webIf you have a website and hope to attract online customers to your online store, you need to be visible in search engines. Organic search is essential for the survival of online businesses so how can you improve your ranking?

To improve your standings in organic search results you need visibility. Below, we will look at the three vital ingredients you need to improve your visibility in organic search results.

Optimise for local search intent

Although the appeal of the worldwide web gives you the potential to sell to an international audience, the vast majority of online businesses essentially rely on local trade. Therefore local SEO is vital.

Optimising your site for local SEO not only means you may appear in search results when the end-user names a location in their search terms.  Given the geo-location features available, and data from devices available to search engines when users speak, travel near, or search for something generic, but with local intent, your site or business may also show without the location being entered with the query.  Devices also contain additional features such as the accelerometer or pedometer’s which are built in, and provide data such as the speed at which a search engine users is moving, and in which direction.  All of these insights potentially help the search engine to understand the intent and informational need of the user, even before they have performed a search.  Being aware of, and optimising your projects for these things will provide valuable traffic for bricks and mortar businesses, and potentially a huge advantage for the ‘little guy’ against the larger pure-play online only brands.  Furthermore, a search engine study reveals that 50% of users with local intent will call or visit your store within 24 hours.

Publish content

The main driver behind improving organic search is content. If you want search engines to recognise you as a trustworthy and authoritative source to whom they can direct users, you have to publish content which proves you are an expert in your field who has authority and can be trusted.

Maintaining a blog is vital. Every time you publish a piece of content, search engine crawlers visit and score your site. Disseminating content on social media networks will also attract traffic and help improve your ranking – providing the content is good enough of course.

Paid Search

Okay, paid search is not organic search, but it can lead to better rankings which ultimately improves your visibility in organic search results. If you are new to online business management or SEO, the chances are your website is not ranking very highly in search engine results, thus you have limited visibility.

Paid ads will raise your online visibility and hopefully drive traffic to your website. However, using Google Adwords has advantages and disadvantages; it can be expensive and you do not make any ROI, and end-users are becoming frustrated with online ads.

The high majority of search engine users tend to ignore paid search results and click on sites that feature in organic search results. The reason for this is because sites appearing in organic results are typically better quality than paid search and offer a better user-experience.

However, if your website does offer a great user-experience, paid searches could pay dividends. Statistics show that around 20% of end-users click on paid ads when they see something interesting, so if you have a strong ad that attracts clicks you will get traffic.

Organic search results pay the best dividends for online businesses, but if you do not feature on the first page, it is difficult to attract web traffic through organic channels.

But that doesn’t mean you should stop trying. Until you are more visible in search results there are other means of attracting web traffic, but your ultimate goal should be to feature in Google’s top ten.