Updated: Nov 21, 2020
Business Owner: How did you find out about us?
Customer: I Googled it.
Business Owner: Great, thanks.
>>End of conversation<<
One positive in this scenario is that his dialog is already happening. That is step one.
However, ending a conversation at "I googled it" does not teach you much about your market. If the customer said, "John Smith told me about you." You would probably reach out and thank John Smith, or have some thoughts about John and the experience he had. In return, you will grow your knowledge and by effect, grow your business.
When a customer says "I searched online" or "I Googled it," this is an opportunity to dive in deeper to learn about your business, especially when it comes to search engine optimization or SEO.
Instead of ending a conversation upon such a response, you should ask, "Oh that's great, what did you search exactly?" This response is usually something to the tune of I searched for:
Most romantic date night restaurant in Tulsa
These phrases and keywords are gold and should be treated as such!
Keeping a record of these 'words' can be a FREE tool to help you grow your company in an organic direction without tons of market research and MONEY.
Here is a simple spreadsheet you can print and keep on hand to keep track of your keywords and search phrases.
After you have collected 30+ lines of information, you can start using this information to grow your online presence. (You may do this on your own, or you may have to share this information with your Google My Business manager and your web designer.) This information is a solid gold foundation for the castle you will build on top of it.
How do you utilize these keywords and search phrases to GROW YOUR BUSINESS?
The first and most natural thing to do is, write a blog. The words are right in front of you. If 6 of the 30 customers told you "I searched the best local place to buy gifts." You could simply title a blog just that and then get creative! Give bullet points as to WHY you are the BEST and then take it a step further and talk about the products these people purchased and add photos or videos where you can. BE WORDY! Google loves blogs and words! Synonyms are equally important. After all, THESE are the words people are using to find you and YOU are the expert in your INDUSTRY!
Next, you should make some Google My Business posts, events, and updates surrounding these keywords and search phrases. Giving this information DIRECTLY to the source of searching just makes common marketing sense. Again, be wordy! Use up every last character space that you can.
Make website changes to hone in on these golden words and terms. This is a little more complicated than a simple post. There are a few factors that come into play on your website's SEO. Headlines are very important here, followed by content that supports the context to elaborate and accentuate your goals. If you are using a keyword tool or plugin, make sure to check what has been placed there and see if changes need to be made. In addition, be sure that your meta tags and alt tags are hitting on the same words.
Build content and run a campaign. In the above steps, you have done most of the heavy thinking. So take the time now to create graphics, take photos, gather b roll, and design short and long format video to create buzz and excitement to help drive traffic to your website from social media. You may reformat sizes here to help retouch and post on Google My Business or to run ads on Google, Facebook, and Instagram. And never forget the power of a testimony to help sell a product or service. More to come on that soon.
There are a couple of flip sides to this advice. One this is for an established company if you are a start-up: DO YOUR INITIAL KEYWORD RESEARCH. Pay for it or host focus groups. Also, if you are diligently trying to sell or provide something that rarely sells, go back and reevaluate those keywords/phrases too.
Keyword and search phrases change over time. There are generational gaps. What I choose to Google may be completely different than my husband, mother, or teenager. So keep these factors in mind, there is not a one size fits all. But most of all, NEVER STOP GROWING.