There is nothing better than attending an event and walking away with a load of golden nuggets that can make your business better. Chick-fil-a takes the prize of “Best Nuggets Ever,” but for best business nuggets I vote for Charlotte Regional Business Alliance and their “Reach Customers Online with Google” event.
In January I attended the “Reach Customers Online with Google” event hosted by CRBA. Google presented to about 70 different organizations on how to make the most of your relationship with Google.
The event got me thinking about the following questions – and if you’re a business owner, you should be thinking about them too:
How do customers find you?
When customers find you, do you completely confuse them with your over-complicated messaging, cobweb-infested website, or lack of clear call-to-actions?
Google taught us three things during the event that help us address these questions:
- How to reach local customers searching on Google by using Google My Business
- How to optimize your website for organic search results and conversions
- How to promote your products and services using Google tools
So here are three of the nuggets for you to fry on 🙂
1. Optimize your Google My Business listing
Google My Business is a free local business listing that can help your business appear across Google Search and Maps.
Besides setting up your Google My Business listing with helpful information such as your location, contact information, and website link, you should also get the most out of your listing by asking people to leave reviews.
Whether you’re a service-based business or product-based business, you should ask customers to leave a review. To get started, set a goal of getting 5-10 reviews. You can expedite the process by drafting the review and letting customers edit.
The perfect Google review needs to be in the following order and 1-2 sentences each.
- Describe the problem you were having. Bonus: how did it make you feel?
- How did we solve the problem?
- What did success look like? Or describe what life was like after you used it?
2. Optimize your website to attract AND convert leads
When a potential customer finds you on Google, where’s the first place they go? If you answered “My website!” then here’s a golden star for you! Prospective customers look at your website to see if you can help them address their pain points.
So your website is kind of a big deal! Here are three things to keep in mind when it comes to your website:
1. Don’t forget about search engine optimization!
What is search engine optimization (SEO)? Imagine hundreds of tiny robot spiders controlled by Google crawling through your site. They’re on the hunt for information that tells them what your website is all about!
Then Google uses that information to serve-up your site to people searching.
If you’re not ranking on page 1 or 2 for key terms related to what you do, then your site needs some SEO love!
Start by choosing some strategic terms someone might search when they’re experiencing a problem your product or service can fix. Then use those terms to optimize key pages on your site.
And don’t forget about the back-end either! Pages titles, meta descriptions, and alt-tags are just as important as the words on the page!
2. Does your website pass the Grunt Test?
The Grunt Test, a term coined by Donald Miller CEO of Storybrand, refers to the ease at which a potential customer can look at your website and quickly understand what it is you’re selling.
To test whether your website passes the Grunt Test, have someone look at the homepage of your website and see if he/she can answer these three questions with just a quick glance:
- What do you do?
- How are you going to make my life better?
- How do I buy the product or service?
3. Speed matters!
Your website’s load time is one instance where slow and steady doesn’t win the race.
The rule of thumb is that your website needs to load in under 5 seconds. Anything longer and you can say “Goodbye!” to your website visitors because they won’t stick around to see what happens once your site eventually loads.
During “Reach Customers Online with Google” there were load speeds of 9 seconds, 15 seconds, 18 seconds, and even some that never loaded!
If your site runs like molasses, then keep reading to learn how you can improve your website speed.
3. Tools for promoting your products and services on Google
As you digest the nuggets above, here are a few french fries – oops sorry dieticians – a few carrots (i.e. useful tools) to munch on:
- www.Google.com/business – Step by step guide to improving Google listing
- www.google.com/trends – Tracking the search volume of certain words or phrases
- www.thinkwithgoogle.com – Test your site speed and learn how you can improve speed
If all of this seems overwhelming, don’t worry. Not only did we attend the “Reach Customers Online with Google” event in Charlotte, but The Squad is also a certified Google Partner! You heard that right – Google Partner.
Our team can help you make the most out of your relationship with Google. What are you waiting for? Start a conversation today!