To Those Few Google Haters Out There: No One Else Can Compete

  • Comments: 1
  • Written on: October 23rd, 2006

This afternoon I had a conversation with one of our web development customers about the placement of her website in Google. She was concerned that she was not close enough to the top of the results in Google, which puzzled her given that she ranked well in Yahoo and MSN.

I explained to her that saying she does well in Yahoo and MSN but not in Google is like saying the Huskers can beat any Texas high school team out there, just not the college ones.

Google is responsible for more than 80% of all of the search traffic that reaches websites today, and it is evident in their posting of a near 100% increase in last quarter’s profit. If you don’t rank in Google, you may as well not rank anywhere. The key question to ask when discussing Google search results is what was your search term? Broad search terms like “Car Dealership” are very competitive, and are more difficult to get on top of. If you refine the search term for Car Dealership Nebraska you will have a much easier time making it into the top 10 results.

Upon telling my customer this, she paused. It is a hard concept for many business owners to grasp at first. You want to be every one’s first choice for new cars, but if you try and win the “Car Dealership” search fight, you will lose and get no new business.

But if you choose to fight the winnable “Car Dealership Nebraska” battle, you could generate some new business and that new business could fund improvements to your site that can make it competitive for more broad search terms.

The key to attaining and maintaining good search engine results positioning is having an interesting website with content that changes on a daily basis. More pages is always better than less, and the more people who link to your site the higher it will rank.

The trouble is that there are so many websites out there competing for the top 10 spots that it is easy to be out classed unless you stay on top of your site. Going back to the example of our customer, I explained that there were some simple modifications that we could make to her site that would increase her results – maybe get her site into the top 100 results. But even there, she would not see much traffic. You really need to be in the top 5 or 10 results to make a difference.

To get there, she would have to add more text to her site and change it more frequently. She would need to invest more time into her site – daily time and energy – even though the immediate benefits are hard to see.

Take this blog for example. When it started we had very few readers. But I still made my best effort to come here daily and post new and interesting information for you. Over time, our readership grew and now we have over 9,000 visitors a week. Google has rewarded us with a page rank of 5/10 (0 is a non-important site and 10 is a very important site).

Now other websites reference the content posted here, which gives us additional credibility and raises our rank even higher in Google. But even with that, I have no illusions of ranking in the top 10 for the search term “technology blog.” But if you do a search for “thor technology blog” or even “thor schrock” this blog is the #1 hit every time.

If you have a website and you want more traffic, drop a comment below and I’ll give you some hints as to what you can do to improve your ranking. No charge for the free advice.

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