Have Search Results Become Unpredictable?

Have Search Results Become Unpredictable?

Ron Haugen (the author of the great movie clip about finding a Saturn repair shop) and I had a chat about Google plus and its repercussions on search results. Over the course of the conversation the following questions emerged, and we thought questions and answers might be worth sharing. Here they come: 1. Word out there is that if you do not have a Google + account, your business’ search engine ranking will suffer. Is this a valid concern ? Absolutely valid, and if you don’t buy at least Ads worth $500 per month with Google, you won’t have any chance getting on even page #2 in Google search. I am just messing with you and I am sorry, but the temptation to mock fear based sales tactics is so high I couldn’t resist. Lets get as accurate as I can: Your business search rankings won’t suffer if you don’t have a Google Plus account.  What you should consider though: If you can engage your prospective and existing customers in a meaningful conversation online, share valuable content they are interested in on Google Plus and earn ‘+1’ clicks in return, Google will consider your ‘social ranking’ as one of many parameters in determining your search ranking. In other words, having an account alone doesn’t help much – you need to use it to engage in a meaningful online conversation with your customers. It does make sense, doesn’t it? Just like real life, the more people talk with and about you, the more attention by searching motorists you deserve. 2. Is it possible that Google users will see different search engine results when logged in...
Reviews Featured on Your Website Are ALL on Google!

Reviews Featured on Your Website Are ALL on Google!

Reviews assist in getting potentially new customers to trust you. You knew that already. Dominance on Google page#1 assists new customers finding you. You knew that as well. Do you know how effective these can be when combined? See the image below. And did I mention that Google picks up your review stats off your website and ours to show it to prospective customers (blue arrows in picture above)? See for yourself above OR type your business name in Google and enjoy (assuming we designed and manage your website, of course). Uwe...
Success Metrics You Shouldn’t Overlook

Success Metrics You Shouldn’t Overlook

I have been asked by shop owners and industry experts alike, how it would be possible to make Google rankings and reviews tangible. So tangible that a decision to invest in SEO, a website, review collection etc. can be justified and tailored to the shop’s needs. Before I do that, lets have a look at why Google is so important. Just follow the trend comparing Yellow Pages and Google Maps as search items in the image below between 2004 and today. Do I need to say more about why Google search should not be overlooked for local businesses?   Now let’s set the baseline for a realistic look at the power of Google Search. Although not an easy task, since trillions of factors influence the numbers – which influence you as local business owner – I was looking over our stats and zeroed in on a virtual area, representing “most likely town”. In “most likely town” live approximately 60,000 people driving 20,000 vehicles every day to work. The commuter traffic in and out of town is balanced out, the median household income is about $50k and the age profile looks as shown below. There is a healthy portion of 25-55 year olds, but also some college students, all of who use the internet regularly.   Second, I took the number of our search database for similar towns and selected a few shops, where we measure website traffic, appointment requests through the shops’ websites, and track phone numbers. I determined how websites and business listings, which are not highly ranked stack up against well optimized websites, and I compared those...
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