The key to high rankings and visibility of your website and business is to give Google the confidence that you are a real entity and trust that you are not some dodgy spammer trying to make a few quid by gaming their algorithm.
How do you get Google to trust you and have confidence that your business is a real entity?
You need to prove that your business is real by doing the following:
- Create a Google Business listing: https://www.google.com/intl/en_uk/business/ - by doing this Google will need to verify your physical location. They will send a postcard to the address you give them and you then have to use the pin number on the card to verify the location of the business. This is a strong signal to Google that you really do exist.
There are other ways to give Google the confidence in your location:
- Be consistent - always use the same address and contact details. Write your contact details in the text editor of your choice, mine is Notepad (on Windows) and copy and paste these details whenever you are registering your business on a website.
- Distribute - add your business to as many high-quality business directories that you can find. High quality is important, so I will list a few of these directories below. Low-quality directories won't necessarily hurt your efforts but won't pass the trust signals you need to Google and so it's not worth wasting your time filling in the forms. Trust your senses, if you see a website that looks a bit shite, don't put your details on it.
Which high-quality business directories should I use to distribute my details?
- Scoot.co.uk: https://www.scoot.co.uk/add-listing - these guys will distribute your details far and wide to their network of directories on websites like The Sun, The Independent and Touch Local.
- Yell.com: https://www.yell.com/free-listing/ you should be able to get a free website link with these guys, just stay away from any other shite they try and sell you. You're only interested in the free listing. Their salespeople will try very hard to get you to upgrade to premium packages.
- Central Index: http://centralindex.com/listings-management - this one is designed for businesses with multiple branches, but they're usually OK with single locations. All you need to do is follow the instructions on the page.
Trust & Reviews
Reviews are super important and will help potential customers decide whether you are genuine. It's also good to see how you respond to good and bad feedback. If you get arsy to negative feedback, you're probably going to put people off.
Google will see reviews as a signal that you exist and that the business is active.
Make sure you secure your brand/business name for each social network and add your website to your profile.
It's important to ensure you get the website address correct, so visit your website in your browser of choice and copy the address from the top of the browser. If you add multiple versions of your website it can reduce the effectiveness of the link.
Common examples of messing this up include:
Make sure it's the right one.
Top Social/Content Networks
Other things to consider:
Google Search Console
Adding your website to the Google Search Console gives you access to Google's engine room. As well as getting your website listed faster on Google, it allows you to see the performance of your website on the search engine and will highlight any issues it finds: https://search.google.com/search-console/about
You may find this a bit tricky to set up, if you drop me a message using the chat, I will be happy to help you set this up.
If you haven't done this already, you should definitely consider adding Google Analytics to your website. You will be able to see the traffic coming to your website, where it came from and what pages your visitors look at when they arrive.
That's my secret sauce, works every time.
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