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Local SEO – Is it really of any use for my business in Bristol?

Bristol SEO Local

 

At present, 9.1 million people search for the term “SEO” every month on Google to try and learn a bit more about what value it could add to their business.

Due to jargon and the technical terms used by the industry, it is inevitable that local business owners in Bristol (and anywhere really) look at SEO as a puzzle that they would love to solve but don’t know how to even begin. In addition, the mystery is further compounded by all web designers saying that they will do SEO as part of their maintenance service of a website. Therefore, a combination of ‘I am not really sure about what I am buying’ together with ‘my web designer is already doing that for me’ results in a lot of businesses not truly appreciating the true value of SEO to their business.

What can you do for yourself – well having a Google places account and updated WHOIS information carries great rewards from the search engines locally. Using Bing Maps and Yahoo Local  to get your business more visible locally is a quick win. Getting links from local businesses and promoting regular fresh content on the site is a great way to keep your site dynamic and ensure it is rewarded for the keywords relevant for your business.

But will any of this actually get you business – well, the answer is simple ——-

At present all generations use the internet to purchase goods and services from businesses they never knew about until the precise moment they typed in their requirements into Google, Bing or Yahoo – and you yourself are doing exactly the same thing most days – and so are your customers. If your business is local, supplies the service a potential customer is looking for and provides great value and service – be it a plumbing service, a builder, a solicitor, an accountant, a florist, etc – it is highly probable that you would have found a customer who did not find you by work of mouth.

The statistics for local seo are very supportive –

85% of consumers search for local businesses on line (1)

71% have purchased a product or service online (2)

24% – 28%  of all online searches have a local intent. (3)

So local search needs to be taken seriously, for more information get in touch

Author: Robert Trapnell - Bristol SEO Partnership

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1. Local consumer review survey 2012 2. Pew Internet & American Life Project  3. Local Search Study

 

Google – Who Clicks Where?

When someone searches Google have you ever wondered who clicks where? You may be surprised…..

Google - Who Clicks Where?

 

 

Author: Robert Trapnell - Bristol SEO Partnership

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The Power Of Your Personal Authority On-Line

How to Set Up the Rel=Author Tag for Google Plus

You may have recently noticed when you do a search on Google some of the results have a picture of the author of the article or blog post (this is known as a rich snippet). As Google continues to make sure that search results become even more relevant it is putting a value on individual authors as well as websites. So we are now seeing that authors whom blog on specialist subjects beginning to get more authority in search results.

rel=author bristol

If you regularly publish online content, you’ll have a natural desire to want it to rank higher in the search engines’ results listings and as such, it’s essential to learn how to set up Google Authorship’s Rel=Author tag, which enables you to tie your content to your Google Plus profile.

Before you’re able to set up Google Authorship, you’ll need a Google Plus profile that’s accessible to the public and access to the website on which your content is published. You’ll then need to log-in to your Google Plus profile and click on “Edit Profile”. Once there, click on the “Contributor To” section and enter the URL of the website on which your content is published. In doing so, you’ll inform Google that you’re the author of the content.

Next, you’ll be required to pay a visit to the author page of the website you write content for and link your work back to your Google Plus profile by using your name as the anchor text for your Google Plus profile URL. Your name must match the name you use on your Google Plus profile and you must ensure that the link contains the parameter “?rel=author”. In the absence of this parameter, Google won’t be able to verify that you’re the author of the content.

Your code should look like this:
<a href=“https://plus.google.com/YOURUNIQUEGOOGLEPLUSURL?rel=author”>YOURGOOGLEPLUSNAME</a>.

If your Google Plus URL ends in 0101010101010 and your name is Joe Blogs, you’ll have the code:
<a href=“https://plus.google.com/0101010101010?rel=author”>Joe Blogs</a>.

You may wish to include this code within a sentence such as
“Connect with me at <a href=“https://plus.google.com/0101010101010?rel=author”>Joe Blogs</a.”

You can then post this sentence to your author page.

Once you’ve added this code to your website, you’ll need to verify that it actually works. You can do this through the use of the Google Rich Snippets Testing Tool. Here, you’ll be required to paste the URL of your post or page into the tool before clicking on the “Preview” button. You’ll receive notification that your efforts have been successful when Google returns a relevant search preview.

Makes sure that you are raising your personal authority as well as your websites, who knows how important this may be in the future.

Author: Robert Trapnell - Bristol SEO Partnership

Connect to Rob on , Twitter and Linkedin

Outsourcing Pay Per Click in Bristol – I can do it myself, why do I need an expert to help

PPC Bristol

 

 

 

 

 

The minefield that is pay-per-click (PPC) advertising presents challenges for small, medium and large businesses in Bristol. Anyone and everyone can set up an adwords account and have an advert up on Google for relevant keywords in 20-30 minutes.

 
There are numerous pitfalls that one needs to be aware of to ensure that not only is their pay-per-click getting them targeted traffic but also at the best price possible. Running our own on-line businesses at the Bristol SEO Partnership, we practice what we preach and we have learnt over the years that the difference between the pay-per-click cost of position 1 and position 2 is sometimes over 50%. Clever pricing and an over-inflated adwords keyword tool ensure that the pay-per-click bids tend to get people to over-spend chasing position 1.

 
As a new digital marketer or a first time advertiser on the search engines, we set up an adwords campaign (unsure which level of keyword search to use – broad, phrase or exact) and position our bids at either the projected costs of position 1 or just under. We design our adwords advert – struggling to understand how to improve the quality score, making our main keywords fit in the limited space, unsure about all the various options that are offered in the adwords back office. Once we have set our daily budget we put our adverts live and watch to see where they land on the page and how much traffic they capture.

 
Most of the time, they don’t get the first 2-3 positions and then we are encouraged to increase our bid. Until now, you have been doing all the work and there has been no need for any help or the need for an expert.

 
At this stage, without spending a lot of time (time you don’t have) on learning the various tricks for adwords, the only option is to increase the bid to capture the first spot. However, the other option is to allow an expert to help edit and alter your adwords campaign to make sure you catch the relevant online traffic for your business in and around Bristol whilst making sure that your spend gets less and less. Reducing your cost per click at the same time as increasing your click through rates whilst using all the adwords keyword data you get access too to devise an natural search position SEO strategy would place your business in the best possible position to maximise its customer potential online.

 

Author: Robert Trapnell - Bristol SEO Partnership

Connect to Rob on , Twitter and Linkedin

Top Tips for Google Places In Bristol

As local search becomes more and more important to local businesses trying to get a foothold on search engine results, Google Places (soon to become Google local) is becoming a key part of the mix.

Google places allow businesses to create their own listings that appear on the Google search results for those people in your local area. For example I live in Bristol and if I search for coffee shops I get the following results

Google Places For SEO Bristol

As you can see the first 3 natural results are a directory and then 2 Wikipedia entries and then it gets straight into the local Google Places results. This makes sense as Google understand that if I live in Bristol and search for coffee shops I probably am looking for some locally. It is also nice to notice that the independents on the whole are appearing and not the Starbucks of this world.

So lets delve a bit deeper. If you hover over the result you get more detail.

Google Places In Bristol

In this case the Boston Tea Party have done a good job of creating an attractive listing. Compare this to the listing of Spike Island, what a difference.

Bristol Google Places

Lets take a closer look at The Boston Tea Party entry:

Google Places in Bristol

Map – Have a listing for each location – The Boston Tea Party has a number of locations to it makes sense to add a listing for each one.

Great Images – Adding images makes a lot of difference allowing viewers a real insight into you business.  The Boston Tea Party  have some nice images and a link to Google Street View.  You could also add videos and use Google Business Places which is similar to Google Street View but inside your business.

Score and Review – This branch of the Boston Tea Party has 30 reviews and a score of 24. The score is determined by user reviews. Users can rate a business using a 0 – 3 scale. Google averages these scores and multiplies that averaged result by 10 to get the final score. Google also say they adjust some scores using other “inputs and signals” to ensure fairness, in short this is hoped to avoid businesses or the competition trying to fool the system with fake reviews or other shady tactics.

The Boston teas Party has a score of 24 and according to Google this means that it is “Very Good to Excellent” a score of 26 – 30 would move it into the “Extraordinary to Perfection….”

High scores help you get to the top of the Google Places results, so get those reviews…..

At a glance – Make sure you have the location and category term (eg Café) you initially registered you place for in this section, along with other related keyword.  Also put the category term and keywords in the business description.

Other Details – Make sure that you fill in as much of the detail as you can, including opening hours, address and contact details. Also use standard categories (you can pick up to 5) when you set up you account to describe your business.

Google places is a real opportunity for local businesses to make an impression on local search engines results. Make sure you have a Google Places entry and make sure it works as hard as possible.

 

Author: Robert Trapnell - Bristol SEO Partnership

Connect to Rob on , Twitter and Linkedin