How we used Google to get customers to a business they didn't know existed.
What we learned and how we would repeat our success with fewer mistakes.
Sometimes even with a world of knowledge, it's still entirely possible to make rookie mistakes. Getting our first top 10 started out rough, but once we had our recipe down. We knew it was a game.
Early on, I was absorbing and implementing all types of SEO tips and tricks I could find online to make my website more appealing and attractive to searchers.
I learned practices that weren't ideal for ranking and thankfully never implemented those "Black hat" SEO techniques( Tricks that have a chance of getting your website penalized).
So what exactly did I do to continuously rank high enough to gain clients to our business? Let's find out
Quick Dictionary For Non-Nerds:
ALT Text = Name of a picture (not a description)
Page Title = Name of the tab you have open
Page Description = The description of that tab.
H1 & H2 Tags = The most important headers on your web page to the least important.
Anything else I didn't explain here I will explain in the copy.
Ready to learn? Let's go baby!
Ranking for valuable "search terms" The first goal.
Like many other local businesses, there's really no strong competition when it comes to Local Google search result presence, in most industries.
But that doesn't mean there is NO competition at all. A great action plan always includes having incoming customers as an end goal. Not just competing against other businesses, but it just goes hand in hand.
A search term is what someone would type on Google to find something they need. Keyword research is the action of researching these words.
We started out with some keyword research that includes our "Service + City" combo.
To find out what exact services we would target we just asked the business owner what their favorite service to provide was and what they would like the most.
For this example today we'll use a Flooring company that wants more "Resin flooring jobs in Cleveland" as the targeted service.
Something to note about our chosen keyword is, that it's at least 4 words long, and it's very specific. Not general i.e "Flooring in Cleveland"
Creating our custom pages.
Once we knew what our target keyword plus location combo was, we went on to create pages that targeted searchers' intent (what someone wants to find when they're typing something) in this instance our target keyword was "Resin flooring in Cleveland"
We started with a page that targets our exact keyword and then added 2 to 3 more pages relevant to the same topic such as "Resin flooring near the city of Cleveland" or "The price for resin flooring in Cleveland"
The biggest thing to display in our pages was the business's expertise, authoritativeness on the topic, and a reason for the searcher to trust them. (Also known as E.A.T.)
Fairly easy to do when you're a licensed professional.
Aside from that, we made sure to have just one main H1 tag (it's a font size for your main header), and the rest of the H2s and below (Second header, third header, and below).
Another thing we did custom to each page was, a custom URL (the exact link in your website navigation when looking at a web page example: "facebook.com/naturewaymarketing" is the URL to our Facebook page)
The custom URL included our keyword without looking generic and added to the overall purpose of the page.
So in our instance, it would be example.com/resin-flooring-jobs-Cleveland
The page content.
We made sure to highlight the fact the searcher was dealing with a licensed professional in the page title, as well as page descriptions and on the actual page content.
Our content was usually about 1000 words sometimes more sometimes less and we made sure to highlight the fact that we were conveniently located near the city of Cleveland to match the searchers' intent.
After completing these steps, we added a few pictures to show the work or service completed between paragraphs relevant to the page we were creating. Pictures may be a combination of your work, social media, business location, or even relevant stock images, etc.
Also for ALT text purposes to rank in image search.
Tracking the progress.
To track our progress, we used a few different tools. First, Google Keyword Tool / Ubersuggest validated our idea that there was actual search volume for our chosen keyword.
Second, Google Search Console allowed us to track the daily progress of our work by showing us impressions and clicks received for specific terms and they're frequently updated.
Third, we used the Neil Patel Tool Ubersuggest once again to track our ranking and simultaneously used Google search, to make sure the rankings were actually accurate which it was 100% of the time.
The results most definitely didn't happen overnight. But to my surprise, it happened quicker than I expected.
Within 2 weeks we had moved to high page 2, normally spots 11-20.
After a full month and a half went by we reached low on page 1, and stuck there for a while, now when this would happen, we would normally check our impressions to see if it's rising, and as long as it was going up, we'd let it play out.
Anytime our impressions went down for more than a day, or our rankings went down from 13 to 19 we would add more to our content, and see if there was room to optimize or room to improve.
If we find something, we apply, if we see no need to change it, we leave things as is because sometimes Google just won't let you get too far too fast. ( According to Google yes Google, it can take anywhere from 4 months to a full year to see results - Click HERE to see the post.)
Closing in on 2 months we notice we started entering page one, but not staying in. We were spot 9-12 one day and 12-15 the next for our our search terms.
I will admit, I only celebrate when I get to the top 3 specifically 1st. so those spots 4-10 aren't much for me to be happy for but it is a celebration in the map pack especially if your business has great reviews. (Map pack shows business's top 3 on Google for search terms)
At this point, I figure that the content is relevant, the impressions are rising and even though clicks aren't coming in yet the business owner is claiming to be getting a ton of new calls from people who sound nothing like the usual clientele, which gave away the fact that this new traffic must be from a new source...
It was working...
But the clicks weren't yet showing on the backend to me.
I was only seeing late page one results from my end. After month 3 we moved closer to the top 5 spot and by the start of month 4 we successfully closed in on the top 3 rankings for a few of our search terms, we hovered in and out from position 1 - 3 day by day.
The benefit to the business
At this point, we installed call tracking through Google, which caught a couple of dozen calls over the 5 months of progress.
The owner of the business was ecstatic about the flow of new clients, and the results were also showing in the backend.
It's like a beautiful ending, except when it comes to this type of work...
If you snooze too long, you'll lose your spot. 😵
So we'll continue to add page content and different search terms that target similar pages to the main keyword we'd like to lead.
There's a tremendous amount of time and effort that goes into Search Engine Optimization and it's not something you can do with one single tool.
You have to test, see results, apply changes, and repeat before you see the fruit of your labor.
Only then can you grasp how all of the separate parts flow together like one body.
I obviously couldn't fit 100% of the steps I took otherwise you may have never reached this ending. But I do give away what I feel were some of the most important parts of increasing rankings.
I'll dive deeper into what each specific part consisted of in future posts. Until then, get those numbers up and find your #Numbers2Know
I hope you find some value from this and gain the knowledge you need to implement things on your own website.
Be patient with your progress while making small and not-so-major tweaks to your pages.
Knowing this balance can be key to the success of your website. Don't assume it's doing good and always keep your eyes on your charts.
Create new content pages if it'll help you reach that ultimate keyword and write things in your own words while maintaining relevancy to the specific landing page.
I'm working on a new project with this tactic, I'll use my own website and have my own custom pictures when that project is completed, some of you probably think this is a lot of info, but this is just scratching the surface. So be ready 😁
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June 15, 2022