The SEO Promised Land: Google’s Front Page, Part One

The SEO Promised Land: Google’s Front Page, Part One

Everyone wants to get on Google’s Front Page. If you run a website, chances are you’ve received a personalized email that reads something like this:

“Dear Business Owner,

I was browsing the internet today and came across your site! I really enjoyed your content but I noticed that despite your excellent articles, your page doesn’t show up in many search results. I would be happy to provide my services in making your site a page one search result on Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Get on Google’s front page. Contact me today for a quote!”

You’ve probably also received similar emails promising risk-free bitcoin investments, guaranteed dating results, one million tax-free Nigerian dollars, or a pill that promises to increase the size of your… immune system. Here’s the thing, though… with very, very few exceptions, all the emails above—including the guaranteed search results—belong in the same folder: spam.

It would be wonderful if one click and a few dollars was all it took to get on Google’s front page, but if that were the case, everyone would be doing it. In reality, reaching that goal takes a lot more time, effort, and strategy.

Can someone really sell me the front page of Google?

What I find helpful is to break down exactly what it is that different people mean when they refer to the front page of Google.

If it’s a person who’s trying to sell me something

They’re usually referring to the paid ads that populate beside the search results. There is nothing wrong with paying to get results on that coveted first page, but that is Search Engine Marketing, and is not tied to organic search results. Google is also constantly on the hunt for those trying to scam its search algorithms, operations such as link networks and link farms. If you’re considering Search Engine Marketing, best to get some help. That is also a service we provide.

But when website owners talk to me about Google

They may be talking about the same front page, but from an entirely different perspective. Organic search results are extremely valuable, and since 90% of Google users don’t move on to page two of search results, getting in the initial list is very, very valuable.

The challenge is… that list is organic, meaning it’s based on a variety of factors such as popularity of a site, the site’s code, SEO keywords, how many other sites link to that site, how up-to-date the site is, and so on. (I’ve written a few blogs on the topic, such as SEO for small businesses, maintaining SEO, and SEO for service area businesses. Check them out!)

So where do I start?

Good SEO takes time. To really get started on it, you have to choose between self-education and hiring a professional. Self-education is not very exciting, and a lot harder than responding to a single email, but remember, if the front page was an easy destination, everyone would be there. Study up on keywords, meta content, tags, and other SEO touchstones. Even if you hire an SEO expert (which many website owners have and should consider doing for best results), knowing the lingo and the basic idea behind SEO will help make the process a lot smoother… and will help you know if you made the right decision in who you hired.

Next week, we’ll dig a little more into one of the most potent ingredients of Google success stories—mobile friendly sites! But until then…

Questions? Ready to Get Started?

If you have questions or would like to get started, please give us a call at (312) 834-7787 or visit our website to request a free quote and consultation.