Google – The Little Engine That Could

The search engine that started it all “Google”, has become a worldwide phenomenon. People from 30 – 50 years of age have coined the phrase “Google It” to mean “look it up”. You can get answers on most any topic, and the same question can be asked in many different forms and formats.

Googling “George Clooney Movies” will give you a list of all the moves that starred the famous actor, just as “Capitol of Wisconsin” will tell you that Madison is Wisconsin’s capitol. From general information to specific things in your neighborhood, like “Where can I get new car tires near my house?” will provide a location-based answer for tire retailers in your area, including the distance from you (assuming you have your location based option enabled on your computing device). However, Google and other search engines can do more for you than just answer every day, insignificant questions. They can help generate serious traffic to your business.

Statistics show that more than 80% of today’s consumers are using the internet to locate their goods and services, usually via Google, but also through Bing and Yahoo search engines. Google has the lion’s share of the inquiries with just under 70% of the volume. The remainder is split between Bing and Yahoo with 17% and 13% respectively.

The bottom line is that an online presence is an absolute must for a business to thrive in the new age of online marketing. This usually begins with a website which has been optimized for search engines (SEO). However, today’s inquiring consumers need more than just a website. We must now include Social Media sites like Blogs, Facebook, Google+, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Instagram… and the list goes on and on.

Google works through complex algorithms and Web crawlers that dissect your site to determine its relevance so it can be ranked properly. The techniques are super-complex and even people who work for Google don’t totally understand it. However, understand this; Google’s newest search algorithm, “Hummingbird”, holds the “Social” component in high regard (about 40%) when it comes to ranking the site. This means that you must consistently share relevant and valuable text, video and link related content along with a compelling “Call to Action”. These components will play a much heavier role in the ranking results than ever before.

In 2013 there were almost 6 billion Google searches done per day. What are you doing so that your business positions themselves to appear in those search results? I once said that “Online reputation is critical today and those businesses that don’t take this to heart will most likely not be here in five years”.

Don’t let that happen to your business. Get with a professional and establish an online marketing plan to include some of these major components. Don’t let your competition beat you to the punch. Make a New Year’s resolution to increase your online customer acquisition by 20 – 25% in 2014 and set up an action and monitoring plan to accomplish it.

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