If you are like many of the small businesses we work with you probably have a website built with WordPress. That’s awesome, because with a little training you can control a significant portion of your online marketing. But a good website is only the beginning. Today we’ll take a look at three software products which help you expand your online strategy.
Over the past decade, Google has moved from being a search engine with a single purpose to a multi-purpose online software provider offering options for email, social media, business listing services and reviews. One of the most powerful is their Analytics tool which will give you an overview of your current web marketing performance. Before you can take advantage of Google Analytics you need to answer a few questions. Do you:
- Know if Analytics is installed on your website?
- Have access to your Google Webmaster tools?
- Have a way to edit you webpages?
If you answered no to these questions, you may want to check out these helpful articles from Google covering how to set up Analytics on your website.
Once Google Analytics is properly installed, information about visitors to your site will start to populate within 24 hours. You can use the Analytics dashboard to see how many people are visiting your website, where they come from (social media, other websites or advertisements) and how long they stay. You can also study what people do when they visit, which pages they view, what they look at first and how often they complete a conversion form. These measurements will show you how well your marketing is working to drive traffic and how effective your website navigation is at encouraging viewers to learn more about you.
The Yext marketing software platform offers small business owners several different options for increasing their visibility across the web. When you first enter the site, you’re met with a free citation checking tool. I’ve written about the importance of accurate business citations for local search before. The free Yext report is a great place to start your exploration of these listings.
Simply input your business name and phone number the way it is typically used across the web. (A quick side note, always use the exact same format for your address and phone listings. Search engines value this consistency.) Once you enter your data, Yext will spit out a report of your listings on all the major aggregate and review sites which looks like this:
Yext offers to fix inaccurate listings or submit new listings for you at a cost, but here’s a pro-tip: Do it yourself. Go through the list to find the most relevant sites. If you are in Indianapolis, feel free to skip the Montreal business directory. If you’re not listed or your information is inaccurately represented, go to the site and submit fixes or updates. It’s time consuming, but it’s well worth the effort if your company is accurately represented on each site. Best of all, it’s free!
Open Site Explorer
It is called “the web” for a reason. The connections between sites help people and search engines identify related content. The more high quality links to your site, the greater the chance people will find you. Want to know who are building links to your website every month? There’s no better way to check if your newly published content is being noticed and linked to by other sites than using the free site exploring functions of Open Site Explorer. Developed by Moz (formerly SEOMoz), this tool allows webmasters to track new links built back to their site across the web. Open Site Explorer uses a complex mathematical formula to determine the quality of new links to your site from a page (called Page Authority) and ranks the websites they come from (using a metric called Domain Authority) on a 100 point scale.
In general, the higher the Domain Authority and Page Authority of website giving you inbound links, the more trustworthy and visible you become in the world of search. Open Site Explorer gives searches a minimum amount of free website analysis searches everyday, so it’s a useful tool if you only own one website with a few internal pages and a blog. For unlimited analysis, larger businesses may want to consider buying a subscription to the tool.
Tools won’t do the work for you
Each of these software services will help you improve your website and make it more visible when prospects are looking for a company like yours. However, they won’t do all the work. You will still need to spend time evaluating the data and making decisions on what to do with the information.
Need help? Give us a call!
Once you implement these different tools into your marketing strategy and beef up your small business website, make sure to take our website self-audit to see how you stand up against your competitors: