While no-one doubts the global dominance of Google or the need to make sure you consider this giant in your SEO strategy, it’s not everything. There are many other search engines, communities and online directories that you can use to optimise your content, reach a wider audience, and drive website traffic.
Yahoo! Bing and friends
If you already have an SEO strategy in place, even the rough concept of one, then you will have keywords and you will know some places to put them that might increase your search engine ranking.
Google is the search engine that we hear the most information about, so it is natural to focus your keyword placement for what will work best for Google. But you can achieve higher rankings on other browser search engines such as Bing and Yahoo quicker and easier and with greater conversion rates.
You can also achieve a far better reach for your basic on-page optimisation if you target what works for these search engines specifically.
You may have heard that videos are now the media format of choice to bring you the greatest number of customers. On Facebook and Instagram, videos have more power to get attention and shares, and your customers are also looking for them on your own website.
This doesn’t mean that camera-shy people have to jump in front of the lens, although that does help as potential customers love to see real people on screen. You can make clever and engaging videos without plastering your face all over them if you don’t feel comfortable doing that; and getting shareable videos out there are an awesome way to bring traffic in your general direction.
One sure fire way to reach people is through YouTube videos (and this is only partially because it is owned by Google!). Placing business or brand related videos on YouTube makes it easier for other sites to reference you; they are far more likely to do so with video to link to than just an image or quote.
And people who watch your videos are far closer to conversion than other kinds of visitors who might be more ‘window-shopping’. It is estimated that over 85% of people will make a purchase after watching a video on the product.
Tips for increasing your reach through YouTube
So, make sure your videos are out there to be reached, that is step one.
And step two is make sure that they are optimised in your titles and descriptions, the same way you would optimise your meta titles and descriptions on your website.
Turn on the closed-captioning feature on your videos, not just to reach hearing-impaired viewers, but also to better connect with people watching their feeds on social media with the sound off.
Promote the existence of your videos far and wide to get more views and shares; use your website, guest blogging, your business’ social media pages as well as well as plugging it on online forums whenever you get the opportunity.
Shares and Traffic tell search engines your content is popular and of interest to the public, which means they show it to more people by ranking it higher.
It is well known that organic reach through Facebook is not what it used to be, but is it worth trying at all? Digital marketing experts think that it is. After all with over 2 billion users active users every month, it can be a hard audience to ignore completely.
Facebook is also a search engine. There is a big ol’ search bar across the top of the site after all.
A good chunk of people in the Optimise+ Grow Online Facebook Group find us from searching. To have your business found your content and page need to include relevant words and language that your customers would be most likely to use.
Finding your business on Facebook is one thing, but then to seal the deal you’ll need to check it’s super easy for people to click through to your website, buy from you, or find what they are looking for in your feed. Fill your Facebook content with the sort of information that both engages people to connect or share, or content that drives people to your website or store.
The first users of Pinterest thought it was just a very large and handy scrapbook, a wonderful bunch of catalogued images to help you fill out your vision board for your laundry renovation project. But it is so much more than that, and a good business presence on Pinterest can bring traffic to your website the same way a presence on other social media can.
Pinterest can be a fantastic way to reach people who are closer to conversion, because they are actively planning a project. These are less ‘window-shoppers’ and more people in the active phases of researching to buy.
Pins can be exceptionally powerful because they are up to 100 times more sharable than a tweet and have an estimated lifespan of one week (compared to 90 minutes for Facebook). Pins have a far higher CTR than posts on Facebook, so it is worth a second look at this platform to see what it can do for you.
The same naming, describing and tagging principles mentioned above apply so that your content can be found though!
Social Media Hashtags
Hashtags are the keywords of social media, and if you have a social media presence for your business then you should be utilising hashtags to help bring customers to you. This is very true of platforms like Twitter and Instagram, and to a lesser extent works on Pinterest as well.
Hashtags need to be researched in the same sort of way as keywords, and are also fluid, ever-changing concepts that you must keep on top of.
People use business directories to search directly for services, including global, local and niche directories. The power of these are boosted by search engines like Google which use your location listing to triangulate your position when people on mobile devices search for services nearby.
The takeaway message of this is to get your business listed on as many directories as you can, and keep your details correct and consistent on all of them. This is another free way to bring people to your website, it just takes a little time and effort to set up.
How To Be Found In Any Search Engine
To be found in search engines – or anywhere online – your online media needs to be named, titled, described and tagged appropriately so that your ideal client can find you.
Yes it does take a little extra time but it pays off! I mean who doesn’t love free advertising, right?!
After all, you likely spend a bunch of extra time creating fancy post graphics for “free” marketing on Facebook, so why not spend a little extra time optimising your content for free marketing in search results where people are actively searching for what you are offering.