Each month about 24,000 business owners and entrepreneurs ask how they can get their business or website on Google. Not only is it a popular question “to Google” but also it’s a question without a single simple answer.
Google AdWords is one way to get your business on Google.
What Is It?
Google AdWords is paid advertising. A click on your ad can lead to your website or a landing page you created.
How Google AdWords Works
You (or your marketing consultant) write the ads and you bid on keywords related to the ad. The more popular the keyword and the more competition for the keyword, the more you’ll pay when someone clicks on your ad. The cost for click can range greatly from less than a dollar up to $60 or more a click.
The only time you have to pay for the ad is when someone clicks on it. Google tracks the number of total clicks and the cost per click each month. You are billed for that clicking—whether or not it results in a lead or prospect.
Pros and Cons of Google AdWords
If you’re willing to pay more than your competitors, you may get that coveted first spot on the Google search engine results page (SERP). If so, your ad on the SERP would appear prominently whenever someone searches the keyword or phrase you bought. You’ll get visibility—regardless if someone clicks on your ad. If they don’t click, you don’t have to pay.
Because nearly all businesses are buying ads, the first three to five listings on a page are often advertising. To get seen, you may find it necessary to buy ads.
Google Business Profile is a second way to get your business on Google.
What Is It?
Google Business Profile, formerly known as Google My Business, is a Google listing for local businesses. It includes a map, reviews, and your NAP (name, address, and phone number). You can post updates, special offers, events, photos, and much more on your Google Business Profile.
How Google Business Profile Works
You or your marketing consultant can easily set up a Google Business Profile (GBP) page through Google. Next, you’ll need to verify that your information is correct.
Pros and Cons of Google Business Profile
The listing is free! What’s more, it’s almost always included in any search of your company’s name. Be sure that your NAP on your website matches exactly with the Google Business Profile listing. This is especially important if your company has a name that could easily be confused with others.
Additionally, you want to avoid duplicate listings. Moreover, if your business moves, you’ll want to be sure to update your listing to the current, most accurate address. It is also very helpful to obtain positive, legitimate reviews. Five-star ratings are the best.
For a generic search term, your profile may appear in a local pack with other businesses. It’s important to be shown in these top three or four businesses in the local pack, because users rarely click beyond those first profiles.
Your website content is a third way to get your business on Google.
What Is It?
After Google lists the Google AdWords paid advertising and the Google Business Profile page, it next lists websites that are relevant to the “Googler’s” keyword search. These results are called organic listings.
How Organic Search Engine Results Work
If you follow best practices for making and optimizing your website, you’ll appear in the search engine results–perhaps more than once. The more popular and unique your content is with readers, and the more interesting information your site features, the more likely you are to be featured prominently (on page 1 in the results.) You can also apply additional tactics for driving traffic to your website. Submitting your live, completed website to Google can also help ensure that Google crawls and indexes your pages.
Pros and Cons of Organic Search
Organic search is a great long-term play for any company. The longer your site is up, the better your content, and the more your site is optimized, the better you’ll fair. As with Google AdWords, the competition is fierce, but great content can not only establish your reputation as a thought leader in your industry but also drive leads and revenue.
The best time to optimize your website is when you start to build it. Once you’re established, it’s relatively inexpensive to maintain your well-optimized site. Investing in a blog can also help to keep your content fresh.
Social media is a fourth way to get your business on Google.
What Is it?
Well-optimized company social media pages, for example on YouTube, Facebook, or LinkedIn, can appear in the SERP.
How Social Media Sites Appear on Google
Regular participation on your well-optimized (strategically completed) social media pages, will allow your business to appear in the search engine results pages (SERPs).
Pros and Cons of Social Media
When it comes to social media, you can get more visibility with little investment. You’ll want to be sure that you fully complete all aspects of your profile.
Also, be sure your target audience is on the social media channel you choose. For example, if you are targeting a high school-educated, rural audience, you may not want to choose LinkedIn as your social media channel of choice.
Instead, choose just one or two social channels and use them well, rather than trying to be all things to all people. Social media can require a lot of time and energy. And an abandoned social media site reflects poorly on your company.
Local search engine optimization (SEO) strategies used to be a fifth way to get on Google.
What is local SEO?
Local SEO is a series of best practices that allow your brick-and-mortar store or local service (eg, electrician in the Chicago area) to appear on Google and other search engines.
How Local SEO works?
Your marketing consultant submits your website and relevant business information to a variety of data aggregators and publishers. Data aggregators distribute your business information to search engines (besides Google), car navigation systems, Apple Maps, Google Maps and more. Publishers, such as Apple, Bing, Facebook Place Tips, Foursquare, Google and Yelp help your site to appear in Google and other SERPs.
Pros and Cons
Local SEO requires the expertise of a marketing consultant (or a very knowledgeable and motivated business owner) to get the job done. You’ll want to be sure to avoid duplicate content or listings.
Furthermore, be sure to use the accurate and precise NAP for consistent branding. Your local SEO would only need to be redone as new aggregators, publishers or amplifiers become available or if your business location moves.
In 2023, Google reported that these directory listings are not ranking factors. However, they can sometimes afford you more real estate on a search page.
Getting Your Ecommerce Site on Google
Google has specific guides to help get your ecommerce site on Google. Read more at “How to Pay Less for Ecommerce Traffic: Google’s Roadmap“
In summary, there are many ways to “get your business on Google.” A multidimensional approach that incorporates AdWords, Google My Business, SEO and content strategies, Social Media and local SEO is the most effective. Help your business get on Google, grow and prosper with the right strategic approaches.
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