First of all, Merry Christmas Eve! In our minds “the work never stops”, so here we are. Our work revolves around the internet and working with search engines. They never stop, so we never stop. Okay that’s a lie, we will probably take tomorrow and Boxing Day off, but we will be back before the end of the year. Our aim is to spread excellent SEO throughout Derby so this means a bit of festive work before the end of the year.
We wanted to drop off this Christmas gift. How can you tell if people are actually (already, right now, every month) searching for your services or products online? And, you don’t have to speak to a company like ours to find out! I will give you the tools so you can see how many people are searching for your product/services yourself and open your eyes to the internet world.
Many people who do not work with the online world have a scarily limited knowledge of how everything works. It’s fine to plead ignorance but you are only hurting yourself. The internet is the biggest thing to happen to the human race by far. Soon this will be out shadowed only by incredible things like artificial intelligence (which is looming!).
So use this article if your eyes are closed to the online world. Everything is happening online and this is a good reason for you to read on. If you offer a local service, you need to get internet savvy before the competition leave you behind.
Let’s jump into a couple of tools you can start using. Don’t worry! They’re easy for anyone to use. None of this stuff is rocket science.
Two excellent tools we use have helped us and our clients make a lot of money together. These tools should be known by most people that provide SEO service so this might not be of any interest to you online professionals.
However, the article will be of great interest to someone that wants to know if anyone is actually looking for their service online and is not very technical.
In other words – these tools will tell you if being high (your website being on the first page) will actually benefit you, meaning more sales and more money for your company.
You might have a very niche contracting skill that gets little to no searches through Google or you might have a high in demand service (I.e. roofing). Clearly being at the top of Google for a search term like ‘roofing Derby’ is going to be valuable, but being at the top of Google for ‘fence resin Derby’ probably won’t have many searches. As a result, having your website appear on the first page for the roofing term will see people who need roofing in this area click and (if you have your website right) call you for a quote.
On the other hand, you could hire a company like ours to get your website to the top of the resin search term and the whole thing be a pointless exercise?
But why is it pointless?! You’re at the TOP of Google!
It is only valuable to have your website on the first page of Google for search terms that people ACTUALLY search.
Or else you might as well hang up a poster about your resin services in the middle of a field. No one is there. You’re at the top of somewhere no one goes. You see?
Be at (your website, that is) at the top of Google for the roofing search term and it’s valuable. This is like having a shop in the busiest part of town. You have put your name where people actually go. Better yet, people are LOOKING for your service.
Another metric worth knowing…
Another metric we can measure is how difficult a search term is to get to the first page of Google for / improve your ranking on. Getting to the top of the resin search term would be easy as there is no competition. Getting to the top of the roofing search term would be harder as people are actively trying to get and stay on page one so people see their website.
This is important as you can determine the cost of our service against your expected results in the timeframe we give. To illustrate – getting to the first page for a roofing term might be extremely easy, not take that much time and have a lot of searches running through it. This would make investing in improving your ranking for said keyword highly valuable.
For the person with a very niche service where it would be hard to rise up the rankings, it would take a lot of time and there aren’t many searches relevant to your service anyway would deem that investing in ranking improvements is not worth the squeeze.
We are always completely honest with clients and expectations as we do not want to be bitten in the future. It would be quite easy to dress up how well being at the top of Google(!!!!!1) will perform incredibly well for your business.
What’s the use in this though if the results do not deliver as promised? No one wins. We lose a client and gain a bad name and our client loses time money and energy. If we don’t think our service will benefit a client we simply relay this to them.
Anyway, back to the tools
So those are the two key uses for the tools we will share with you.
- Finding out how many people search for your service.
- Seeing how ‘hard’ it is to get to your website to the front page of that search term. The difficulty or hardness to get to the top is given as an easy to understand number between 1-100.
The first tool is called Google Keyword Planner.
Type in Google Keyword Planner and you will find it as the first result in Google, or click on the underlined text above. You might need to make an account.
Once created, find the tools section and look for Keyword Planner.
You can now experiment by typing in different search terms to see how many people are searching for your service each month. The number for the average amount of searches is always given as a monthly metric.
If you were a roofer from Derby you might type in variations of ‘roofing Derby’, roofers in Derbyshire’ and so on.
The planner will then tell you how many monthly searches are coming as a result of these searches.
Google will also give you relevant search terms to what you typed in incase you didn’t search exactly what everyone else is searching.
If you’re seeing hundreds of monthly searches related to services you carry out in your area – that’s a really good sign.
You are going to need hundreds of searches for something in order to get any work from it (usually, search metrics is a long topic but this is a good general rule of thumb if this is your first time looking). For roofing + city, you would hope for multiple hundreds. You would expect this to be high for a couple of reasons. Firstly, there are plenty of roofs in each city. Secondly, this is an industry that people like to pick up plenty of quotes for. So don’t be deterred by an amount if it is not what you had in your head. This is just to give you a good idea of the general amount of searches local people are putting in for your service.
Remember the last few times you Google’d something? Often you are going to take action. You want to know where the local bakery is. You want to know when the bank is open until, you want to call a locksmith to come and fix your front door. You often go straight to Google for answers and to take action. You aren’t suddenly going to start making Instagram searches for your local locksmith or type locksmith into Facebook. You will get a load of cat videos and other stuff that is totally irrelevant. Google is about relevancy, solving the problem of the person and providing quick solutions.
I’m telling you this because all of these searches going through for ‘roofers + [city]’ are likely actually looking for a quote. They are not looking for your website to browse through your services for fun. They do not care about your logo. They are not going on your contact form for a laugh.
They have a problem and they want it solving now. You see?
Let’s have a look at the other tool now. The whole point of this is that you should use these tools together.
The second tool is called Moz. Moz is a tool created to help companies like ours and you can use it too.
Create an account with Moz and find local keyword finder on one of their dropdown menus. Copy and paste the most lucrative search term you found through Google Keyword Planner into this search bar. For example, ‘roofers in [city]’.
The results will tell you something very important. That is: ‘difficulty’.
Difficulty will tell you, roughly, how hard it will be to get your website to the top of that search term. Although a lot of it will look like gibberish – the main thing you need to look at is the difficulty metric. Generally the scale looks like this:
Difficulty 0-15: pretty easy get to the front page. You can do this in a 3-4 months from a fresh domain. Or if the domain is relatively aged (6 months+) and not had much negative SEO done to it, perhaps a little shorter.
Difficulty 15-30: Getting harder now. These terms are going to be taking at least 4 months and could be as long as 6-8.
Difficulty 30-60: Harder still. You’re looking at 6 months minimum in this bracket
Difficulty 60-100: These terms are usually going to take 8-12 months minimum to crack the first page.
One thing worth noting is that difficulties this high might assume that a a lot of searches and competition are running through them. That means that even being on the second and third page rather than first wouldn’t be a disaster. Thus also decreasing the time of 8-12 months for results.
For each difficulty of search term, you can expect to pay that many month’s worth of work as outlined above. However, these are rough predictions. It’s probably likely some timeframes take a bit longer. Also, you will probably need to keep paying your company to maintain your position rather than it simply being a 3 month process. That is, if you want to hire a company to carry out this service for you if it seems like it will be profitable for you.
How profitable will getting your website to the first page be for your business?
This is going to depend on your business, how profitable your product/service offering is, how many leads you need to get before you make a sale, how profitable your SEO niche is and so on. Weigh up how many enquiries it takes to turn into a job. Look at how many searches there are. Let’s say for every enquiries you get, you usually get at least one project out of this.
Now let’s imagine there are 100 searches a month for a search term you want your website to top. Fast forward 5 months and you are number one for that. Let’s say you get 40 clicks from this search term to your website. Then 10% of these people call – 4. Now you have 4 more calls a month, of which 50% convert to a project. This makes for 2 extra customers a month, meaning 24 new customers a year. This is just for one search term…
These numbers are being conservative by the way. You could easily get more clicks and more calls from these clicks if you have the right team working for your company (hint). As you can see, it’s very easy for SEO to work for small businesses. We guarantee hundreds of millions of sales are coming each month or year as a result of people being at the top of Google on purpose.
Again, it’s pretty hard to quantify how it will all work without seeing your website, your rankings, your own service, how you answer the phone and more… But this is an example.
Again, what can I do with these tools then?
Well, the next time you get an email or a call offering you search engine optimisation, you can already know which search terms are the most valuable, how long each term should take and so on. You can protect yourself from making bad investments or ruining your domain by hiring a company that clearly does not know what they are doing. Most importantly, you can see for yourself, right now, today, if your website would benefit by being at the top of Google.
A good general rule is going to be: if there are 20+ searches per month with a relatively low difficulty, you should have started getting your website up the rankings last year. People want your service RIGHT NOW (remember, people use Google to solve problems right now, not get information about your company or search for a laugh). You are leaving money on the table by not having your website slap-bang in front of these people right now. They are looking for you, but they are finding your competition instead (and if the competition is low, they might be there through luck or a tiny investment, yet stealing loads of sales).
If you would like more information on how many people are looking for your product or service in your area, what the expected timeframe and outcome of our result would be then just get in touch. That might be easier than sifting through this, creating accounts and trying to figure it out for yourself.
Thank you for reading and enjoy your time off.
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