Once upon a time, people looked for information about a business in the yellow pages of their local telephone directory.
If a business placed an advertisement in that directory, it was wise to be the first company listed under the desired category. The “old school” method of naming your company, therefore, was to have a title such as All American Plumbing or AAA Heating & Cooling. The idea was that the consumer would dial your number first because you were first in your category.
In a sense, they were following the #1 immutable law of marketing; The Law of Leadership.
Fast forward to 2015 and the world of electronic communication. Searching the phone directory for a business listing has been following the path of the dinosaurs for a number of years, with the end not too far away. Today it is much faster and more efficient to look for a business using a web browser on a smart phone, laptop, tablet, or similar electronic device.
In many cases, the listing enables the online user to call the business directly from the listing, view the website, or discover the hours of operation among other choices.
So, although the old school theory of using the first letter of the alphabet to lead the way in a business listing is passe, the law of leadership still applies.
If a potential consumer does not know the specific name of your product, business, or company and chooses to search by a generic category such as “plumber” or “Italian restaurant,” it is critical that your business comes up on the first page of search results, preferably leading the way by being first on the page. Search engines are intuitive enough to know your location, so searching for an Italian restaurant when you’re in Chicago is not likely to return a result for Poughkeepsie, New York.
The bottom line: You want to be on the first page of search results! Statistics have shown that 74% of users will not go beyond that first page. If your business is not there, you are out of the picture, and will wonder why your website isn’t generating the results you expect.
How do you do it? One way we recommend is to work with a consulting firm with a proven track record. Just building a web presence is not enough in today’s competitive environment. You need the right key words and strong page descriptions, but you also need to understand your market segments – not everyone needs what you offer – and provide relevant content that entices your ideal audience members to use your products and become loyal to your brand.