Website features that improve your search engine ranking
So we’ve talked about SEO and keywords, now I’m going to tell you a few easy things to add to your website that will improve your search engine ranking and encourage traffic. Not all features will be applicable for every business and every website, but it’s good to try out ones that will benefit you and your customers.
1. Maps & Local Listings
When you list your company online, you’re showing the world, especially the locals, that you’re open and ready for business. You can apply to set your own pin on Google maps with Google My Business, which is especially important for when potential customers search for “near me”. You should also consider listing your business with Bing and Yahoo. The closest business that match a customer’s search will appear, and you want yours to be at the top, pinned on the map so it’s easy to find. If you’re not a brick and mortar business and don’t want clients turning up at your door, it’s still a good idea to do this for when customers want their illustrator to be from the same town they live in or they want a local photographer to cover the village play.
Adding a map to your contact page a long with your opening hours and contact number makes it easy for potential customers to know where you are, and could encourage them to visit you or book an appointment.
2. A Blog
Blogs are a great way to consistently post relevant content to your website. And we all know that relevant content equals higher search engine ranking. Your blog posts can be made up of recipes, tips, the history about your brand, information about local events, stories about your product process etc. You can even pre-write your posts and schedule them so that your customers know when to check your site for new content and to make sure you stay relevant every week.
If you’re stuck for ideas then check what you’re writing and posting out to your website doesn’t tarnish your brand, encourage customers to go elsewhere, or project an image you cannot upkeep. For instance, if you’re a hair salon writing about a new shampoo, make sure you can link this to sales from your salon and encourage customers to come in and get a hair cut, rather than pointing them to your competitors that use the new shampoo. Look to both your online and local community to work out what they want to read about and how you can offer something they need or want, in turn driving traffic to your site and encouraging others to share your URL generating earned media.
3. Social links
Adding your social media links to your website lets customers know that you’re a real business and that there are real people behind the brand. Customers want to be able to connect with a company on a personal level, and posting on social media lets people know you’re more than just a website. This also means if they have a quick question they can tweet you, starting conversation without sending a corporate email. Having a live Instagram feed is a great way to show customers what goes on behind the website, showing them photos of upcoming product launches, a new dish on your menu or your latest branding project.
4. Customer reviews
If your customers think you’re giving great service, then make sure you’re shouting about it in the right places. Ask them if they could leave you an online review somewhere like TripAdvisor or Google. You could even add a testimonial section to your site showcasing comments from your customers about how good their time was with your company. Don’t over do it and start copying and pasting “it was great!” to show off how much your clients loved you. Ask your customers for constructive feedback like “Really tasty coffee made by friendly baristas in a family owned café”. This will generate trust from potential clients and encourage them to enquire.