good. Your site will usually show up on the first page of some searches.
6: Great. Your content is being found and shared. Keep going!
7: Awesome! Your hard work is paying off.
8: Your site is doing incredible you’ve got great peers including CNBC, EBay, and Bing (wowza).
9: You’re nearly at the top with the big boys like; YouTube, Yahoo, Facebook, Apple, Amazon.
10:You’ve reached the pinnacle of PageRank and can count yourself in the best of company like Google and CNN.
Once you’ve determined your PageRank you can focus on doing things to improve it. The best way to do this is to focus on providing relevant, high-quality content, getting inbound links from other sites with high authority and getting traffic to your site. If you start by focusing on publishing quality content and optimizing it for humans, you should be able to get the inbound links and the traffic along with it.
It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint
Achieving your search engine optimization goals won’t happen overnight, so don’t beat yourself up if your site has a low PageRank. It takes time to move from one rank to the next as search engines only crawl your site from time to time and based on how often you update it with quality content can affect it. Plus, it’s important to keep in mind that very few sites, will ever reach a rank of 10. Compare your site to where you started and keep focusing on improvement.
Key to Your SEO Success
You’ll also want to ensure you’re optimizing all the content on your website with keywords that are relevant to what your customers and potential customers are using when they search for your business. If you’re looking for some great tools to research what keywords will work best, Chipper Nicodemus, SEO Manager at VerticalResponse recommends, “Google’s AdWords Tool is the industry standard, but there are plenty of others that have lots of value! Mix and match the tools until you find the best ones that work for you.”
Nicodemus provided this list of free keyword research tools:
Google AdWords Tool– The industry standard for keyword data.
BoostSuite – analyzes all your website’s keywords, identifies the most valuable ones, and shows you how to optimize your pages with them.
Google Trends– Another cool tool from Google that compares how certain keywords are trending.
Scribe WordPress Plugin– A useful built in keyword tool if you run a site on WordPress.org
Microsoft Advertising Intelligence– Similar to Google’s tool, but for Bing.
By starting where you’re at, taking your time and building on your progress, you’ll be able to set and accomplish your search engine optimization goals, and then set some new ones to keep growing your business.
After wasting more hours than I care to admit trying to find the right help for my two businesses, I decided there had to be an easier way to get the support small business owners need. The advice was either WAY overpriced or of such low quality that it served no practical benefit so I decided to create my own website to provide information the way I would have wanted it. This is how BoostSuite came to be. I hope it helps you as much as it would have helped me.