Is your website Google friendly?

Grab a coffee, take a seat. This is a reality check on all fronts of your website, your site may well tick all the boxes already so you’re probably reading this just to make sure. If you’re not confident that you’re website is up to scratch then take a look at the points below, you may find them very useful.

Google never sleeps when it comes to rolling out new updates for its incredibly sensitive and expansive search engine. But don’t be disheartened, there are tips and tricks you can learn as time moves by, in this post we have some helpful insights and points of reference you should make sure you are adhering to.

Ways to make your site Google Friendly

Can mobile users see your website without having to zoom in? If not then you’re impeding your own visibility and Google WILL serve a penalty for this. If you have a basic website nowadays, then making sure you have a duplicate version tailored just for mobiles & tablets, this will improve your chances of at least appearing on the listings.

Are your contact details clearly seen when landing on the website? Don’t take your own word for it, get some feedback from regular visitors or family and friends, maybe even a web designer. Any feedback you get on your website is usually helpful as it can help you realise what’s easy to see and what isn’t. The simple fact here is that if your contact details are not easily seen then you might find your engagement rate via your website is poor. Simply making the contact details easy to see is going to give you much more kudos with Google.

If someone can’t call, give them every opportunity to get in touch, they may be on a train, a bus, or being unsociable at a family meal, whatever the reason, they need to be able to email or request a call back from you. This is how you secure that interaction through the window to your business. I can honestly say, I have chosen to not do business with some companies as a result of no or poorly visible contact information. For me, it gives the impression that they don’t care about their image and therefore this could seep into their ethics as a business, after all, the internet is now where people spread most of their own judgement on others.

Are you holding the torch too low? It’s incredibly important that landing pages and products worth noting or services rendered should all be displayed clearly and visibly as soon as the individual lands on your website. Without this you could become a fleeting return to Google to look for someone who wants me to buy their goods/services. For instance, if you’re an Alloy wheel shop, I want to see your best and biggest sellers straight away, it gives me an idea of quality and a theme towards the kind of products I can expect to find as I search through the website.

Are you social? There are so many clients who literally cannot be bothered to pick up the task of monitoring, let alone actually using, social media. The fact is that Google is ‘aware’ of your social presence and this isn’t just Facebook, it’s Twitter and Instagram too. (I’ve missed out a whole heap of extras here but you get the idea.)

Do you have a G+ link, Believe me when I say that Google likes to get up close and personal, it’s not looking for a heated encounter, it’s trying to get an idea of whether you’re actually active as a business, they also like to see what your previous customers feel about the service they have had from you, or review of the products & delivery of the item they ordered. It also acts as a go-to for people who are in a rush, this is where they can find; Opening Times, Peak hours for your business, Location & Directions, Contact details, Link to your website, This also taps into your social media. It’s incredibly useful on the move if you’re on a mobile. Seriously, it’s FREE so why not get involved. You literally have no excuse.

Does your website grab attention for a call to action? Do you have a bland looking “Call Now” button, do people even know it’s there, it’s worth investing in heat mapping your website in case you’re curious about this. Once again, if I can’t see it, don’t expect me to ring you.

Does your website take longer to load than it took for the dinosaurs to die? Simply put, if your website takes longer than the average attention span of a goldfish to load then you’ve lost me. This could be down to heavy sized imagery or just a bad server. If I can’t see you, I’m going to go back to my search and try the next business. Google will provide you with page load speed data through Google Page Speed Insights or Google Analytics.

Is your domain long winded and unattractive? Poor domains will just make the experience seem less intuitive and poorly planned. Put it this way, the general public pay attention to a lot of details about your business, imagine them trying to recommend you to a friend and they have to recite 120 characters which for whatever reason they have to spell out…. Well I’m bored already and unless it’s hilarious or just memorable I’m not going to go to your website. The more important side of this is that Google will take this domain into account when they are looking at scoring you up against your competition and you stand to get marked down in Quality Score (as seen in Google Ads or AdWords). However naturally you will find it still has an effect e.g. is much better than it doesn’t look that much different but think about how the brain ‘abbreviates’ things to make it more memorable and easier to recite at the flick of a thought.

Written by Gareth Torrance

Hello there. I'm Gareth, the Search Engine Marketing Lead at Brave. With almost a decade of experience in PPC and SEO, I've seen everything from Pandas and Penguins to the horrible time that was Mobilegeddon. As a Google Ads Certified Google Specialist, I have lived through almost every major shift in the industry! And that makes me feel old.

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