So now that you have created a website you need to make people aware of your web presence. There are free ways and more expensive ways to do this. Since I am going through that process with my own website I thought I would share with you some of my efforts.
The key is to get results on generic terms. For example I would want my site to appear in a Google or Yahoo search using terms that included words like "small business marketing consulting."
If you think you have it rough try a search on “marketing consulting.” That brings up only 33,400,000 results in Google so you can imagine how easily you can be buried deep in those results. So how do you get into the top 10,000, let alone the top 10. Well without professional and sometimes pricey assistance you don't. Of course you can always buy preferred positioning with a paid for site. In Google that would put your site at the top of the page or on the right-hand side.
But if you are a small business and living on cash flow here are some ideas for improving search results that you can implement for no cost to you other than your time.
- Find local search engines and local directories and make sure you are listed. For instance in Toronto where I live you can list on www.toronto.net, or www.ziplocal.com just to name two. You probably have similar local search engines in your area. When you list on these these sites you get more exposure to the Googles and Yahoos of the world because they use sites like these to do quick compilations for generating search results.
- Another approach is to ensure that your website has local references in its page titles so that it is optimized for local searches. And make sure that you have lots of local references in page content scattered throughout the site.
- In Canada check your InfoCanada (www.infocanada.ca) listing and in the U.S. check InfoUSA (www.infoUSA.com). Make sure your company information is up to date so that search engines when they poll these sites has access to the right information about you. InfoCanada and InfoUSA are affiliated so in visiting one you may gain the benefits of both.
- Lots of web experts talk about the importance of blogging in improving search results. It should be filled with content relevant to the business and it should be incorporated into your web site content.
- Get listed on other related sites to link back to your site. You can figure out what sites would be most relevant. Don’t use your company name for the link. Use a descriptor to drive the link, for example, “Toronto's best small business marketing consultant.”
Once you have achieved all of these wait a couple of weeks and test your search results on Google and Yahoo. And never stop finding new ways to get your company name in front of your web audience. It will pay dividends.