How To Rank Higher In Google Search
The following article is written for business owners who are interested in achieving better success with their advertising campaigns. Please note that this is not a comprehensive guide, and is posted to give the reader a general idea of how certain platforms work. Be sure to check back for more valuable information.
Perhaps one of the most asked question of me lately has been, “how can my business rank higher in Google?”.
It’s a simple question with a much more complex answer.
How Google Works
Google’s mission is simple: populate the most relevant results for whatever the user is searching. For example, if someone is searching for “Chinese restaurants around me”, Google’s algorithms geo-locate where the user is searching and also crunch the search term to produce the most relevant results. If you were looking for some good General Tso’s takeout in your neighborhood, you wouldn’t want to see websites for recipes. Search relevancy is paramount to their business model. By providing accurate search results, more people are likely to use their services. The more people using their search results, the more equitable their advertising platform is and the more they can charge for placement.
Organic vs. Paid
There are two types of search results – organic and paid. Paid search results appear at the top and (sometimes) bottom of Google searches – both on desktop and mobile devices. They’re designated by a little graphic that says AD. Below you’ll see what a paid search ad for one of our clients looks like:
Currently this ad is showing as the third down in our home location (Sarasota County, Florida) for the search “Laser tattoo removal near me”.
Organic searches show up in results without being sponsored. Using the above search as an example, the remainder of the first page results looked like this:
As you can see, the organic results shifted from actual laser tattoo removal clinics to more of a general listing of laser tattoo removal. Depending on your business and your goals, you shouldn’t always trust organic listing strategy to put you on top of the pile. Google is constantly changing and refining their algorithms, and what worked for you 6 months ago may not be working now.
What Determines Search Rank?
Whether it’s paid or organic search, Google takes several factors into consideration when populating results. This includes:
- Page load speed – how fast your website loads
- Search relevancy – how the content on your website translates to the users’ search.
- Your targeted devices – what devices your website populates properly on. For example, if you don’t have a mobile responsive website, your website won’t show up in mobile search results.
How do these above factors help or hurt your Google search location? With organic (unpaid) search results, you’re at the mercy of Google’s algorithm. The best course of strategy is to design or modify your website’s content to match the potential searches of your perspective customers to the best of your ability and hope for the best.
With paid advertising, Quality Score is everything:
- Ad auction eligibility: Having better quality components typically makes it easier and cheaper for your ads to enter an auction. Our measures of ad quality also help determine whether your ad is qualified to appear at all.
- Your actual cost-per-click (CPC): Higher quality ads can often lead to lower CPCs. That means you pay less per click when your ads are higher quality.
- Ad position: Higher quality ads lead to higher ad positions, meaning they can show up higher on the page.
- Your keyword’s ad position bid estimates: Higher quality ads are typically associated with lower first page bid estimates, top of page bid estimates, and first position bid estimates. That means you’re more likely to get your ads on the first page of search results with a lower bid when your ads have high quality components (expected CTR, ad relevance, and landing page experience).
To Advertise or Not?
In a world of ever changing competitive marketing, we feel it’s absolutely necessary for most businesses to have some sort of paid Google advertising. If done properly (in conjunction with a good, search engine optimized website), your return can be multiples over what you spent.
Also, with PPC (pay per click) advertising, you only pay when someone clicks your ad, so you’re only paying when people are actually taking direct action from their search results.
Google offers a massive amount of different advertising options in their AdSense platform. You can appear only in searches, you can use their display network (YouTube, ads on blogs and other websites), or you can use both the search and display network.
You can also add extensions to help drive business. Current extensions (included free) are: sitelink, click to call, location, app downloads, and more.
How much does it cost?
With Google’s advertising platform, you can set a daily budget at $1 and move up infinitely in daily spend. The more competition you have within your targeted area, the more you’ll need to spend to maintain rank.
With our laser tattoo client, area competition is abundant. Our average cost per click for the keyword term “laser tattoo removal” is somewhere around $6.50 each click. On the other side of the coin, we have a small photography client advertising in the same area who is getting a CPC rate of $.38 per click for the term “wedding photographer”.
To keep costs low, you must:
- Optimize your website for speed, search engine relevancy, and mobile responsiveness.
- Investigate your direct competition by thinking like a customer. Go into Google and begin searching around. if you own a candle making business, punch in “local candles around me” and see what comes up. Check out how many results are ads and how many are organic. Visit the respective websites and check them out. Figure out what they’re doing, and try to figure out what’s working for them.
- Know what you’re doing in the AdWords interface.
How Can Double D Media Help You?
We have invested a lot of time and money in learning Google’s advertising platform front to back. We offer full service solutions for SEM (search engine marketing).
First, we will perform a free SEO audit on your current website. Remember, your search engine results will only be as good as the content the ads direct to. We have some incredible tools to be able to show you how your website stacks up against your competition and we can offer solutions to help fix any deficiencies. If you’d like a free, no obligation SEO audit, click the button below.
DDMI also offers search engine marketing management for a monthly retainer fee. This allows us to create your ads, monitor their progress in real time, and adjust when needed to maximize whatever monthly budget you set.
A Few Notes In Closing
As you can see, there is a lot that goes into getting you to trend higher in Google searches. We are Google Certified – which means we’ve studied and learned Google’s advertising system, as well as taken a few comprehensive tests to demonstrate our understanding.
If you have any questions, or would like more information, feel free to contact Pat DeLuca directly at [email protected].