Is your Web site generating leads for your business and driving customers to your doors? Is your site reaching the right people at the right time? A well-designed, functional Web site is simply not enough anymore – especially in a competitive market such as New York City. The lion’s share of people in the City aren’t searching your specific business by name; so why should your site only cater to those that do? When it comes to online marketing, the word on the street is hyperlocal. Your Web site must be designed to “go mobile” and target your prospects right down to the neighborhood level. It must also be strategically enhanced to drive the customers who are looking for what you offer through your doors. Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is the key tactic to putting these prospects in front of your products and/or services.
Search Engine Optimization in New York City: How it works
Say a group of college students who live in Brooklyn take the subway into Manhattan to see an art exhibit in Greenwich Village. Once they leave the gallery, they want a cup of coffee or dinner at a Thai place they haven’t tried. So they use their smart phones to search for the “best Thai restaurant in Greenwich village.” If your site has been in the skilled hands of a marketing firm with a talented SEO consultant, your restaurant will come up on the first page of results, with a good review or two, a nifty design, an estimate of what dinner will cost, and how to get to your front door (walking, biking or taking mass transit). Before you can say, “Hyperlocal,” you’ve got a set of new regular customers, who are likely to rave about you all over social media to their friends in Bed-Stuy and Queens. It’s a win-win.
Begin with an SEO audit and keyword research
Search Engine Optimization begins with a complete analysis of your current Web site, if you have one. Then comes the thorough research to determine precisely who the buyers for your products and services are. An analysis of your competitors and their Web sites offers insight into what they are trying to do in terms of SEO. Finally, an SEO consultant must uncover what it the prospect is entering in the search engines when they are ready to buy: for example, “bagels in Yonkers,” or “cheapest shuttles to LaGuardia,” or “most unique tours of New York City.” A reader coming to your site and a buyer coming to your site are two completely different things. You want the latter, and a search engine marketing specialist can optimize your site to attract the buyers.
Optimizing a Web site is not just a quick fix. It is an ongoing, iterative process, where a good search engine marketing (SEM) team learns from the results of the previous steps and adapts the next steps accordingly. Part of that process is to create a detailed profile of your potential clients, in New York and the surrounding areas, which helps to understand what search terms are best suited for your site. Keywords strategically placed on a site’s pages help determine where those pages rank in search engines. Some keywords can deliver an unbelievable amount of prospects who are in a critical stage of the buying cycle, while an astonishingly similar phrase may deliver people who are looking for information about a completely unrelated topic. An SEO consultant in New York City can split those fine hairs and discover the intent of those behind the searches, which in turn, will yield you greater success.
NYC surgeons and lawyers need SEO, too
People understand that search engines help them find things they are looking for. What people often do not understand is how the search engines prioritize sites based on what is typed into the search bar. Search engines use specialized mathematical formulas called algorithms, which are frequently updated, to choose which Web sites will show on their front page. As you can guess, these algorithms are extremely complex and highly confidential. How exactly these algorithms “rank” Web pages depends on a vast and ever-growing number of factors. However, SEO specialists, through constant studying, researching, training, and (most importantly) practice, keep up-to-date on which factors are the most important, and which factors have fallen out of favor with the search engines. For example, a prospect may use search to find an experienced attorney in New York City that handles certain types of cases. Another user may want to find a cosmetic dentist in Manhattan that specializes in implant surgery. An SEO expert has an in-depth knowledge and understanding of what search engine factors determine which doctor and lawyer sites show up on the front page.
Don’t be afraid of change
An SEO consultant must also look at the current structure of a site to determine if changes need to be made. Some content management systems are better than others when it comes to adding keywords and ranking well in search engines. Older sites were not built with search engine ranking in mind. Your site may be outdated and need not only a new look, but a new content management system, and a new architecture.
You should be wary of SEO companies that guarantee rankings, allege a special relationship with search engine companies or promise priority submission to search engines. Search engines simply do not work that way. There is no priority submit for the major search engines such as Google, Bing, and Yahoo! Also be cautious of content that has little to do with your site or products. These businesses will email you spam and promise rankings for a very low rate. This simply does not work.
SEO Experts in New York, North Carolina and beyond
Biz Boost Pros will work with your New York-based business to put in place a search strategy that will include:
- A comprehensive review of your existing site for on-page SEO factors and Google penalties
- A link-building plan to help get you to the top of Search Engine Results
- A social media strategy to help you gain customers into your circle
- A public relations plan to get the word out about your products and services locally.
Biz Boost Pros can help you achieve the desired results for your business. Whether you have an old site or you’re in need of a new site, we can help. The result will be a higher-ranking Website with precisely targeted traffic and a riot of red-hot leads coming your way.