Google is currently the internet’s largest search engine, processing around 5.5 billion searches per day or over 63,000 search queries per second. People rely on Google when they need information about someone or something. Some even use Google to validate the existence of things.
What if your website or business doesn’t show up on Google? Will people think it doesn’t exist? Will they think you’re hiding something or – worse – you’re a scam?
We live in an age where businesses, people, and products who can’t be Google searched just might not exist. Google is undoubtedly an important tool for customers and businesses alike. Unfortunately, many business owners (especially local businesses) aren’t doing enough to improve their visibility on the search engine. Let’s explore a few ways to earn a spot on page one of Google.
Organic Search Rankings
Organic search results appear on Google because of their relevance to the search terms. To rank high on Google through organic search results, you have to focus your efforts on
- identifying keywords
- on-page optimisation
- creating high-quality content and developing a fool-proof content strategy, and
- proper link-building & attracting high-quality links.
This is a time-consuming process which won’t happen overnight. However once you succeed you can reap the benefits for a long time.
Search Engine Marketing or PPC (Pay Per Click)
Did you know that less than 10% of traffic goes to other pages? Almost 90% of search traffic only stays on page one! This is why it’s very important for your company to get that page one visibility. Search engine marketing or PPC is a paid method to get your website on page one.
For this, you have to invest money in your ads and bid on keywords to get your ad to appear in the search results. This doesn’t mean the highest bidder gets the top 1 spot though, Google still ranks the ads based on quality. The basic formula for calculating how your ads will rank in search is Ad Rank = Bid x Quality Score.
Google Knowledge Graph
This section appears on the right side of the search results (at the very top of the SERPs) and gives the user an informative overview of their search term. For example, if it’s a location such as a restaurant, the knowledge graph shows pictures, map, location, short summary, one “did you know” trivia, and a couple of google reviews.
Google Images and Videos
Another way to get on the first page of Google is through images. For your image to get the first-page spot, it has to be relevant, of good quality and optimised starting from the alt tag, to the file name and caption. You can also get to page 1 through videos. And just like in images, your videos need to be optimised starting from its title, description, and video tag.
People Also Ask Section
You can also get your website on page 1 through this section. Go to google search now and type anything. When you scroll down (often this is located in the middle of the page), you can see the “People also ask” section where questions related to your search are shown. Content that is included here is relevant and informative.
In order for your business to be seen on google maps, you have to verify its location and update its hours and information. Once verified, your business can get to page 1 depending on the relevance, distance, and prominence (reviews & positive ratings) of your business.
Adwords’ Shopping Ads
One of the newest ad formats in Adwords, shopping ads are a great way to target customers and advertise your products on the first page of Google. Similar to text ads, shopping ads are a PPC method of advertising where you pay only when someone clicks on your link. However, instead of text, users are shown photos of your products including its price, product name, and website
Featured snippets are summaries of answers from a search query which are displayed on top of google search results. Usually, these text snippets are extracted from a webpage that has the most relevant and high-quality result.
As a search engine, Google is a powerful tool that we can all use to our advantage. Businesses who are not doing anything to improve their search engine visibility are missing a lot of opportunities on a daily basis.
The points presented above are just some of the ways you can gain a spot on the first page of Google search results. However, there are still a lot of options that we, marketers, have yet to explore and discover in the field of SEO. The internet is ever-changing and everyday new things happen in the web. By keeping up-to-date to trends and just being relevant, you can get your brand on top of the search engine and save years of fruitless efforts.