It is a time honoured problem for businesses throughout the world. No matter how important your services or products may be, the inability of customers to find you will ensure that your business never takes off.

Changing Times

Advertising used to be the most effective method of promoting your business to potential customers but the rise of the internet means that traditional advertising can be a SEOlittle redundant now due to the fact that it is easier than ever before for potential customers to track down the services and products they require through their computers, smart phones and tablets.

Traditional marketing has been replaced by online marketing and this is beginning to evolve quickly. Online marketing relies in large part on search engine optimisation (SEO) but this is far more complex than it used to be. Whereas stuffing anchor text and grabbing links from as many sites as possible used to work like a dream, following this route now will quickly get you in Google’s bad books!

Don’t Skip Ahead

It’s amazing how many SEO providers are prepared to look way into the distance when implementing SEO strategies and at the same time forget to cover the essential basics.

Few bits of information are more fundamental to any business than its name, address and phone number (NAP) and these play a crucial role in SEO and in particular ‘Local SEO’. Consistency is the key word here, both on your website and wherever your business is mentioned on the web.

Please Note – If your NAP details differ from place to place, you’ll not only confuse potential customers, but search engines as well.

Consistency of Information

It’s a constant source of amazement for us how many businesses have conflicting pieces of information on their website.

As we have just stated, consistency is key and making sure that your NAP is consistent throughout your website is absolutely essential.

For example, it may be that your business has changed its telephone number or location and haven’t fully updated all your information, or that a web designer made a mistake when putting your site together.

Whatever the reason, you can be certain that we will take all of the time needed to make sure that all of the NAP information on your website is correct.

Please Note – Even something as small as a missing apostrophe could confuse a search engine.

Google Plus Business Pages

Have you ever noticed that some of the search results on Google look a little different to others? Google often gives preference to listings which are linked to a Google Plus business page and will display these at the top of their search results.

The image below highlights the importance of tapping into Google Plus business pages and shows how they can help your listing to stand out from the crowd by showing additional information drawn from your G+ page.

Google-Maps-Listing

Creating Your Page

Creating your page is very similar to any other business citation submission (we’ll be adding more about this soon) but below we have highlighted a couple of tips to help you along the way.

No. 1 – Make sure that your NAP information right – as already stated, this is absolutely essential.

No. 2 – Ensure that you tell Google whether you serve customers at their address (e.g. a gardener or a plumber) at provide your services at your address (e.g. a pub or restaurant). This information will be used by Google to display how your business is displayed on Google maps. If you have a physical shop that customers can visit, then you’ll get a pin. If you deliver your goods/services remotely, then Google will display your service area.

Once you’ve entered this information, a Google + Business page will automatically be created for your company. You’ll also be asked to verify your address. This is done by sending you a postcard which contains a verification code which you enter into the Google + dashboard once it arrives and results in the account being fully activated.

There is a whole host of additional information which can be added to your listing and if you would like to find out more, give us a call to see how we can help to maximise your online exposure.