Ok you probably think that I have lost the plot by talking about animals and marketing but I can assure you that these creatures are highly important to your hypnosis marketing and to Google. So what the hell am I on about? Lets start from the top. When you enter a search query into the Google search bar to ask to get information the results that get returned to you are based around a sophisticated algorithm. Just some of the factors that determine which websites you get to see include:
- Mobile Friendliness
- Location and Proximity to you
- Site and page quality
- Web history
- SSL Certificates and on and on the list goes.
In fact there are around 200 different ways in which google decides what they want to show you not including the information they show you in their ads. Having a basic understanding of the algorithm is essential as without this knowledge it can be hard to create a website that gets found. Most therapists just create a website they like the look of with a web designer but this is a perfect way to disappear and never be found by the general public. My online course How to Turn Your Therapy Website Into a Client Magnet gives you many of the basics so that you can start to optimise your website to get found.
The Google Zoo
So what has this got to do with animals? Well Google has a mission to give searchers the most useful information they can and that means that they are always tweaking and adjusting search results so that their users get the best experience. They also work on ways to close loopholes that allow spammy or low quality websites into the search results. In recent times these updates have been given code names and you guessed it Panda, Penguin and Possum are the names given to some of the major changes that have happened in the past few years.
Having a basic understanding of these changes is essential because if your website is on the wrong side of the changes then your business could vanish overnight from the search engines. A perfect example of this was the company Interflora in 2013 who paid for newspaper advertorials to link to their company so they could get a boost in the search engines. Google found out and the next thing Interflora disappeared from the search results. Imagine how many millions they lost whilst they frantically tried to recover their website.
Just as with Interflora the same things are happening to your websites and in many cases you are probably unaware that your hypnosis marketing efforts are being destroyed because of things you or your website developer has done to your site. So here are some of the basics that you need to consider before creating content or links to your website.
The Panda updates revolve around demoting websites which are of poor quality. This could mean websites that contain lots of spam or sites that simply have very little unique information to offer. It also penalises websites that contain duplicate content. That means if you have two websites you cannot repeat any of the information from one and place it on another.
The Penguin updates tend to concern themselves with links created by spammers to give their websites a boost. Now if you have outsourced your SEO work to someone else how do you know what they are doing is actually helping or hindering your website. I have come across many companies who have paid for SEO services and the person doing the work has built a lot of rubbish links to their sites that could get them penalised. Also never be tempted to buy backlinks from one of the companies that I regularly see advertising on the web. This is a perfect way to destroy your website.
Possum is an update which has happened in only the last month and impacted how local search results were shown. Previously a business really needed a central location in a town or city for it to appear highly in Google maps or the organic search results. Since Possum you can rank for an area if you are outside the town centre provided your website shows that you are offering services to people in that location. This update is ongoing as we speak so the full impact is still not known.
It is worth noting that many of these code word updates have a number of revisions. Which means you will see a Panda 1, 2, 3 and 4 as Google becomes more sophisticated. There are also other codewords including Hummingbird which is the code word for the Google algorithm itself and Pigeon for local SEO results.
Keep Yourself Informed
Having a basic understanding of search engine optimisation and how Google decides to show your website is vital if you have a website. Without this knowledge you could find your business impacted overnight simply because you got some of the basics wrong. Whilst you may not be an Interflora it could be enough to significantly harm your income.
Oh and for those of you who still have not got a Mobile website I suggest you do so asap. Rumours are that at some point in the near future Google may simply stop showing non mobile friendly websites in the search results at all. Over 50% of searches are currently done on mobile devices so it is obvious why they are thinking of making this change. Don’t bury your head in the sand, ignore hypnosis marketing and hope the problem will go away. My online course has information on where to create a new website for under $200 which is a small price to pay to avoid vanishing from your potential customers.