Step 11 – Local SEO: Tell Search Engines about Your Website

12 Part Series for a Small Business Website

Once your website is launched and secured, ensuring it’s visible to search engines is crucial for local customers to find you. Given that Google accounts for nearly 90% of all online searches in North America, it’s vital to “tell” Google about your website and follow their guidelines for website owners.

Google Search Console for Your Small Business Website

Google Search Console is a free service allowing small business website owners to monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot their site’s presence in Google Search results. Google continuously “crawls” the internet and indexes new web pages or changes to existing web pages. While you don’t need to register your site on Search Console to be included in Google Search results, doing so can help you better understand and improve how Google sees your site.

Benefits of Using Google Search Console:

  • Monitor website performance in search results
  • Identify and fix issues like server errors, site load issues, and security threats
  • Submit your Sitemap to Google for efficient indexing
  • Gain insights into how Google views your site and improve it accordingly

Submit Your Sitemap to Google

Registering your site on Google Search Console and submitting your Sitemap is considered a best practice. This step allows you to:

  • Inform Google about the structure of your website.
  • Ensure any problems that Google may encounter are promptly addressed.

Regular monitoring of Google Search Console can keep you informed about potential issues and ensure that any website maintenance or adjustments are reflected smoothly in search performance.

Basic SEO Practices

An overview of SEO and SEO tools is beyond the scope of this blog post, but here are some fundamental steps to help search engines understand your business:

  • Use the Right Keywords: Describe your services and products using relevant keywords.
  • Accurate Information: Make sure your business name, address, phone number, and hours of operation are accurately reflected on your website.
  • Timely Updates: Update your website information promptly if anything changes.

Good SEO practices ensure that search engines understand the “truth” about your business. When launching a new website for a client, we focus heavily on conveying accurate business information to Google and other search engines.

Avoid “Black-Hat” Tactics

Steer clear of tactics that attempt to trick search engines into ranking your website higher, such as keyword stuffing, excessive link building, or buying links. If someone promises they can get you to the top of Google search results instantly, it’s likely too good to be true.

A Guiding Principle:

When considering an SEO tool or tactic, ask yourself, “Is this something that search engines like Google or Bing would want us to do to further their understanding of this business?” If the answer is “No,” avoid it. For example, adding links from hundreds of unrelated, low-quality websites is not recommended.

Following these steps will help ensure that your small business website is visible to search engines and easily found by local customers. By adhering to Google’s guidelines and focusing on good SEO practices, you can enhance your online presence and drive more traffic to your site.

Simple Website Service

Simple Website Service is an affordable, turn-key, custom professional website service for small business owners. Our website design solution comes with full ongoing support for updates, maintenance, security and backup. Our customers speak with a REAL person. With over 100 customers, our singular focus allows us to keep costs down for our customers. Small business websites are ALL we do. For over 17 years, we’ve listened to our customers – small business owners who need help creating professional websites that truly represent their brand. But, traditional options are expensive and time consuming while templated do-it-yourself solutions fail to capture the essence of what makes their businesses unique. That’s why we created Simple Website Service for small business owners who don’t have the time to wade through the complexities of a web project.

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