You've invested time and funding in developing your website, and now you're looking to get it out there for all to see. There's just one little problem - it isn't showing up on a Google search.
It can be incredibly frustrating to pull up a blank Google result when searching for your business. If you yourself can't find your own website, then how will prospective clients?
Thankfully, there are a few good reasons you're experiencing trouble with Google searches, and some good ways to remedy these problems. Here's how to troubleshoot this problem.
Your website hasn't been indexed by search engines yet.
If your website is brand new, there could be a very simple reason your website isn't showing up on search engines: they have't indexed it yet. It can take a week or more for a search engine to find your website for the first time, especially if your website is new and doesn't have any inbound links.
Once your website is "crawled" (aka uncovered by a search engine) it usually takes a week or two for it to actually get pushed out into the index. In order to optimize this stage, proceed to the next tip.
Your website isn't well organized or optimized for search engine crawling.
When a search engine begins to scan through your website, it is looking for a some specific items - relevant content, general topics, headers, and some other similar factors. In other words, they aren't looking at the beautiful graphic design of your website, but at the actual textural and link buildup.
Search Engine Optimization is an extensive topic which you can read about here, but here are a few basic rules of thumb:
- Consistently write quality content
- Write thematically, focusing on key topics pertaining to your business rather than keywords (let your keywords develop as a natural by-product of writing about your key topics)
- Use header tags (H1, H2, H3 etc.)
- Utilize a sitemap
- Do not use the Meta Keywords, as we recently discussed
To learn about these items in more detail, be sure and check out these recent articles.
Your website doesn't have enough quality content.
What exactly is quality content, you ask? Well, content is the substance of your website - text, links, image, videos, etc. This "copy" should be substantial and rich. Every single item on your website should be written with thought, and designed to provide value to your prospective readers.
Keyword stuffing and other "shortcut" methods inhibit the quality of this content. Search engines have gotten a lot smarter about these maneuvers, and if they notice some of these items, your website SEO could get heartily penalized.
It is also important to break up large chunks of text with visual guides. While this does apply to images and videos, ideally, it can also pertain to visual layout, displacing text with H1 header tags, bulleted lists, or otherwise offset text.
Your website uses too much Flash.
Flash animation certainly can bring some great visual appeal to your website. Unfortunately, search engines aren't able to process these animations as well as you may like.
If your website is entirely built with Flash-embedded page elements, including links and text, it renders this copy invisible to search engines.
However, good success can be achieved with partially animated, provided you make good use of site content and meta tags (unconnected to flash animations, of course.)
Questions? Unsure where to go from here? Need some help? Don't hesitate to reach out to us! We'd love to answer your questions, or provide you specific assistance with your situation.