Whether you're exclusively an online business or have a brick-and-mortar presence, your customers are looking for you - maybe not you specifically but your type of business - through a search engine. Google alone receives at least 100 billion searches per month.
In order to stay relevant and be found through these search engines, you need to keep your website fresh and updated. Websites are not a "set it and forget it" platform. Google, the number one search engine in the U.S., has bots that crawl websites regularly to rebuild their index and rank them in search results. Per Google, "Crawls are based on many factors such as PageRank, links to a page, and crawling constraints such as the number of parameters in a URL. Any number of factors can affect the crawl frequency of individual sites."
Although the crawl is algorithmic (it happens when it happens,) there are best practices you can follow to make sure Google crawls your website more frequently.
- Submit your website to Google at http://www.google.com/submityourcontent/.
- Include a site map page with links to important pages on your website. Update your site map anytime an important page is added.
- Submit said sitemap using Google Search Console. Google uses your Sitemap to learn about the structure of your site and to increase our coverage of your webpages.
Next, update your website every few months, applying keywords as needed or revising content based on new information. If you have a blog as part of your website, post consistently. These are your owned media channels so keeping them up-to-date and interesting is key to continue generating leads through search.
Start by making a list of potential keywords - words your customer might be using to find your business online. Then use a tool like SEM Rush, Google's Keyword Planner or WordStream to see how many searches are done on the keyword in a given time, what the competition is and what complementary keywords could work.
There are several placed you can add or update keywords on a page:
- body copy
- page title
- meta description (About the length of a tweet)
- url (separate with hyphens, not underscores)
Bonus tip: Don't forget about social. Google pulls keywords from social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest into its search results. Post often and include timely and relevant keywords.
For more information, check out Google's guidelines to help find, index and rank your site: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35769