Regular readers know I remain a strong proponent of doing everything possible to make your window and door website rank as highly as possible in organic (unpaid) local search results. While pay-per-click advertising and other internet marketing techniques have gained traction in recent years, local businesses still get the bulk of online lead generation, conversions and revenue from ranking highly in organic searches.
That is to say, the more things change, the more they remain the same. Before all else, focus on search engine optimization. It is the foundation for surpassing your local competitors, especially as consumers increasingly become dependent on the internet to select products and services.
I’ve found that some business owners remain confused about what techniques actually achieve the gold-label SEO level that puts a site on the top of the first page for local search results. Some concern themselves with aspects that have no effect whatsoever on organic search results. Here, we’ll define such details so you can focus on what does matter.
The four common SEO misnomers
1 - The age of your website
“Established in 1998” might look good on a website or on company literature to let potential customers know you’ve been doing business for 20 years, but Google doesn’t care. If your site is only five years old and has built authority with Google and other search engines, that’s all that matters. The year of your site registry is not something to consider, for better or worse.
2 - Whether (or not) you use Google apps or services
Some business owners believe they can “curry favor” with Google by utilizing Gmail or Google Docs. Others avoid using such products out of fear that Google will know too much about their operation by spying on their files. Neither has any basis in reality.
3 - Facebook likes and shares/other social media sharing
Google doesn’t care whether your site has been liked or shared on Facebook five times or 5,000—these have no direct effect on search engine ranking. However, a healthy level of sharing almost certainly ensures increased site activity, click-throughs and branding, which definitely affect your ranking. So, there is a definite benefit to social media shares, just not a direct cause-and-effect one.
4 - Using shared hosting or an inexpensive hosting site
It makes no difference to Google whether a site uses some expensive boutique host or a cheaper hosting service. As long as your host doesn’t negatively impact your site’s performance in any meaningful way (e.g., slow loading times, server outages), you’re fine.
The first step to better SEO is knowing where to focus your efforts. It starts with knowing what not to do; stay tuned to Window& Door for tips on what to do to increase SEO.