4 Things You Wish You Knew About Google

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We’re very excited to have our first ever post on Business Insider this past week.  Jonathan’s article, 4 Things You Wish You Knew About Google, demystifies the way that Google determines its search results.  This article not only outlines best practices in search engine optimization, but seeks to give concrete examples that can be used by anyone developing their online presence.  You can read an excerpt of Jonathan’s article below and can read the entire article by clicking the link at the bottom of the page.

4 Things You Wish You Knew About Google

If you’re like me, the way that Google displays search results seemed pretty mystical at first. All I knew was that I wanted to rank high, but had no idea how to do it.  Google was a lot like the cool guy in class who you wished was your friend. You knew very little about him, but you knew that being friends with him would go a long way for your social life.

Google is the same with your business life: very mysterious initially, but once you get to be best friends your business can really take off. To help get that relationship started right, here is a list of the things I wish I knew about Google and how they handle search rankings.

1. Google Cares About What People Search For

Fact: Google cares a lot about its users and they want to deliver websites in their search results that are valuable for whoever is searching. One way they do this is through relevancy. If the text on your pages isn’t what people are searching for, Google isn’t going to rank your website high for that search term.

A Company Doing it Wrong: You own a clothing store that only sells short-sleeved shirts. You have the phrase “short-sleeved shirt” all over your website, but you aren’t getting anyone to your website from Google. The reason is that no one actually searches for short-sleeved shirt. Everyone just calls it a T-shirt.

What You Should Do: The question then becomes, “How do I figure out what people are searching for?” If there’s a lot of industry jargon in your business, how do you figure out what potential clients are calling the things you sell? The answer: Google’s Keyword Tool. Google’s free keyword tool will take a list of words or phrases you enter and provide suggestions for keywords you should be targeting. It does this by providing a twelve month average of the number of monthly searches performed for a word or phrase. Here’s what I would suggest you try:

  1. Create an Excel and add a list of words or phrases that relate to your business and what you sell.
  2. Ask your friends, coworkers, family, and anyone else to throw in words or phrases that relate to your business that you haven’t already included.
  3. Copy and paste that list into Google’s Keyword Tool and click the “Search” button.
  4. Look at the words or phrases listed to find the ones that have a high “Local Monthly Search” and generally lower competition.
  5. Pick one word or phrase to target for each page on your website.  Make sure the word or phrase actually relates closely to what you sell. If Google shows that the term “corduroy pants” is searched often, but you don’t sell corduroy pants, it’s probably not a good idea to include it on your website.
  6. Include that exact word or phrase at least four times on the page.

Read the Entire Article

To read the entire article as it originally appeared on Business Insider, please click here.