Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Help Google (and clients) find your website

Today I want to talk about Googling. Everybody does it. Go ahead take a second to google your business, I'll wait. Hopefully your website or blog shows up when you google your business name. Now google your business category, for example "wedding photographers in Pinehurst". Do you show up on the first page? At all?

A super easy way to be sure that you are coming up front and center is to create a Google local business listing. It is fast, free, and pretty cool. Since you just googled something you should be at a screen that looks something like this:

I show up under the local business results because I already have a listing, but lets pretend that you don't. Click on the headline "local business results for...". At the bottom of the next page you should see this:

Click on it and it will take you to a screen where you can enter in details about your business like contact information, website, hours, and it will even let you add pictures and video. I found the picture interface to be a little buggy so if the picture thumbnail comes up as "image not available" save it anyway, navigate to another page and then navigate back and it will probably show in your listing. Once all of your info is entered save it and it will bring you to your dashboard, which looks something like this:

As you can see, the details of your listing are shown at the right and on the left side of the screen it shows you a nifty graph of how many people are seeing your website and how many of those people are acting on what they see. Since I set my page up a little over a week ago I have gotten 67 impressions (the number of times people have seen my page as a result of a search) and 13 actions, including 10 clicks through to my website. That tells me about 20% of the people who see my page click through to my website. Not bad! It also tells you what words people are using to search for you so that you can use that knowledge for SEO or improving your ad. I have already gotten a client inquiry this week from my local google page. One thing to note, this page is not so easy to locate once you navigate away from it so it may be a good idea to bookmark it. The whole process takes about 15 minutes and it is a great resource for helping people find you. Have a great Wednesday (090909)!

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