4 Ways To Increase Your Rankings in Google & Improve Your Online Exposure

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1 4 Ways To Increase Your Rankings in Google & Improve Your Online Exposure Written by Bobby Holland all rights reserved Copyright: Bipper Media *** Note: you DO NOT want to miss the last section (reason #4) where I talk about the power of structured data and the impact it can have on your business -- but you need to read from the beginning for it all to make sense! Getting your website into the top rankings in Google Getting your website into the top search results in Google - what I typically refer to as above the fold (meaning, what people see on their computer screens or mobile devices before having to scroll down the page) can have a tremendous impact on your business. In fact, being found in the top search results can drive more traffic, leads, and sales for your business more effectively than any other form of advertising! Why? you might ask The answer is simple! Regardless of the industry or market location, statistics show that 97% of initial inquiries into a business, product, or service begins with someone searching in Google. These numbers can be even higher in local metro areas as people look for local businesses. Because an overwhelming majority of your future customers are turning to Google first to conduct research, it s absolutely imperative that your business and brand be found at the top of those search results. Take these statistics one step further and you find that a whopping 87% of people who search in Google will only click on one of the top 3 search results. With numbers like this, I m sure you d agree that being found in the top search results in Google can have a positive impact on your bottom line!

2 Answering some tough questions about your website s current rankings in Google... But the question is, how do you get your website into the top 3 search results in Google? After all, I AM NOT talking about the paid search results in Google (those yellow ish sections you see at the top and sides of the organic search results)... When I say the top 3, I m talking about the natural search results - the search results that are directly below the paid ads at the top. *DID YOU KNOW: Did you know that ads in Google search only reach the 20th percentile of searchers? That means, only 2 out of 10, or 20 out of 100, or 200 out of 1,000 people will ever click on the ads in Google what this also means is that the 80th percentile (the overwhelming majority of searchers) are clicking on the organic (non-ads) search results - and everything I m talking about in this book will help you get exposure and rankings in those natural / organic search results. The goal is to get your business directly in front of the overwhelming majority of people searching for your products and services. For any given search query, there can only be one website ranked #1. That might as well be you... and guess what, it CAN be you! But before your website shoots to the top search results, we have to god and start peeling back the data and code, and look at the current structure of key elements within your site that carry the most weight in determining your rankings in Google. And to start with, we are going to be looking at elements such as your meta data (title, description, alt tags, etc ), and onsite content. Ready to get started? I hope so because the impact on your business can be dramatic! Below are 3 reasons why your Google rankings currently stink, and how you can fix these problems and rise to the #1 position in Google. Let s get started with what I believe to be the single most important element for any website attempting to reach the #1 position on Google - and that is your title (or <h1> title tag) within the meta data of your website. Reason #1: Lack of Title Tag Optimization The title tag is a one line description of what any given web page is about - this also includes the homepage of your website. Think of the title tag, as the name suggests, as the title of a web (sounds obvious, right?)!

3 It is widely believed that the title tag (also called the <H1> tag) is the single most important factor influencing Google s algorithm in deciding what pages rank first in the search results. I know, I know I hear all the SEO types out there already rattling their sabers because they believe that backlinks are single most important factor. But be careful with this mindset because Google has refined their algorithm to such a degree that even a scent of artificial or manual backlinking to a site can send your rankings spiraling off into no-mans-land never to return to the front page of Google. Backlinks are important yes - but you can actually cause an inverse effect on your rankings if you go out and start building backlinks manually. And what I mean by this is - you can actually cause your site to drop in the search results by building low quality links, from low quality sites, back to your website. The best way to build backlinks to your website - and then I ll move on and get off my backlink soapbox - is to create great content that other people actually want to share. This causes you to build links naturally to your site and they carry exponentially more influence in Google s ranking algorithm But I digress let s get back to the title tag and how you can optimize it to influence Google and your rankings! Here s how you can see the title tag of websites directly in Google s search results --- notice in the image of the search results below and the blue words that are clickable. These clickable blue words are actually the title tag (or <h1> tag) for each web page you see in Google s search results.

4 ** TRY IT YOURSELF: Just go to Google and search any keyword phrase > scroll down through the search results > then notice the blue part of the search results that are clickable - these blue clickable words are the title tags / <h1> tags for each of these web pages. Now that we know what a title tag is, let s take a look at why the title tags in your website stink and then I ll show you how to fix them! Why your title tag is struggling Most website owners don t realize the importance of the title tag in their individual web pages. As such, they fail to optimize their title tags with their most profitable, and most searched, keyword phrases - what I like to call targeted keyword phrases. What are targeted keyword phrases? Targeted keyword phrases are the phrases that are determined to be the most profitable phrases to go after for any given business. Targeted keyword phrases are the ones identified, through keyword research, as the ones people are actually typing into Google as they search for your products and services.

5 These keyword phrases are GOLD to you and your business, and you want to do everything you can to interject these phrases into the title tag of your targeted web page! For example: let s say you are a carpet cleaner in Atlanta, Georgia, and perhaps you also service other surrounding suburbs such as Marietta and Roswell. Here s an example of a title tag gone wrong: Bad title tag: Great Carpet Cleaning, Call Bob Now To Get Best Carpet Cleaning Can you spot the problem with this title tag? That s right - no where within the title tag do they reference the city within which they are providing carpet cleaning services. In fact, if I was this carpet cleaner, I would actually build a separate page within my site for each major city where I provide carpet cleaning. How To FIx Your Title Tags! If you have title tags that are otherwise unstructured and lacking optimization, here s one way to fix them again, using the carpet cleaning business above as the example. A much better title tag: Best Carpet Cleaning in Atlanta, Ga - Call Now For Atlanta Carpet Cleaning Services This is a more structured and authoritative title tag for the carpet cleaning business in Atlanta because: 1. I ve now included the word Atlanta in the title tag: it s critically important, especially for locally owned businesses, to include the city name / metro area in the title itself. Including the city name in the title tag tells Google that your business not only provides carpet cleaning services, but that your service area is specifically the Atlanta market area. 2. Recurrence of keyword phrase: I ve duplicated, only once, the most profitable keyword phrase within the title tag so that it s a near exact match to the most popular phrase people type into Google search. This is a strategy you want to use with caution, making sure you don t overdo the recurrence or instances of your targeted keyword phrases. However, using the targeted phrase in some sort of

6 variation a second time in the title tag should be fine. Notice how I included the targeted keyword phrase with what I call phrase variations - basically including the targeted phrase in a way so as to create variation within the context of the title tag. Applying this title tag strategy to all of your targeted pages within your site is a powerful way to enhance your exposure in Google search. In some cases, restructuring the title tag has allowed our clients to rise from no where to the #1 search result in Google. Now this isn t going to be the case for everyone, especially if your business operates in a hyper-competitive environment (i.e. personal injury lawyers), but even in those competitive markets, this is really the best place to start with your optimization efforts. A common title tag mistake: One common mistake people make is to try to fit multiple products or services into one title tag. If, for example, I m the carpet cleaner in Atlanta and I service Atlanta, Marietta, and Roswell, then I will want to create a separate page for each of those cities - as opposed to cramming all three cities into one page. Reason #2: Lack of Description Tag Optimization Why your description tag is struggling... Most people don t realize how important the description tag is for ranking in Google. It s sort of an obscure tag within the overall structure of your website, and is really only most visible directly in the search results in Google. Let s take a quick look and see what I m talking about here... The description tag of any given web page can be found underneath the title tag in Google s search results - here s what the description tag looks like:

7 ** NOTE: If the description tag is not implemented (purposely created) in a web page, then Google uses the content on the page as the source for presenting the description tag in the search results. The description tag resides within the header code of every single web page and is the snippet of small black font you see in Google search results directly underneath the title tag (see image above). In the same context as the title tag discussion above, description tags can carry a lot of weight in creating consistency and authority for your targeted keyword phrases when the phrase is actually represented in the description tag itself. Keeping with the example of the carpet cleaner in Atlanta, let me show you a well structured and highly optimized description tag: Fixing your description tags: For the best carpet cleaning in Atlanta, Ga., call Bob , highest rated Atlanta carpet cleaner and serving metro Atlanta since Now let s dissect this description tag a bit and see what s going on... Notice the consistency of the targeted keyword phrase carpet cleaning in Atlanta from the title tag (or <h1> tag) to the description tag. Ensuring that the targeted keyword phrase is represented in the title tag, and then duplicated in the description tag, is one of those magic bullets that can - in a lot of cases - be enough to elevate you onto the front page of Google. This is especially true, and can have an even more profound impact on the rankings for locally targeted businesses. ** NOTE: this is not always the case and in hyper competitive markets such as personal injury lawyers, you have to do more than just optimize your description tag to reach the front page of Google but stay tuned because I ll cover those details in my next ebook! Bringing The Tags Together Title Tag & Description Tags: what it looks like when they work in unison?

8 So that you can see exactly what I m talking about by creating consistency between the title tag and description tag, let me give you an example of the two tags together: title: Best Carpet Cleaning in Atlanta, Ga - Call Now For Atlanta Carpet Cleaning Services description: For the best carpet cleaning in Atlanta, Ga., call Bob , highest rated Atlanta carpet cleaner and serving metro Atlanta since I ve highlighted our targeted keyword phrase in red for both the title and description tags. Again, this is a fundamental step that can, in a lot of cases - and especially in locally targeted keyword phrases - be enough fuel to drive your website into the #1 rankings in Google, especially if and when (which is often) none of your competitors are leveraging this strategy of keyword phrase consistency. Reason #3: Lack of Keyword Targeted Content You have probably heard the saying before that Content Is King! This is mostly true... but what exactly does the phrase Content is King mean, and how to do you leverage high quality content in a such a way that it can actually drive your website into the top search results in Google? Usefulness and Empathy The #1 most important thing to keep in mind as you write content for your website is user experience. And when thinking about user experience, the best question to ask yourself is: how useful is my content to the visitor who s reading it? will people find themselves more informed as a result of reading my content? am I providing information that s relevant and concise based on my targeted keyword phrase? Creating useful content is critically important because it s ultimately what determines user experience on your site. When visitors are happy they ve landed on your website, they will end up staying longer, clicking through to other links and pages within your site, and have an overall better experience with your website.

9 And when visitors to your website have a better experience, you ultimate leave a positive impression and increase your brand equity. Visitor Empathy And not only does great content mean that people will stay longer on your site, but they will also click back to the search results less (hitting the back button because they were NOT happy with the content they found on your site) And just imagine if you had amazing content throughout your website.!!!! People would not only stay longer on the page, but they might just click thru to the other pages on your site all of which is factored heavily into Google s ranking algorithm. All of the above is what I refer to as visitor empathy! Meaning, Google takes direct interest in whether the user was satisfied when they landed on your website. The factors that I ve described above are also technically referred to as things like bounce rate (the rate at which people who land on your site then click back to the search results - they bounce off your site), and visitor flow (where do visitors go after landing on one of your pages -- or better yet, do visitor even click thru to your other pages?). Google has a long list of algorithms in place that help them determine whether or not your website, and the content therein, is useful to your visitors or not! Subtitles throughout the content Now that your content is useful to your visitors, you now want to turn your attention to the keyword targeting and exposure within your content. One of the best ways I ve found to naturally increase keyword phrase targeting within the content of your website is thru the use of subtitles - sometimes referred to as <h2> or <h3> tags. Remember our discussion above on how to present your targeted keyword phrase in the title and description tags of your web page. Now we want to carry on with this concept of consistency by implementing some subtitles throughout your content.

10 Mild saturation throughout your web page You do not want to go overboard with this strategy of implementing keyword targeted subtitles throughout your content. Over-saturating your content with your targeted keyword phrase can actually start having a negative impact on your search rankings. But it s certainly ok, and highly recommended, to add your targeted keyword phrase mildly throughout your content - let s just say once per paragraph, or once every other paragraph, as a rule of thumb. ** TIP: another great strategy for content creation is to leverage the content as an opportunity to present keyword phrase variations throughout your content. For example, and staying on topic with the targeted keyword phrase of carpet cleaning in Atlanta. Somewhere in the content, you may have an opportunity to add the phrase atlanta carpet cleaners or best Atlanta carpet cleaning services. This is what I m referring to as keyword phrase variations. Phrase variations not only give your content a more natural look and feel, but they also open the door for your website to rank for the long list of keyword phrase variations that other people are using as they look for carpet cleaners in Atlanta (sometimes commonly referred to as the long tail of a keyword phrase). Reason #4: Lack of Structured Data (Google Authorship & Video thumbnail integration) And just so you know. I ve saved my favorite topic for last! The discussion of structured data is not necessarily my favorite because it of the influence and authority it carries in Google s ranking algorithm, but because of the power it carries for branding your business and allowing you to stand out definitively in the top search results in Google. But what is structured data, Google authorship, and video thumbnail integration? All valid questions indeed and I can t wait to dive in and start explaining! Google Authorship You are probably familiar with Google authorship, you just might not have known what it s

11 called when you ve seen it in the past. Basically, Google authorship is where there s a thumbnail image of someone off to the left hand side of the search results in Google. Here s what Google Authorship looks like (actual client, Riskonnect.com) As you can tell, Google authorship allows you to stand out definitively in the search results - especially when your website is the only one on the front page with Google authorship integrated. Video Integration Google authorship (what we just discussed above) is awesome and all, and I love implementing this for my clients. But nothing is more powerful, in my opinion, than video integration! Video integration - through the use of structured data - allows you to have a large video thumbnail image appear with your website in the search results in Google. Let me quickly show you what I m talking about before I get into the details. Here s one of our client s video thumbnail integration, and who is ranking #1 in Google for the targeted keyword phrase personal injury lawyer athens :

12 Video thumbnail integration is the single most powerful tool you can leverage to cause you to stand out definitively in Google s search results! The Power of Google Authorship & Video Branding The power of Google authorship and video integration / structured data, is in the branding and exposure for your business. Over 90% of markets, both local and global, are void of any Google authorship integration.

13 This sounds unbelievable I know. But what it means for you and your business is that right now there s a huge, massive opportunity for you to stand out definitively from all of your competitors on the front page of Google! And when you stand out definitively from your competitors, you capture what I like to call that critical first look from people searching for your products and services. This happens because people s eyes are naturally drawn to images - especially images of a person s face. For whatever reason, when there s eyeballs present in a picture, people naturally look at the picture - and in this case, the picture is associated with your search results! There s an amazing statistic I read recently that said websites on the front page of Google that have authorship integration experience an increased click thru rate of 3-5 times. The reason Google authorship is so profound, besides that fact that very few businesses are doing it or leveraging it, is because Google sees this as a sign of authentication. Meaning, if someone is willing to put themselves behind their brand, more than likely that brand carries most transparency, legitimacy, and authority. And authenticity carries weight in Google search! I ve seen first hand Google authorship and video thumbnail integration have tremendous impacts on businesses. Here s just a few of the long list of benefits this can deliver your website and business: increased click thru rates increased branded exposure increased brand equity more calls more sales higher level of associative relationship between keyword phrase and your business envy from your competitors because of how you stand out in Google!!!! Bringing this to a close... I hope, more than anything, that this ebook has been helpful and valuable to you and your business. And I hope you are able to apply these principles to help your website gain more exposure, traffic, leads, and sales for your business.

14 As always, I am available to answer questions or help you and your business with your own search optimization efforts. You can reach me directly at, Bobby Holland Bobby Holland is the owner and founder of BipperMedia.com, a leading digital media and search optimization firm located in Athens, Georgia. Any questions, call Bobby

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