Have you ever wondered if your local business is being found via local search results? The mystery of Google's algorithms is enough to drive any business owner insane. Understanding the direction of search results and how to boost your own rankings will help your business stay relevant.
Voice Search on Google
For the last few years, voice search has skyrocketed in popularity. Way back in 2015, voice search jumped from 0 to 10% of all online searches. What this means for you is the content on your website is more important than ever.
Instead of focusing on keywords, you need to be creating conversational content. Write your pages as if you are talking to the customer. When people are searching for your business on voice, they will not be talking
"Ok Google, where is the nearest pizza place to me?"
If on your website, you say,
"We are the best pizza place in town x" and you have a Google business location set up, there is a good chance of you ranking high.
Alternatively, if you don't have any content written about who you are and what you do, Google is very likely to pass you by.
Here is a test you can run to find out how you rank on search results. Stand within a block of your business and do a voice search for,
"Businesses near me".
Google should pull up a map showing all the local businesses close to your location. If yours shows up, then your online presence is ranking. If not, then you have work to do.
In 2016, the three most common voice searches were, "call mom", "navigate home", and "call dad". And their overall popularity is only growing. This evidence should be enough, voice search is taking over and it's time to make changes on your website. Make it mobile friendly and voice search optimized. Otherwise, you face being left in the dark.
"Best of" Google Search
"Best of" search results have increased over 80% in the last two years. This directly relates to the popularity of lists as a form of content creation. Look around the internet and try to find an industry without a "top 10" list of some sort. People love this kind of presentation. The information is easy to read, quick to scan, and search engines love it. People only want the best. Why would you go to a 2nd tier store when you know there is a better one just as close? Make your business stand out as the "best" option with proper content and search optimization.
Using Guest Bloggers
Using blogs and fresh content is a great way to increase your rankings. But creating new content can be a time-intensive task. If you were to hire someone, they might not care as much about the content as you do. A great solution to the blogging problem is to incorporate a guest blogger. Finding a person with an online presence of their own. The stories they create will have a built-in audience, helping to attract new viewers to your own site.
When looking for a guest blogger, find a person in the same or similar industry as yourself. Look for a blogger who has their own social media following. Ideally, this person will have more or an equal online presence as yourself. The idea of using a guest blogger is to increase the traffic to your site.
Send them an Email, asking for a blog, or a series of blogs about your business. Most of the time, bloggers will respond right away. Come to an agreement about the scope of the project and begin posting your new content.
What better way to bring in traffic to your business than to help out someone else? The more exposure and backlinks your own website can compile, the better your rankings will be.
Voice and Content for the Future of Business
Technology will continue to expand into the realm of AI and voice recognition. Ensuring your online presence and business is prepared for the changes coming will keep you at the top of search results.