If you work for or run your own small business, you likely have growing your business and increasing your brand visibility high on your priority list. Now look way, way down that list; I bet SEO and PPC are buried in the we’ll-get-to-it-at-some-point column. It may seem daunting and like you will never have time to devote to it, but it’s on your radar. Here are a few things to consider to help you get a jump start on increasing brand visibility and traffic from Google:
Be sure to update your title and meta description tags so that you have a little more control over the text that is displayed for your site’s results. If you don’t set them, Google will pull something it deems relevant, which could indeed be relevant or end up being something like part of your legal disclaimer or a photo caption, which isn’t particularly helpful for searchers.
Not only do you want to customize your search result, but you want to show more information with it if possible. One way to do this is through marking up some information on your site in order to show rich snippets. These snippets will draw more eyes to your result and provide searchers with more information about your business, making them more likely to click through on your result rather than a competitor’s.
Some example information would include: recipe details or a photo, price, availability, reviews, ratings, etc. It’s a quick way to tell searchers you have what they are looking for.
With the addition of a few bits of code to your site, you can essentially tell Google to include snippets of information in the Knowledge Graph. Information in this section includes the following: contact phone numbers, social media profiles, logos, etc. A well-rounded knowledge graph will help your business stand out and own more real estate on SERPs for brand searches.
Even if you don’t have much funding planned for advertising, you’ll want to consider a small budget for brand searches. It helps build credibility by showing in organic as well as paid results, and it tends to add incremental traffic from organic (as opposed to cannibalizing organic traffic like many people assume). This will also help establish yourself among those trying to compete with you on your own brand keywords and push down other organic listings down the page, helping you to own that top search results view.
Be sure to monitor for other advertisers using your trademarks when they shouldn’t be. For those that are using your trademarks in their ads, be sure to read up on Google AdWords’ Trademark Policies to learn what’s okay, what isn’t and what you can do about it. Sometimes it will be deemed acceptable in instances when an advertiser is a reseller or a partner. Just be sure to know the landscape and look into issues that seem inappropriate.
There are many other aspects of paid search and search engine optimization to consider when trying to grow your business and improve your bottom line, but these tips should help you get started in terms of owning your brand on SERPs.
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