How it Works
Google (and the other search engines) has robots that are constantly scanning the internet to find new or updated websites. When they find your website they review it, rank it and make it available in search results.
The Time Delay
Just as there used to be a time delay between getting a phone number and it appearing in the printed white pages, there’s also a delay between having a website live online and it appearing in Google search results. It can take several weeks between a website launching and your being able to find it using Google. In the interim you can still hand out your website address, because people can always type it into the address bar to find it.
Speeding up the process
There’s no direct way to influence Google to index your site faster. However, experts have noted that these factors can assist speeding up the process:
- Google Analytics set up (we do this for all clients)
- A verified Google Business Listing
- Build Business Citations
Both of these are beneficial to your business so it’s well worth the time to set these up.
Google maps/business listing
Have you noticed that Google is showing Google Map listings on top and often above all other search results? Just do a search for a restaurant in your suburb or town and have a look at how much of the page is taken up with map results. Often times the top few results are Yellow Pages or other directory listings, followed by the map results, and then actual business websites below that. Clearly it’s important to get on this list, and it’s not too difficult.
Setting up a Google Business Page
Get started here: https://www.google.com/business/
You will need to verify your address. If you’re fortunate some of your business details may already be online and you only need to request a call to verify you are the true owner of the business.
In most cases though new listings are verified by a postcard being sent to your listed business address. This proves you are where you say you are.
Your business will likely not show until it is verified.
Once verified, that’s not it, you need to:
- Add your logo
- Include your opening hours
- Your website address
- Business images (you, your office or location, staff etc).
- Wait… Yes it still take about 2 months for Google to launch your business listings in their searches.
Building Business Citations
Once your Google My Business listing has been setup it’s important to build links with various business directories online. This helps to ‘prove’ to Google that you are WHO you say you are and WHERE you say you are.
This has a direct effect on where you appear in the “Map Pack” listing for a location based search.
Most are directories are free, but some are paid.
- Your contact details need to be identical across the internet. Don’t have ‘L1’ in one place and ‘Level 1’ in another. Be pedantic, and ruthlessly make sure every contact listing for your firm throughout the entire internet is identical.
- Add your website address. This will help your firm’s website rank better in search results.
- Choose the best fitting category from the list.
- Fill out as much information as you can: hours of operation, payment options, photos and videos if you have them.
- Use the additional details field to add more information but don’t repeat anything from your business title, address or category fields. Google and others can be particularly harsh on what they see as ‘keyword stuffing’. So, don’t put your suburb in there, or what you do if it isn’t your business name. This is a good place to mention things like easy free parking, mobile service, family friendly appointments and so on.