What do you know about digital marketing? When you type a word or phrase into a search engine, do you know how it gathers and ranks the results?
You need to have a working knowledge of digital marketing in order to succeed in today’s business world. You can outsource your digital marketing to an agency, but you need to at least understand the basics so you know what to look for during the hiring process.
The History of Search Engines
When you think of search engines today, Google is probably the first that comes to mind. Google wasn’t always the dominant player, though. Before Google launched, there were search engines like AskJeeves.com.
The first search engines appeared on the scene in the early ‘90s. They were massive indexes of websites, which were categorized by keywords. Kind of like a digital Dewey decimal system.
Google became the dominant search engine around the year 2000 and since grown into a household name around the globe. “Googling” is now a verb associated with finding information online.
Success in the digital world is all about getting your business’ website to rank on the first page of Google. Let’s talk about how to make this happen.
How Google Works ( & How to Make it Work for You)
Google became the dominant search engine because they developed the best algorithm for providing searchers with answers to their queries.
The best way to organically rank a website on Google is to provide content that answers the common questions of your target audience.
The overall goal of a search engine is to answer queries as efficiently as possible. If you create content that answers specific questions, you make Google’s job easier.
Start by making a list of 5-7 questions your target customer might ask. Once you have this list, create content that answers these questions. This gives you your starter content. If you expand this brainstorm list to 100 questions, you’ll have everything you need for a long-term content strategy.
Make note of the words and phrases that have popped up in multiple questions. These will be your keywords. This process takes time and dedication. You will most likely rank for long-tail keywords first. Here’s an example of long-tail keywords.
Say you’re in the dry cleaning business. One question you came up with in your brainstorm is “ What are the best Dry Cleaners in Florida?”
“Drycleaners” would be a regular Keyword. “ Best dry cleaners in Florida” would be a long-tail keyword. Fewer people search long-tail keywords, but these longer keywords give you much more targeted traffic.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed, there’s good news. Once you rank on the first page for one keyword, it is easier to rank for related keywords and phrases.
Everything we covered in this article falls under on-page optimization. Part 2 of this 3-part series covers off-page optimization.
Do you need help turning your website into a lead generation machine? Schedule a business coaching session with Arman to get started.