Avoiding the traps
Clients frequently ask about their website being Good on Google. They’re right to be concerned because Google is obviously an extremely powerful marketing tool and getting a high ranking will drive more customers to their website.
It’s easy to go wrong, however.
Part of the art is including in the website text certain keywords that people looking for your product or service are likely to type into Google. This can be quite a challenge for some business owners who keep focusing on what they want to sell rather than thinking like their customers.
The sofa test
Try sitting on the sofa and putting yourself in the mind of someone who might buy from you. Example: a florist. Customers are more likely to search for ‘flowers for a wedding’ than ‘lilies and chrysanthemums.’
The crux about being ‘Good on Google’ is not to fall into the trap of forgetting customers are human. If your home page is just a concoction of keywords that is confused, repetitive and boring, you’re shooting yourself in the foot.
You might be No 1 on Google but within a line or two you’ll have put people right off, and they’ll click away to your competitors.
The spam trap
I was recently writing landing pages for a travel insurance website and could have squeezed in about 20 repetitions of their keywords. After consultation with the company’s SEO experts, however, we decided this might be overdoing it. At just 450 words of text, so many keywords would have looked too much like spam, so I happily weeded half out.
Hiding keywords written in white on a white background is a Google sin you can be banned for, but other no-no’s are a bit of a moveable feast as Google is always changing its rules to favour sites which are organically popular rather than stuffed full of structured key phrases.
So, think like your customers, and don’t overdo the keywords.