Hello. I’d like to take a moment to introduce myself. I am the Search Box.
You’ve undoubtedly seen me around. I have my own dedicated websites, and I also tend to show up wherever and whenever I’m needed on other sites. I’m probably even in your web browser’s toolbar, ever-present but never intruding. Despite seeing me all over the place, you probably never thought much about what I actually do or how I do it. And if you run a website, you might not have considered how I can help you. On the surface, my job seems simple: help people find what they’re looking for on the web. But did you know you can help me do my job better?
Utilize the Search Box
In the “old days,” I used to read keywords in the hidden metadata tags on a website to figure out what that site was all about. But as I grew up, I figured out it’s too easy to be manipulated by keywords.
Now I learn about websites by reading them in much the same way a human being would. My squadrons of helpers (search spiders) fan out and find every website they can on a regular basis, looking for new sites and updates to ones I already know about. These spiders (not to worry: they don’t bite) scan through the content on every site they find looking for words and phrases that will let them know what’s happening on those websites. They report back to me and I collect and organize all this new information so that I have a good handle on what’s available on the web.
You have a website that tells all about what you do, what you make, and what you sell. You want people to find out about you, right? By engaging in simple Search Engine Optimization (SEO) you can help me learn all about you and the things you do and make, so I can help make sure people find you.
No Blog? No problem!
Even if you don’t have a blog, you can still make sure the content on your website is up-to-date and correct. If you’ve updated a product or changed its price or features, be sure you include that information.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but I don’t actually have eyes, so pictures alone are no help. You need to be sure there is accompanying text for every image that tells me what those pictures are. This text should be both on the website itself and in the metadata descriptions.
Prioritize Your Content
Finally, the content itself should be very descriptive. If you sell windows, you want to make sure you use every word and phrase possible to describe those windows. Are they just windows, or are they UV-rated, double-pane, energy-efficient, allergen-reducing windows for the home? The more specific you can be, the better. That way it’s easier for me (and the people looking online for windows) to find you and, hopefully, buy all their windows from you. When people look on the web for new windows, the more descriptive you are the higher you’ll appear on my search results pages.
Humans who’ve made it their job to study such things have produced a lot of reports showing that the closer to the top you are, the more clicks you get. The more clicks you get, the more potential customers you have.
These are just a few of the ways you can help me bring you customers. I’ll be back soon to tell you more about how we can work together. In the meantime, happy searching. I’ll be right at the top of the page waiting for you.