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Getting found in search requires a strong web presence. Knowing the steps to creating that strong web presence can give you that advantage in search. Below you'll find a 10 step guide to a successful web presence.

What businesses often think their client can see

Many businesses have an image of their web presence based on outdated ideas and outdated practices. They imagine that their web presence looks like a modern luxury car that is breezing down the road.

The sad fact is though, that the vast majority of businesses do not really look at their web presence from the client user perspective. They do not stand back and really examine what they are doing, often because they just do not know what it is they are supposed to be looking at.

CC Image courtesy of  NRMA Motoring and Services  on Flickr

CC Image courtesy of NRMA Motoring and Services on Flickr

What their potential client actually sees

Most web presences are out of date, in a hard to find place on the internet and overcrowded with way too much information. This image is a reflection of what a typical businesses web presence actually looks like.

We predict that in the next few years, the single most important factor that decides whether a business is successful will be the quality of its web presence. Some will invest in their web presence and grow, whilst others will neglect their it and die because they cannot compete in search.

CC Image courtesy of  Dahlee_pl  on Flickr

CC Image courtesy of Dahlee_pl on Flickr

Making the change, get an MOT.

Making the change, the first step is to actually take stock of your web presence. To take an MOT so to speak. When you face up to the reality of the quality of your web presence and its impact on your business, only then can you start to make the changes that will bring success to your business online.

We offer a free service to UK businesses which is a web presence audit.

10 step recipe for a strong web presence

1. Business Card Video

Introduce yourself, a business card video will enable you to communicate your identity to a potential client, they will get to see what type of company you are, what your core values are and see what your expertise is. You can see an example of this on our home page: SME Heroes

2. Responsive Website

Make sure your website works on tablets and smart phones so it is not penalised in search, mobile search is starting to overtake traditional search as a source of traffic to your website.That means if someone is comparing two businesses on a smart phone or tablet, the business with a responsive design will be the website that is likely to get placed in the higher position in search, Google will actual penalise a website if it thinks it is going to affect the users experience in search because it does not work on a tablet or smartphone correctly.

3. Website Design

Your design and branding should resonate with your target audience. Simple clear design and branding will enable your client to connect with your brand, especially when it comes to creating a niche product for a niche market. Looking at your key audience demographic and designing around what they would expect to see, will enable them to be drawn in to your key message.

4. Website Flow

There should be a flow through your website that leads to a specific call to action. When a potential client arrives on your website and is hit by lots and lots of different decisions to make, they get confused and bounce off. Typically there is a single call to action that is the primary response you want to draw from your audience. As they go deeper into your website, they can be exposed to different calls to action, but the primary call to action should be front and centre.

5. Google Authorship

Setting up Google Authorship is a key requirement for a strong presence in Google's new semantic search, the principles of personal authority, integrity and trust is at the core of a strong web presence.With the ever expanding roll-out of Google Semantic Search and the social impact it is making, the importance of setting up Authorship is paramount.

6. Google+

A strong Google+ presence is going to be an increasingly strong factor in creating a web presence for your business. If you picture your web presence as the car, your training on how to use that presence as the "driving lessons", (which we provide as part of the SME Web Presence Pack), then Google+ is the fuel that drives the car.The power of Google+ is little understood by most businesses, but its launch is the single most important event in the history of Web Presence Marketing.

7. Long Tail Marketing

Creating a long tail marketing strategy is at the heart of a successful web presence. Knowing what type of long tail content you need to place on which long tail platforms is key when it comes to creating content strategies and calendars.This is one of the key elements you need to decide on when formulating your web presence marketing strategy, as it drives everything. Explore our free training on this subject here.

8. Short Tail Marketing

Driving traffic back to your long tail marketing with short tail marketing is an essential part of a successful web presence, re purposing content so that it can be used again and in different ways will help you get the attention of your potential client.

9. Content Creation

Good content creation, creating useful resource for your potential client is the secret sauce in your recipe. Knowing what type of content will work for your target audience and what will draw them to you is a very important aspect of the process.

10. Social Engagement

Engaging with your potential audience, talking to them, helping them, advising them. All of these activities will create a natural depth of relationship with those that might want to use your services. Prioritising depth of engagement rather than breadth of engagement will help you target your niche client base.

If you would like some help or a discussion about how we can help you create your own recipe, then please do not hesitate to get in touch.

AuthorMark Timberlake