Google Bot Searching

In a world of millions of websites and billions of Google searches, even the coolest products and sites are hidden in the masses.  Sometimes it feels like you will never be found.  While a concentrated and continuous effort of SEO can increase your chances of being discovered, there are also a couple of quick things you can do to jump up in the rankings. While this information may seem obvious to seasoned SEO’s, it should serve as a subtle reminder about 3 simple search engine optimization tasks that can greatly increase your chances of being seen.

Robots.txt

While most of your content may seem unique and fresh to you, search engine bots only spend fractions of a second reading and indexing your entire site.  A robots.txt file guides the bots through your site, informing them what should be indexed, what should be skipped, and what content is most valuable.  If you have a robots.txt file on your site, you may be surprised to discover that pages, images, and folders are being withheld from search engines.  While the robots.txt file is essential and helpful in search engine optimization, it can prove harmful if it disallows valuable pages from being indexed. There are many SEO tools that will make it easy to fix these crawling issues and provide more accurate indexing, expectantly bringing more people to your site.

301 Redirect

A 301 redirect is a process of forwarding one URL to a different URL for both users and search engines.  Google and other search engines are looking for sites with unique content and “bait” that drives people to use their search engine. If your site is crawled as www.bigleap.com and bigleap.com your content is being read twice and is therefore less unique. Not only this, but your site is now receiving page rank for two individual landing pages.  A simple correction would be coding a 301 redirect so the bigleap.com URL automatically forwards the user to www.bigleap.com URL. This process is extremely simple and can dramatically increase your site attention.

Verify Google and Bing Local Listings

Over the past year, search engines have become increasingly more localized in their search results.  As users become more localized in their searches, Google and Bing want to make sure users of their search engines are finding real businesses with real addresses.  While this process of verifying your actual location doesn’t take a lot of time, it can be extremely detrimental to your rankings if no physical address is verified.  Spend the few minutes it takes on the phone with a local listing specialist and almost immediately increase your local rankings.

Overall, these 3 steps shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes for someone who is familiar with search engine optimization.  While they are simple tasks, they can dramatically increase the power of your website in the eyes of the search engine bots, and will surely be worth your time. It’s time to stop hiding in the masses.

Jamie Bates