We live in the digital information age where every day brings a new trend, a new development, or a new algorithm. All these things are necessary to assist in advancing the digital landscape for both business and personal use. For business owners trying to stay competitive, this can often be confusing and difficult to understand. A prime example of constantly changing developments and algorithms is Google. Because of these constant changes or frequent updates, the way you use Google as a Black business owner can make or break your search engine optimization (SEO) efforts.
Even though in 2019, Google added the “Black Owned Business” label to its search engine, not taking the time to understand how the algorithm works on your own website can negatively affect your visibility online, such as how you show up in search results, the traffic you attract, whether you are converting visitors to buyers and, ultimately, your bottom line.
First, let’s start by understanding what the Google updates are.
The algorithm updates that Google rolls out are intended to benefit end user experiences with search-related issues including the ability to find information on the web. Google examines every website’s SERP (Search Engine Results Page), ranking it for credibility, expertise, and ease of use.
As a Black-owned business, where and how we show up online is critical to not only our survival, but to reaching the RIGHT clients and customers. Here are four tips I’ve put together to help you to feel more at ease.
- Keep Yourself Informed
Google rolls out major and minor updates (with minor updates happening more frequently) without any announcements. When this happens, Google will notify the public on their social media pages and in a press release. The best way to keep yourself informed of new updates is by monitoring your website and its ranking in search engines. The last thing you want is for your customer to find a glitch on your website before you do. Viewing and quickly user-testing your website should be part of your daily routine.
- Content is King
One of the best ways to keep yourself ahead of update releases so they don’t negatively affect your business is to make sure you are only using high-quality, converting content that’s easy to navigate. Content is and always will be king. While there are certainly many things you can do on your own, creating the type of content that Google algorithm loves is best left to an SEO expert. It’s a lot less expensive than having them manage your entire SEO strategy. They will develop content that keeps you visible, relevant, and gets through to your customers and site visitors.
- A Recovery Strategy is Necessary for DIYers
If you plan on managing your own SEO, then it’s best if you develop a recovery strategy in the event that an update affects your business. There are plenty of resources online to help you manage, create, and grow your content calendar, as well as troubleshoot any problems that might arise from SEO updates. You will also want to create a plan that allows you to reverse the results of any Google updates that negatively affect your business on your own.
- Hire a Digital Marketing Expert
If you feel like this is not something you want to take any chances with, it’s best if you outsource your SEO strategy to an expert in digital marketing – typically, an SEO strategist or specialist. These services come in all sizes, for all demographics, and all levels of expertise, so choose the one that works best for not only your budget, but also for your level of understanding and preference.
For those of you going the Do-it-Yourself route, start by looking up SEO best practices to follow as a beginner and convert any low-quality content as quickly as possible. Just plug that phrase into your search window and several helpful websites will show up.