It's a new year, and most of us are hoping for better things in 2021. Are you seeking to improve the SEO for your online business this year? Whatever your answer, it's wise to update your search engine optimisation (SEO) knowledge because the way SEO works means that it’s a constantly changing entity. Keep reading to see how one or all of these tips could form part of your strategy for improving your SEO.
SEO Stands for Search Engine Optimization and basically refers to the processes that are followed when it comes to optimising (getting the most out of) a website to be ranked by search engines. The most popular search engines on the internet are Google, Yahoo, Bing and Microsoft.
When a website is designed and developed, it should represent more than just a portfolio of your products and services. After all, what’s the point of having a website that looks awesome, but goes unseen by the people that would like to buy your wares? SEO is the technical part of marketing online as it helps your website get promoted to the correct location – right in front of buying customers.
There are various techniques used to get more traffic to your website from search engines, which can be broken down into two categories. Off-page SEO, is the work undertaken externally to a website and on-page SEO are the changes made on the actual website.
If you read our last blog, you would know that it covered some important reasons for being on social media. Whilst it can be a great way to get more traffic to your website, it can also be an overwhelming element of digital marketing to understand and implement.
If you're unsure about how to get to grips with social media, not sure about what you're doing, or simply feel confused about which platform is right for your business - then keep reading. This weeks blog outlines some of the pros and cons of the most popular social media platforms around.
There are several ways that a company can use SEO to improve the rankings of a website. One way that this can be done is through the use of social media. You may think that when you post your comments or blogs that only a few people see what you’ve written. However, it’s the sharing element of your creations that creates the magic - it increases visibility, improves traffic, and generate backlinks. Let’s take a deeper look at how social media can help improve your online visibility…
If you are struggling with your online presence and aren’t quite sure about how to improve things, one positive action you can take is undertaking a review of your Google My Business (GMB) profile. But what’s a GMB, I hear you ask?
They are the short lists that pop up when you search for something generic like “cafes near me” or when you enter a specific business name, the GMB listing can appear. Businesses registered with a GMB can also appear on google maps. This platform can improve your online presence because it allows your business to be seen by the right people searching for you and could ultimately lead to you getting more leads.
Setting up an account is easy. Google will send you a postcard with a verification code which helps them confirm you are located where you claim to be at and not across the sea. Once you have been verified, you can go about optimising your profile.
Have you considered starting a blog for your business but you’re not quite sure if it would be of benefit? You're aware that creating a regular blog will take up your precious time and you aren't sure if it is worth the effort? Well today, we’re hoping to dispel your worries and explain to you how a regular blog can help your business in a number of positive ways.
As the internet continues to accelerate into an ever-growing marketplace, it means that your competitor's websites are becoming as frequent as stars in the night sky. They sell the same goods or services as your company does online and the question is, what will set your company apart?
With increased competition, your website must impress customers when they visit. An impressive site can help your brand to stand out from your competition and great web design will seize and keep a customer's attention. So, what are the elements that make a good website? Here are four areas that we recommend you consider.
Over the years, email marketing has become an art form. There are so many variables that it is almost impossible to scientifically pinpoint what works or does not work. This blog discusses 5 major areas of concern one must be aware of and offers 5 tips on how you can negotiate around them.
You don’t have to be a website designer or developer to know that when lots of people visit your website, that’s a good thing. It means that you are offering potential customers services and/or products that they want to buy or hire.
But (yes, there’s always a but…) getting people to your site and opening doors for them to peruse is not an easy objective to attain. The online market is saturated with services like yours and finding unique ways to stand out gets increasingly difficult, year on year.
Website maintenance is every bit as essential for your business development as other policy revisions. These days, far more business flows in through the internet, hence, making your up-to-date online presence more essential than any other process. Lack of consistent website updates can gradually cause your online presence to fade away.
Website maintenance services include things like:
· website changes
· content updates
· illustration or photo modifications
· exchanging outdated images
· email maintenance
· PDF file development and a lot more
Nowadays, it is very common for people looking to purchase a service or product to find out more about it by using the internet and Googling it. Anyone who wants to grow their brand, no matter how small their business is, needs a website.
Having a website for your small business is not just about selling your products or services online. Creating an optimised website provides value to customers and is a form of free advertising. Still need convincing? Then keep reading these 7 reasons of why a website would work wonders for your business…
During this period of lockdown, it’s important to keep busy and let your customers know that you are still open for business. Whilst how you are delivering your services and products may have changed, what should remain intact is your hope for the future and keeping your customers informed about your service/s.
One way of doing this is by writing a blog. We come across many businesses that have started doing this, but that have somehow not kept up with creatively writing about what they do. This comes as no surprise as regular thought is required, along with commitment of time and some level of planning.
Back in 2017, we wrote a blog that outlined actions that would result in your website bringing in more business. Three years on and those principles remain the same…
To ensure that your website delivers more business to you, here are 10 effective steps that you can take.
1 - Mobile Friendly Design
In April 2015, Google announced that it would favour websites that are “mobile-friendly”. Companies that are not investing in new websites, could see a decline in their business leads as their websites fall down the rankings.
A responsive web design ensures that no matter what device someone uses (i.e. tablet, laptop, mobile phone) your website is displayed on the screen in the most effective way. No longer should mobile phone visitors see a website that is used for standard desktops, like a laptop, which can make viewing content, navigating menus and clicking on links difficult and awkward to use.
Improving the online visibility of your business, is something that every serious business owner should be thinking about. The bottom line is that Increased visibility, equals to more customers visiting your business and thereby offering you more opportunities to make money.
The following details was originally written by us in 2017. The blog was called , 'Four simple ways to improve your businesses visibility'. It gives bite-sized options of what actions you can start taking today without making you feel overwhelmed. So what are you waiting for?
Whether you’re a small start-up business or an established company looking to increase your profits being visible must be one of your primary objectives if you want to achieve this goal. Spreading the word about what you do, the service you provide and the products you sell can be done in a variety of ways and advertising in print still a popular option. This can be accomplished through:
- Placing an advert in a newspaper or directories like Yellow Pages or Thomson Local
- Distributing leaflets through letterboxes
- Putting up your flyers in local supermarkets, newsagents, coffee shops and community centres
If you have a shop on your local high street, you will continually be advertising your brand with your logo above the door and your wares in the front window. But how many of us have a traditional shop front to be visible to passers-by?
The fact is, the way we shop is changing with an increasing number of high street shops going out of business every day. In 2016 there were a reported 15 shop closures a day across the UK and online shopping is one of the factors contributing to this outcome.
With the demise of the traditional physical shop and the increase in businesses going online, the way one advertises a business has transformed. Having an online website window can offer far more sophisticated ways to reach an endless, much broader, supply of customers potentially from around the world.
If directly reaching out to like-minded businesses isn’t your thing, or if talking to friends, family and strangers fills you with dread, one option (to start you off gently) is to go to a conference. They are full of people open to being spoken to, having an exchange of ideas and maybe most important of all - exchanging contact details. Who knows, you could be talking to the next Bill Gates!
The Perfect Layout team recently attended the free Mums Enterprise Roadshow event in London and we were delighted to see how many people attended. There were numerous stands offering various services and franchises and talks given by industry experts every half an hour. It provided the perfect opportunity to have a chat with other aspiring individuals who were keen to follow their passion and soak up as much information as possible. Whilst the topics were of a preliminary advisory level, looking beyond this, it was a brilliant place to do some networking and get our name known!
Online social networking involves working from social media platforms such as, Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. If you have something interesting and unique to say about what you do, then use these methods to get your message out there.
As long as you stay within the terms and conditions of each social media platform, you will be able to attract new and repeat customers through what you say. You can also run advertising campaigns, gain followers and engage deeply with your customers and get to know them. They then ‘like’ or recommend what you’re offering, your credibility and reputation grows and so will your visibility and profits. The cost for using this method is mainly your time. You really do get out, what you put in, so make the effort (or hire someone to do it for you!) and start writing.
Also known as Pay-per-Click (PPC), it allows you to be seen above your competitors when a search is made using keywords related to your business. A big plus is that you can track the number of clicks people make on your advert, measure the cost and pay Google only made when a customer visits your website.
The cons of undertaking a Google AdWords campaign are that you need to really understand your business, your customers and, to a certain extent, how the internet works. For example, what words will people use when searching for your business? Choose those terms and then you can set your budget. If you have numerous search terms then your budget will need to be set accordingly. It may take a while to see a return on your investment (ROI), but over time, with some tweaking, this can be achieved.
They all help increase your visibility when search engines like Google and Bing, crawl the internet looking for sites that your website is linked to. If your business is cited on these directories, the search engines will see this and view you as being more trustworthy and credible than someone who isn’t listed. The result – your rankings improve.
It’s important to gauge the type of things your audience may want to hear about against your ability to provide them with interesting ways to share your expertise. So, get creative and start writing about how the life of your business can add value to the life of your customers.
So, step out of your comfort zone and try one of these techniques. If you want your business to be more visible online you must develop ways of reaching your customers. If investing in social media platforms isn’t your thing, then take the time to master something else first. You’ll probably surprise yourself with your own creativity and ability at thinking outside the box. The more confident you become, the more skills you’ll attain and the more your business will benefit.
If you'd like a chat any of these tips why not give us a call on 01708 578 015 it would be our pleasure to help you!
1. Keep it Fresh. Your website content must be fresh, trustworthy and informative. Search engines like new content so you have to keep your website regularly update. Don't create a website and just let it sit there forever.
2. Generate Organic Traffic (Part A). This is part of your search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy and first you have to know and plan your keywords. Keywords are the words that people type into a search engine to find something on the internet. A keyword can consist of a single word, such as "bike" or an entire phrase, like "mountain bikes for beginners".
3. Generate Organic Traffic (Part B). Keyword placement is important. Make sure your 'title tags' (the words you see in your browser window) have your keywords in them. This is what search engines use for the title display in their search results.
4. Generate Backlinks. This where other internet sites link to your website. They are important because search engines look at the number and the level of quality of websites that connect to your website to determine how your page may rank on their listing. One of the most common ways of finding backlinks is in trading links with other websites.
5.Article Marketing. Article marketing is a technique to generate quality backlinks to your website quickly and easily. Each article will have an author's resource information box that is attached to your article submission and you can refer readers to your website.
6. Use Feeder Sites. A feeder site is a third party website that allows you to place content on its webite. Search engines like feeder websites and there are many feeder sites online that you can use to siphon traffic from the search engines to your website.
7. Video marketing. It is easy to submit a video to YouTube and some of the other video sharing websites. Add your site's URL to the video itself, and add a link to your site in the description of the video, too. This will help generate traffic, especially if you target keywords with your video titles!
8. Paid Traffic. Pay Per Click advertising is paying for your website to be at the top of search engine results when a person types in the keywords that best describe your product or service. The higher you bid, the higher your link will be displayed in the list and you only pay when a somebody clicks on your link.
9. Employ a specialist web design / search optimisation company. They can apply methods to get your website near the top of the search page. Employing a specialist to generate traffic will cost you money however their graphics, knowledge and input will be search friendly.
10. Remain Consistent. In order to maximise the performance of all of your traffic campaigns you need to stay consistent, adding fresh new content to your websites and consistently maximising exposure so you keep the momentum going.
If you would like help getting your website ranking on page one of Google, get in touch with our team on 01708 578 015.
Here's a sobering thought. Most blogs are created, and then abandoned. Yes, most new bloggers write just one post, and then give up. This is mostly due to the weight of their own expectations.
I've been blogging for the past decade. I have literally hundreds of blogs, and while I may occasionally get bored with a blog, I've never found it difficult to write for my blogs. Writing is both relaxing, and fun for me.
In this article I'm going to give you four easy tips which will help you to write more and write well on your blog -- and have fun while you're doing it, just as I do.
1. Imagine Your Reader - Your Reader Is a Real Person
Yes, I know that you have thousands of readers, or you hope that you will have someday.
But consider that each of those readers is one person, sitting in front of a computer screen. You need to talk to that one person, and not the crowd.
Get an image in your mind of the person you're writing the blog post for. It's easiest if you imagine one of your friends. Pretend that you're writing each blog post specifically for your friend. When your readers are real people to you, it's much easier to write for them.
2. Stop Thinking About Writing As "Writing"
"Writing" can seem intimidating. You're self-conscious. The bad news is that it takes years to lose your self-consciousness when you write, but there's good new too. The good news is that you can lose your self-consciousness today if you wish. All you have to do is stop thinking about writing as being writing.
Here's an easy trick which works for many people: write each blog post as an email message. Start with a salutation, such as "Dear Fred". Then write. When you're done, delete "Dear Fred". You've just written a blog post.
3. Create a Goal and Achieve It
Whenever I create a new blog, the first thing I do is create a goal for that particular blog. For every blog I own, I have goals. As soon as I achieve a goal, I set about creating a new one.
Your goals can be as simple or as complex as you please. For example, you might have a goal to get 50 readers by the end of this month.
Once you start thinking in terms of something that you want to achieve and you have a deadline, your mind gets to work creating plans. You'll find all sorts of ideas pop into your head for how you might achieve the goal. Write the ideas down. Turn your ideas into tasks, and enter each of those tasks into your calendar. Now all you need to do is complete your tasks each day.
4. Build an Inventory of Ideas: Brainstorm Ideas for Blog Posts
Brainstorming is fun. I like to sit down with a sheet of paper, and just think about my blog and the people I'm writing it for. Then I just start writing ideas as a simple list right down the page.
It helps me if I get away from my computer when I'm brainstorming. A change of location might work for you too. Go and sit in the garden, or go and sit in a café and brainstorm there.
Be perfectly relaxed as you brainstorm, make it fun. In fact, you can use this phrase to get started brainstorming: "Wouldn't it be fun to write about________".
Try these easy tricks. They make blog writing fun.
Today the Perfect Layout team, had a great time experiencing something new. We participated in another excellent course run by Building Legacies, called ‘Live video streaming – getting camera confident’. Delivered by VeenaV, it was a lively, practical course that packed in information about the how's and why's of the process.
On many social media platforms, the use of videos is nothing new. You see them all the time and can range from animals doing the funniest things, to people on the other side of the world showing you how to catch a fish in a coconut (random – but so interesting!).
The Perfect Layout team - posing for the camera with Veena V and Simon Lewin, Building Legacies
For social and business interactions, the effectiveness of video is continuing to grow and if a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth much more. Our video blog, outlines the variety of different ways that video can be created. Just a few of the advantages of implementing this are: expanding your audience, getting your brand seen by more people, increasing the number of users to your website and gaining customer loyalty.
Streaming your video to a live audience may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but with some planning and creative thought, it could be the winning ingredient to improving your online presence.
So did we learn anything today? Absolutely! Whilst being in front of the camera isn’t ‘my thing’, the bottom line is that your marketing strategy should involve the use of video (in some shape or form) particularly if you want to reach out to a different audience.
With research, practice, planning and some creative thought – you can get your first live video posted in minutes. If we can do it – so can you!
Check out our first Facebook live stream today.
If your business doesn’t have a dedicated marketing person making sure you’re getting maximum effectiveness from your website, it’s time to get one or get clued up on how to do it yourself.
Google Analytics can deliver important insights about the performance of your website and will allow you to make refinements to your site and ultimately get more visitors and customers flowing your way.
The word analytics may sound a bit daunting and technical, but the good news is that Google have made it easy to connect and set-up. However, many small and medium sized businesses don’t take this simple step towards understanding the figures generated by their site. It’s a process that can be undertaken by anyone, but if you feel its beyond your capabilities there are plenty of people, like us, who can help you.
A bonus of tool is that it’s totally free to use. It’s often the case that free software comes with a price tag somewhere down the line, but on this rare occasion Google Analytics doesn’t. This powerful tool will enable you to learn all kinds of fascinating insights, for absolutely nothing.
Once you’ve installed it, it will allow you to see a detailed analysis of the visitors to your website and where they come from. It will also reveal what they look at, how long they stay, your most popular content, what sort of device they’re using, even age, gender and their likes & dislikes. Importantly too it will show you the “bounce rate”, which is the number of people who navigate away from your site after viewing only one page.
For owners of small and medium sized businesses this is super exciting business information which, in a nutshell, tells you if your website is working for you or not.
Other great insights include the ability to track the effectiveness of targeted social media campaigns. It will allow you to see which links have been clicked on to reach your site. You can even see which “keywords” are working for you and those that are not. Again, this is vital information that will help you to improve the use of “keywords” on the site.
Google Analytics data is seen in an easy to read dashboard, which you then drill down into to get more detailed information. One of the few disadvantages is that there is so much potential information to see, it can become very time consuming. As a result, it’s worthwhile setting up Custom Reports and specific site Goals right at the start, so you go straight to the information that you’ll need.
This blog only mentions a few of the brilliant business insights it can deliver. Why not give it a go and come back to let us know how you got on.
Get in touch with a member of the Perfect Layout team if you are ready to improve the online visibility of your business.
In online marketing, a conversion rate is the ratio of total visitors to visitors who perform desired actions. Different companies measure successful conversions based on the nature of their business and their goals.
For example, an online publisher might consider the submission of a form on a subscription page a successful conversion; whereas an online retailer might measure their conversion rate by the number of clicks to the "Add to Cart" button.
Higher conversion rates typically translate to a greater return on investment and that is why Internet businesses in every industry employ many methods to improve conversion rates.
Some of the strategies are:
Testimonials reduce risk and provide social proof. Having satisfied customers express their positive experience, either through videos or reviews, will increase trust in your business. Every claim you make should be supported by evidence.
One study found that using customer testimonials resulted in a 62 percent increase in revenue per customer. It’s the recommendation that helps encourage people to buy your product or invest in your service. They know from customer testimonials that other people have tried it.
Use them on homepages, product landing pages as well as on your email opt-in landing page. You can ask for testimonials, or spot them on social media and use grateful email messages that you get. It’s best practice to ask the sender if they wouldn’t mind letting you use some of those words on your website.
A call-to-action (CTA) is a button or link that you add to your website in order to guide your visitor and tell them what to do next. In inbound marketing, they usually lead to a landing page where the visitor can fill out a form and become a lead.
You want your CTA to grab the attention of your visitors and really entice them to click.
Show your visitors an offer that is visually appealing and contains persuasive content as well. In order to ensure your calls-to-action generate leads, you also need to remember the buyer’s journey.
If the call-to-action you’re adding to your site doesn’t fulfil the need of your visitor at the specific point in their journey, it’s not going to resonate with them, and as a result they’re unlikely to move forward.
Here are some tips to have in mind when creating calls-to-action that will generate leads:
1. Make them Action-Oriented
2. Use Persuasive Text
3. Include Strong Visuals
4. Create a Sense of Urgency
5. Make them Easy to Find
Call to action examples:
1. Call Now
2. Order Now
3. Buy Now
5. Free Demo
6. Click Here to Sign up
7. Free download
8. Get Your Free Quote
9. See all Products
10. Click here to submit
11. More Info Here
The contact form is typically the gateway to allow people to submit their information to a company. It is also the gateway for the consumer to initiate a conversion with your company. You need to keep your contact form simple.
Keeping it simple will allow for minimal perceived risk to the end user. If it takes a long time to fill out a form it could be a potential risk. Visitors could also be questioning whether they are going to get a phone call or email as well as when they’ll get a response. A good contact form will allow a user to feel that there is no risk in submitting their information.
Only include the ‘must have’ fields on your form. You can add a few more fields into your contact form to help quality or send certain requests to the correct person. But your contact form should never exceed the length of your browser. In other words, keep it above the fold.
Tell people when, how, what to expect once they fill out the contact form. Will they get a call, an email, a package in the mail, what? This will also reduce the risk that a user may feel if they know how they’re going to be contacted and by when.
In conclusion, when you pair a simple contact form with a great call to action that is clear and defined, you’re well on your way to having a higher converting landing page. Don’t forget to test your call to actions. Since some people react differently to certain phrases, always test to see which one works best for your users.
Another approach you can take to increase the conversion rate is to create a sense of urgency. For product-based businesses show how the number of stock items is reducing each time a purchase is made. For service-based businesses include time sensitive offers. This will motivate the visitors to grab the offer before it’s expired.
Website design should reflect the vision & purpose of the company. Everything used from colours to layout and images should represent your brand. Keep things simple and aesthetic. Avoid using complicated navigation menus and make sure your message is clearly written and has an impact in the first few seconds someone enters your online business space.
If you would like one of our team members to review the layout and structure of your website – call 01708 578 251 today.
In this post we look at why it’s important to maintain consistency between all the different marketing platforms you use. Big corporates like to talk about their branding and how everything that emerges from the organisation follows the same design templates. Smaller businesses should be no different; no matter what platform you’re using, your messaging and branding should be consistent.
In many cases the first engagement a new customer has with you is through your website. It is of the utmost importance that your site looks good and reflects the professionalism you want to convey. Your site, therefore, has to be well designed and easy to navigate.
Don’t forget too, that it must tell people exactly what it is you do in easy to understand language. You’d be amazed by how many sites fail this simple task.
It is also true of your digital marketing, the fact is you’re sharing with people how you can help solve a problem, they don’t always need to know exactly how you’re going to do it. Visitors consume content on websites by scanning pages, they don’t always read your carefully crafted descriptions in full. Also, they don’t linger on pages that do not tell them what they’re looking for. Sites must therefore have a logical flow and obvious navigation markers to help visitors discover the next level of information.
Nearly all businesses, no matter their size, have a logo, colours and a particular typeface that they use in all their communication. This is part of their brand identity. Customers associate that identity with the business, so don’t be tempted to move away from the brand on your website.
That brand identity should be carried through into your digital marketing. Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and your blog can all play a crucial role in attracting new business and reminding existing customers of your businesses services.
Imagine if the messages you put out on each of these platforms looked different and had a different tone of voice. Would it inspire confidence in your business? If one of those messages inspired a click through to your website which was then hard to navigate or had a completely different look, would that make you seem credible?
Luckily, it’s easy to be consistent across your website and social media platforms. With some forethought and planning, you can inspire confidence and gain credibility. It can also improve your rankings when search for online, especially true if you include links to your social media platforms on all the pages of your site.
Having a social media strategy is important for every business. It’s a method that will help engage with potential and existing customers, increase visitors to your site and keep your website refreshed as you post regular content.
Strategy, planning, branding and consistency have always been crucial to marketing campaigns, even before the digital age, but they are now more important than ever. If you’re going to compete, gain market share and grow as a business you need to be on top of these challenges.
If this all sounds too complex or time consuming to do on your own we understand how daunting it can be. Branding, web design and digital marketing strategy are our core skills, so if you need help our team of digital marketing gurus are waiting to guide you.
Email Marketing is a way to leverage the power of email. It enables you to reach customers at the same time as promoting your business. In order to run an effective email marketing campaign, you don’t need a marketing department to do things for you. Designing a professional email marketing campaign is not a complicated nor time-consuming job. It is a process that can be monitored and measured by various marketing performance metrics such as, Call To Action (CTA) s, Click through Rate, Social Profiles, and A/B testing results.
Some of the benefits of undertaking an email marketing campaign are:
Helps improve customer relationships
It is vital to have an efficient tool to communicate with your customer. Emails creates opportunities to keep people informed and engaged with your business. Sending personalised or tailored emails to your valuable customers with the latest product launch, next big event, discount vouchers or festive wishes are a few examples that any sized business can offer.
Efficient use of time and budget
Small businesses are bound by time and budget constraints. Buying an advertisement to play during a famous TV show would be nice, but it is not an option for most small business marketing budgets. Creating an email campaign, therefore, is a process that doesn’t have to cost a thing and is an efficient use of time and budget.
People do business with people they know, like, and trust. The right emails can give you the ability to build credibility with your audience by sharing helpful and informative content. The more customers can learn about (and from) your business, the more their trust will increase. A good e-mail newsletter should highlight to prospects why they should buy from your service or product.
Reach people on any device
According to Google more than 70% of people read their email on a mobile app, with most checking their email in the morning. Email marketing is one of the best tools that can be used to take advantage of the growing popularity of mobile technology.
Show your expertise
While email marketing can be about sending discounts and sale information it has another important function. Delivering unique and authoritative content, can drive traffic to your business and offer subscribers information that is both useful and enjoyable and put you in a position of local expert.
Increase website traffic without spending on Ads
Every company or e-commerce business wants to get traffic to their website. As mentioned above, email marketing campaigns can help increase traffic to your website and bring more people into your store. Sending newsletters with the latest product info or promotions can lead to higher website traffic which can ultimately lead to more sales.
General tips for your email marketing success
• Send a newsletter at least once a week
• Place at least one Call To Action button in the emails
• Personalise your emails
• Create a compelling subject line and test every subject line before delivery
• Segmenting your email list based on age, gender, demographic location, and customer
personas to send relevant emails
If you thought that GMB was shorthand for a trade union, think again! In the modern age it’s much more likely to be a reference to Google My Business.
You may feel that people “google” your business all the time, but do they always find you? Google’s free product Google My Business (GMB) is incredibly useful for helping people discover you and for putting your name on the first page of search results.
So, yes you do want to be on Google My Business.
How does GMB work?
You’ve probably seen hundreds of Google My Business listings without realizing it. They’re the short lists that pop up when you search for something generic like “cafes near me” or often when you search for a specific business name it’s the GMB listing that appears.
Below is an example of a “cafes near me” search. Each one of these businesses will have a GMB listing. You’ll see that a list of 3 names appears, this is what Google calls the “3 pack”
When you click on one of the named business it will take you through to their individual GMB listing, containing more information including a location map and often a photo, video, blog and lots of useful info.
This information can satisfy searchers, but most will then click through to your website using the button at the top of the listing, especially if you have lots of products and services. A café for example would likely have menu details on their site.
GMB is therefore essentially a widely used local business listings service, used by large and small companies. The great news is that every business can achieve a prominent listing if they get the basics right and deliver great value that customers appreciate.
The top 8 Reasons you need to be on GMB
1. Achieving prominence in search results
A listing can help your business to stand out in search results, and can help people to find your business, whether it’s online or offline. Your objective should be to get into the top 3 search results, which is where factors such as review scores are important.
2. Local search for local services
If you want to improve your chances in local search results, then a GMB listing is the key. Research shows that 46% of all searches are for local businesses while the “3 pack” format of results now appears in 93% of all local searches, so you have to be there!
3. Searching on your mobile
Most local search is now done on smart phones and GMB listings dominate mobile search results.
4. Make it easy for customers to find you
GMB listings provide a quick snapshot of your business. Maps, opening times, images and reviews all help searchers quickly decide whether they should visit you.
5. Think about your competition
If you’re annoyed that your competitors always appear in searches and you don’t, it’s because they have a GMB listing. Something as simple as that will mean they’re getting some of your business, unless you get on GMB yourself.
6. Gives you credibility
Users are accustomed to seeing these profiles, and it can lend some credibility to your business. Listings look professional and provide key information that helps people to decide whether you’re a credible business or not.
7. GMB has amazing features
Google are constantly updating their GMB features, so you can now add all kinds of fabulous elements to your listing, not just photos but videos too. Videos are a great way of educating customers and really help them make buying decisions.
As with everything on the internet it pays to keep your GMB listing fresh, so make sure to add seasonal special offers, events information, and to add regular blog posts. They all help in making you easier to find and to ensure you appear in the “3 pack”.
8. Free and Easy
Google My Business is free and easy to set up, but if you don’t have the time or feel you don’t have the skills it’s second nature to our digital whizz kids at Perfect Layout.
If you are unsure or don't have the time to set up your GMB, give us a call, we can help you get your business visible online.
We are asked all the time, why do I need a blog on my website? It probably ranks right next to, what is SEO? And believe it or not the two are related. In a nutshell the number one reason for having a blog on your website is that it drives search engine traffic.
How does it drive search engine traffic? Well, for one it enriches your content, but secondly and of equal importance it keeps your site updated.
If you think about the way Google and other search engines work, they constantly look for indexed pages. So every time you put up a blog it’s one more indexed page on your website, which means there is a greater opportunity for it to show up in search engines.
Blogging also shows search engines that your site is active and they should be checking back regularly for new content, even better it puts more keywords on your site, all of which help it rise up the page rankings; in the trade it’s known as organic SEO!
But it’s not all about SEO. Blogging is one of your best sales tools that can help increase leads and improve conversion rates.
While its pretty tacky to use your blog for a direct sales message, it is your big chance to really tell your organisation’s stories.
It will also show your credibility and to prove your authority in your market. In many ways blogging is your chance to show off and to really convey that you are an expert in your field.
We always get a real buzz when we read a blog that teaches us something new, written by someone passionate about their subject, it’s such a great opportunity to get inside the personality of a business.
Don’t make it too long though (around 500 words is optimum), but tell compelling stories in your voice which help customers and potential customers understand something about what you do, how you work, your industry or what you’ve learned on the way.
Your blog therefore is the enrichment you put into your site, the thing you do to change it from a showroom into a friendly business.
The big benefit of this rich content is that readers love to share new, fun and interesting material they’ve found online. Which means that not only do you have something to put up on your social media channels every time you blog, but so do your clients and potential clients.
Think about it, if a potential client has read your blog and has even linked to it on social media, how much more likely are they to buy from you than if all they’d seen were the static “services” or “about us” pages on your website?
You know we said its not all about SEO, but actually those social media links are great for creating inbound links to your website, something search engines absolutely love.
As you can see we practice what we preach, believing passionately that blogging is the most creative way for driving search engines to find you and to influence prospects to buy from you. If you need help with making this happen, why not get in touch on 01708 578 015 or take a look at our copywriting services for more information.
Whatever type of Brentwood business you may have - get in touch with the Perfect Layout team today to discuss your digital marketing needs.
Our affordable website services offers something for everyone and being local means that we can visit your premises, at your convenience, for a face to face meeting. If you're pushed for time - we can Skype or undertake a conference call.
Get in touch today on 01708 578 015.