Question: What practicable/applicable things can I do to make my business rank higher in Google searches?
Question by: Jodi C.
Create Evergreen Content
"You'll want your content to take the top slots for your name and various keywords and phrases, so you'll want to have high-quality, authoritative content. The best way to make sure your content is seen this way to is create content that is forever useful, not trendy and disposable. Create content that people will be reading ten years from now, and you'll be getting linkbacks for a decade."
Audit Your Online Profiles
"Take a few minutes to log into each of your company's online profiles. Is the biography updated? More importantly, is your website's URL listed somewhere? The incoming links from these profiles may not weigh too much in Google's mysterious algorithm, but you'll be surprised what it can do if you have more than a handful of accounts online."
Think Like Your Customer Types
"Think about what your ideal clients and customers might be typing into Google, and then find out if your hunch is right by looking keywords up in Google's free Keyword Tool. Keep in mind that 25 percent of keywords have never been typed in before, but you'll want to aim for popular keywords with low competition if you can. Then write content around these keywords and learn to optimize."
Hire an SEO Expert
"I suggest hiring a search engine optimization company or freelance specialist to develop an effective strategy to improve your rankings. The Google Panda update has made the SEO space even more challenging to produce results, so I suggest out-sourcing this task to the professionals. Look for individuals or companies with proven track records and monitor their biweekly reports closely."
Content Is King, Links Are Queen
"Yes, creating good content is very important to make your business rank higher in Google, but links are even more important. Google loves links, especially those from other relevant, authority websites. Join any and all industry associations, guest blog with a link back to your website and submit your site to any relevant directories to grow your backlink profile and your searches."
Bust Out the Camera
"Video is such a huge thing now for business owners. Not only does it give your company personality, but it can also be spread across networks while linking back to your site. Create great videos filled with information people can share and then repeat. Now, videos can be distributed across multiple platforms from one single platform, causing Google to love you."
Colleges and Universities
"The biggest SEO secret is that when .edu sites link to your website, it gives you a higher Google ranking. Contact colleges and universities and find a reason for them to link to your site, by running a special internship opportunity, for example."
Update Your Site Frequently
"The more often you update your site, the more important Google thinks it is. If you can publish content to your blog every day, Google will start to recognize you as a great source of information for whatever your keywords are. With every blog post, you have another chance at ranking for new search terms, so each article increases the odds of your site being found."
Use the Right Keywords
"Two effective ways of increasing your SEO rank are tagging articles and keyword analysis. You want to make sure your headlines are descriptive and are what somebody would actually search for. You should also choose keywords that people are going to look for -- so imagine yourself as a searcher."
Move Away From Flash
"Many small businesses, especially restaurants and bars, use Flash for their sites because it's easy to launch, looks good and is fairly cheap. While the sites might look decent they rank really poorly in Google (without doing some tricks). Change your Flash-based site to WordPress or another platform and you'll rocket up the search engine rankings."
Take Advantage of Local Search
"Are you a local business? Have you claimed your listing on Google, Yahoo! and Bing? If not, stop reading this article now and go claim your business listings immediately! I've seen a huge jump in traffic for businesses by simply claiming and filling out all the fields on these local profiles. The future of search is personalized, local results, and these valuable profiles are often overlooked."
How to Read Their Minds
"The biggest mistake people make in trying to rank high in Google is having no clue what people are actually typing into search engines to find you. An easy way to find this out is to go to the Google homepage and slowly start typing in your phrases. You'll notice Google suggested searches come up. Use those exact phrases in your titles. That's what people want, give it to them."
The Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC) is an invite-only nonprofit organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. The YEC recently published #FixYoungAmerica: How to Rebuild Our Economy and Put Young Americans Back to Work (for Good), a book of 30+ proven solutions to help end youth unemployment.