Each and every day hundreds of new businesses make the decision to expand their marketing efforts. One of the most common expansions comes in the form of a new website. While those that grew up on the Internet think every business is online that is simply not the case. When creating a business plan some people assume there are other, more important, aspects to a business than building a website. In fact, some businesses want to make certain they are in the black before the investment in a website is possible.
With a company or brand website being an investment it stands to reason that business owners should wonder how long it will take to see some return on investment (ROI). Like most business propositions, a website is not going to start creating sales or customers on the first day.
Google’s bot is an algorithm designed by Google to crawl the internet and index all the visited websites and web pages for later processing. The function of the spider is to provide faster, more accurate searches with less spam. In addition, Google’s spider is also used for automating maintenance tasks on given web sites, such as checking links, validating HTML code, and aggregating e-mail addresses for spam checks. More generally, the Google Bot or other search engine web crawlers start with a list of URLs/seeds to visit. As the crawler visits these URLs, it identifies all the hyperlinks in the page and adds them to the list of URLs to visit, in which case they are recursively visited according to a set of policies.
The way Google Search finds new websites and new content is through a crawling spider or web crawler. These millions of spiders scour the web in search of the newest content that has been gone live. This content can be in the form of photography, video, text or audio. Spiders crawl like natural spiders crawl, on a natural web. When a website is linked to another website the spider will crawl from one link to the next. Eventually, at the end of the day the spider has crawled as many possible pieces of content to be crawled and ranked in search.
With a brand new website there is a good chance that it will have few, if any, links directed to it. This is one of the reasons I always suggest creating social profiles and linking to a website from any and all social profiles. If a business owner has a Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest or Instagram account it’s necessary for a number of reasons to link to the brand new website and link the website to the social profiles by way of social integration via a WordPress plugin. If it’s a local brick and mortar business, it’s also important to claim your business in local directories like Yelp, Superpages, Localeze, YP etc. This will help the spiders to crawl to that web much quicker. GetListed is a great service for viewing and organizing your listings effort.
From personal experience, I tend to see brand new websites crawled, indexed and ranked in Google search within two to four weeks. Some of the business websites I have worked with have been crawled or ranked within a few days. As a general rule of thumb, I would give it a month to receive the first Google spider crawl. Just because the spider has crawled a website it does not mean it will rank for competitive keywords or any keywords for that matter.
Competitive keyword phrases can be very difficult to rank for; especially when a business has a new website or a very shallow website. A keyword phrase such as “Toronto Real Estate” takes a very valuable resource to rank for. It is possible to show up on the first page of Google search for “Christopher Arthur Hughes Toronto Real Estate” without considerable resources and authority. Take away “Christopher Arthur Hughes” and the keyword phrase becomes competitive meaning a company or individual must provide value for Google to rank the website near the top.
Another question I receive often from business owners is, “How long will it take to rank for my keywords?” Unfortunately, there is no exact answer to this question. The more competitive the keyword phrase the longer it is going to take to rank and especially to get on the front page. Also, it is very important to understand that the Google algorithm ranks content based on its value. If the content on a brand new website is shallow and sporadic and there is no evidence of social engagement which will assist in earning inbound links, there is a high likelihood it will not rank for months, years or maybe ever.
To help get the momentum going, something I suggest to a business is create content that is long form. Long form content offers much more value than short form, 400+ word, blog posts. Long form content allows a business to create a resource that keeps the attention of the searcher for longer than a few seconds. One way to think about it is a thesis or college term paper. The Google algorithm was created off the idea of a college thesis with links being references in the bibliography.
If Google’s search algorithm was based off a thesis why not write business content in the same form as a thesis? I have had tremendous success when doing this. Creating an abstract or opening paragraph that informs the reader about the resource is useful. Under the abstract is a table of contents as it relates to the body of the resource. Based on your coding skills you can even make these table of contents titles clickable. If you do not have advanced coding skills have no fear. By just creating the table of contents you are doing your part to help the reader.
Business owners often do not have the time to write a thesis every day, every week or even every month. What I strongly suggest is to start the framework of a long form resource and update when you get the time. Adding 400+ words once a week will help to create a very long and valuable resource for the visitors of the website. Also, strong copywriters are worth the investment. It’s also important to add fresh quality content, not just build on a single blog post.
Now that business owners know they can rank in Google search for specific keyword phrases what should they do? First it would be wise to create a website that has a blog interface available. This will allow the business owner or technology team to easily update content without jumping through hoops. WordPress is the CMS that we prefer at A Nerd’s World, but there are several blog options available. After the website has been created it is time to publish content and begin sharing on Social Media.
Once content has been published it is important to remain consistent. Do not feel as if a business needs to publish a blog post a day but the more quality content the better. Come up with a system such as two blog posts or two updates a week. This will tell Google you are serious about your web presence if you are creating quality not just going after quantity. After content has been published it will be a few weeks before searchers start to find your business through keyword phrases. Shortly after publishing a few pieces of content it never hurts to link to the content or resource from a social media account such as Google+, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest or Instagram.
To summarize. Build a website with a blog. Publish great original content consistently and link from your social profiles naturally. If you would like our help building your next WordPress website please let me know.
Chris A. Hughes