I’m going to go against all of the recent marketing trends with today’s post. If you are searching Google for things like:1. I need top search engine rankings.2. How can I get my website ranked at the top of Google?3. I want my website to get top ranking. How do I do that?AND you want to achieve that ranking in a “cheap” or “affordable” way…
AND by “cheap” or “affordable” you mean for a total investment of $300-$500…AND you don’t want to “do it yourself”…then you’re PROBABLY not going to like the rest of what you’re about to read.
IT ISN’T GOING TO HAPPEN.
Want to know the truth that most SEO scammers and spammers COUNT ON to be able to deceive you and take your money? At the same time, do you want to know the truth that most people with top ranked websites DON’T WANT YOU TO KNOW?
The ONLY way to gain a top ranked website these days is to:
1. Outspend your competition.2. Out work your competition.
Nothing else works and why should it?
Let’s Put Things in Proper Perspective
If you’re in business and have ever placed a newspaper or magazine ad, then you already know that if you purchase the back cover of any kind of printed publication that you’ll get more exposure and response than if you place a small, classified ad somewhere in the middle of the publication.
If you’ve ever placed a television ad spot, then you know that your 30 second spot on some local, cable channel at 2pm isn’t going to perform as well as running a 60 second commercial spot during prime time’s The Big Bang Theory on CBS.
So where in the world did you get the idea that things are all that different on the internet?
Okay, I’ll Tell You…
…and this next section could be subtitled…
WHO ARE YOU GOING TO BELIEVE? ME, OR YOUR LYING EYES?
WIX.com. WEEBLY.com. WEB.com. YOLA.com. MOONFRUIT.com
Do those dot coms mean anything to you? If you watch any amount of television and don’t fast-forward over the commercials you’ve probably seen the commercials that WIX runs a number of times every day offering FREE WEBSITES.
How about WORDPRESS, JOOMLA, DRUPAL, COFFEECUP? Have you heard of any of those? All of these tools are FREE as well and with a little time and some patience you can have a very nice looking website up and running.
If you’re a Realtor, according to household real estate names like Zillow, you can have a FREE website running in minutes AND you only pay $10 a month. If you have some products that you want to sale, according to Shopify and many like them, you can have a fully operational eCommerce website for FREE, without ANY setup costs and for only $29 a month (some are less).
By now you can tell that there’s a common thread with all of these offers. You CAN have a FREE website. You CAN. You’ll get no debate here.
AND NOW…THE REST OF THE STORY
Of course I’m stealing this lead in from that wonderful old, radio sage, Paul Harvey.
What ALL of these super-marketing-savvy conglomerates are not telling you is that they know something that YOU probably don’t know. They know that the website that they are giving you FREE – won’t work. Nobody will know that it exists. Nobody will ever see that wonderful, new website of yours without YOU telling them how to go to it.
It WILL show up on Google and Yahoo….around PAGE 103. By the way, FREE WEBSITES are not new. Back in the early 1990s Tripod, Angelfire, FreeServers, FortuneCity, Homestead and others offered free websites AND free hosting.
WHAT IS NEW is that these major players (at least major in that they are spending the most advertising dollars to entice you) are playing against your lack of understanding of WHAT makes for a successful website. One of our clients called me the other day complaining that they had put up an online store on one of these FREE website providers about six months ago. They shared that they had spent DAYS loading up more than 400 products and getting everything looking wonderful. After all those countless hours of getting everything looking great – not one visitor of value had seen the website. Oh they had spammers from the Russian Federation, Ukraine and India emailing them that THEY had found the website. But nobody looking to buy products.
When I explained what was missing, our client felt betrayed and lied to – but they couldn’t be angry when the website didn’t cost them anything. After we spoke a few more minutes she stated, “This is kind of like someone giving you a brand new Ferrari and then not telling you that the only place you can purchase the gas to make it go is from THEM.”
That’s not 100% accurate – but close enough that I’m not going to elaborate on her point.
Earlier this week I met with a potential client from Miami who is in the jewelry industry. Her brick and mortar store is located right next to a famous restaurant on 40th Street in Miami. Partly due to her great location; partly due to her unique product line and partly due to her family name – their jewelry can be seen adorned on such celebrities as Kim Kardashian, Jennifer Aniston, Alonzo Mourning, Dwyane Wade, Mickey Rourke, Beyonce, Billy Ray Cyrus and others.
Despite all of that notoriety and fame – she was frustrated because her website received MAYBE 100 visitors in the last year and a half! She commented about how often she BLOGGED and yet she was so consumed by the THOUGHT that her store website LOOKED great and that it shows all of these superstars wearing their jewelry – that she wasn’t seeing the forest for the trees.
She has had a website since 2009 and in ALL of that time MAYBE 800 people had visited her website. Instead of really addressing the issues as to WHY nobody was going to her website, she decided to build another new website in January of this year – this time using Shopify. She’s spent countless hours getting her product line in the online store. She’s written tons of BLOG articles since January – to the TWELVE people who have visited her website since January.
When I SHOWED her these revelations, her only response was to share the news that she had recently hired a PR firm in Miami (for three months) to help guide her.
Maybe they can help her find another gas pump for that Ferrari.
So let’s get back to the statement about the only two ways that you can gain top rankings on Google, Yahoo, Bing and the search engines.
1. Outspend your competition.2. Out work your competition.
“Outspending” affords you the option of contracting a SEO-savvy company to write and add in the content pages needed to beat your competition’s rankings. We can setup daily reporting that shows where your website needs help and what kind of content is needed to meet and beat your competition.
“Outworking” simply means that since you’re doing the content writing and work, you’re not having to pay for it.
If you want and need more customers, they are RIGHT THERE on the other end of your keyboard. They are LOOKING for you EVERY SINGLE DAY. If you don’t have a large budget and simply cannot afford the financial investment that it takes to compete with those at the top of all of the searches related to your business – then your only choice is to OUTWORK them.
AppNet and other companies that operate like we do make our living by building websites and by consulting and teaching many of our clients how to “outwork and/or outsmart their competition”.
It is like that old proverb – “Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day; show him how to catch fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.”
WEB DEVELOPMENT ARCHITECTURE LENDS ITSELF TO BETTER FISHING…
It used to be that web design companies HAD to do all of the design, handling of edits, etc. When SEO (search engine optimization) came along it further made it necessary for only a seasoned professional to handle most web page growth, etc.
Now, with CMS (content management systems) that allows most anyone to add, edit and delete any and every page of a website, it is EASIER to build the website that businesses can afford and then teach clients how to use those tools to grow their own websites to a point that it becomes more competitive with those websites ranked at the top.
Perhaps the most significant difference in marketing via the internet and other, more traditional marketing venues is that you CAN effect your own website’s success with a lot of your own sweat-equity. If you are short on budget, you CAN do a lot of the work to grow content yourself. Of course, then you have to ask yourself the following questions:
How much is YOUR time worth?How good are you going to be at it?…and most importantly, WILL YOU DO THE WORK? (Most business owners are too busy to put in the time that is necessary to win rankings.
Most high-quality web development companies will tell you that on an almost daily basis we are confronted with people who are wanting to start an online business, and in so many cases they’ve already heard the “They can get something for nothing” ads. There are so many people who are just getting by financially and they are falling prey to these promotions. Unfortunately, these kinds of things have always been around. However, like everything else these days…because of the internet there are just so many more ways to be scammed.
Once we perform our best “Dr. Phil” impression and bring these people back down to Earth, we are almost always asked a question related to…
HOW ARE THEY DOING THAT?
The “THEY” in that question are the people who ARE showing up at the top of Google searches and obviously doing well.
That is one of our most-often-asked queries – “How is this or that company always ranked in the top?” That question is usually followed up with, “How much will this cost?”
Once we share the “HOW” and “HOW MUCH” we usually hear some comments related to, “Well I definitely need to ‘get there’ but what can we do for about ‘half’ that budget?”
It should be simple LOGIC that we can do about one-half of what is needed.
Another response we get is, “Well I had a call from ‘XYZ web design’ where they said that could get me a website for $500.”
Ask yourself this question – “Does it make any sense whatsoever that you should be able to put up a website that is anywhere from FREE to $500 that will perform as well on Google as a company who spent $10,000 on their website?”
Does it make sense that you should be able to advertise on television and be seen as often as “He went to Jared’s” for $1000 when Jared’s spends MILLIONS?
Of course not.
There are tons of scammers and spammers out there – and a lot of otherwise legitimate companies – who seem to want you to believe that the internet is different. That probably stems from the early days when we all heard the stories of how someone put up a one page website and got rich.
Those days are long gone. You can still “get rich” but not without an investment of time, money or both.
So let’s get BACK to the initial question of,”How Can I Get My Website Ranking on Top of Google?”
The great thing about the internet is that we now have so many tools that we can plug most any website into and give you a pretty decent idea of the worth or value of any website. We can tell you definitively about how much of an investment (time or money) that your competition has in their website.
That IS the secret that the website owners who rank up top DON’T WANT YOU TO LEARN. By measuring your competition, you then can know what to do that is required to meet or beat them.
Then it’s a fairly simple process to compare your website with theirs and then you’ll know how much time and/or money that you have to put in to get yourself on their level.
While there is SOME science to it – it isn’t rocket science.
We were meeting with a group of realtors this past week who made our job rather easy when they first challenged us by stating, “We want to be THE TOP real estate company online for “X”, “Y” and “Z” communities on Google. What is that going to cost?”
All we had to do was SHOW them the following:
“ABC Realty’s” website is a $30,000 website.”DEF Realty’s” website is a $15,000 website.”GHI Realty’s” website is a $12,000 website.”JKL Realty’s” website is a $10,000 website.
We then asked them, “If you’re okay with NOT being in the top four or five, we can strategize less – but if you’re wanting to be in the top four, tell US where you are budget-wise.” In some cities it may only take a $500 website to rank at the top. In competitive areas it can take more.
For example, if you’re a realtor located in Alma, Kansas which has a population of 745 people, you could probably rank NUMBER ONE on Google with a budget of $200-$300 or an investment of about a half days worth of work. However, if you’re a realtor in Miami, Florida where (according to Realtor.com) there are 24,171 real estate agents, you’ll need to be prepared to invest your time and/or money to create a website that will cost you in the ball park of $40K-$50K ANNUALLY to rank up top and get the leads necessary to be a top agent or firm.
THE BEST STRATEGIES are now those that enable you to pay for the website that you NEED TODAY and allot some level of spending (whether monthly or quarterly, etc) that would allow for frequent GROWTH.
GONE ARE THE DAYS where you can put up a website and sit on it for ANY length of time. You’re better off to spend your budget over a period of a YEAR (instead of all at once) because then your results will be more consistent over time.
Any approach that is outside of the realm of outspending or outworking your competition is like chasing after the wind.
YOUR MOM AND DAD WERE CORRECT. NULL. NADA. CERO. NIETS. CIPHER. NAUGHT. ZILCH. ZIP. GOOSE EGG…NOTHING – IN LIFE IS FREE.
No matter how small your marketing budget might be – good design and SEO firms can work with you in a fashion that WILL make a difference in increasing your business. Ignoring that your website isn’t generating business for you or putting off doing something about it while others are getting YOUR customers – doesn’t make sense in this competitive marketplace. There are always options and the best time to get started in making a difference is today.