Now that your Business is Searchable…Are you ‘Researchable’?

The term “Researchable” is not used often, although it is in the dictionary, you won’t find this word used anywhere, but the meaning is clear: Researchable means that you have done the background work so that your potential clients can get to know everything they need to before they might convert to buyers. It means that your business has created an online presence that answers their questions and creates the possibility that you can be trusted. How do you know if your business is researchable?

It may seem that your website has all the right information, yet the phone is still not ringing. You have your social media platforms set up, you are advertising online, so things should be picking up now, right? Not necessarily.

You might have heard that Google recently changed it’s search criteria, and may discard you in a ¬†Google search if your website is not responsive. With the majority of shoppers searching for products and services using MOBILE devices, and less so traditional computer screens, a website that is not responsive will only show up as a quarter of your home page, if at all, and as we are a tempermental pool of shoppers not wanting to scroll all over the place to get information, your site will be abandoned in seconds and they will be onto a new result. Shame, you have done all that work on your website and achieved a decent Google ranking, but people are walking away before they get to know you. The answer to this researchable question is, is your website RESPONSIVE? If it’s not Responsive, you may not be Researchable.

So, you may have all of your social media platforms set up, and every once in a while you dust them off and put up a post, but mostly they sit there gathering cobwebs. Many small businesses believe that simply HAVING a platform such as facebook is good enough. Sure, having a Facebook Business Page helps with search results, but a shift is happening out there that you need to get your head around. The action is happening now on TWITTER, so if you’re not on Twitter, you have lost an entire massive audience of potential buyers. If you don’t know anything about Twitter, buckle down and learn how to use it, and use it well. If you need training, well, call me of course! If you have Facebook and Twitter, learn to use them to CONNECT with your audience. You never know where the next referral will come from, so stay in people’s minds and put out content with the proper ratio of education, humour, engagement, and interesting articles. What’s the point you ask? The point is to get them to come to your website and REALLY get to know you, and be able to Research You. Now, let’s look at your website…

People are finding you online and have landed on your website, excellent! When they get there, they want two things:

1. How do I contact this business?

2. Exactly what does this business have to offer, is it what I need?

I see so many sites that bury their contact information deep on tab 9 and when you get there you are faced with a contact form, no direct access except a toll free number and no idea who might answer it. Solution? On your home page, in the header and footer, put your actual contact information front and center. On the Contact us tab, give people an option to call whichever division they might be looking for. For example; Contact James Adams, Sales Department, have James’ email and direct line. Beside that, have Krista’s the Administrative Assistant’s email, and general information line. Have the most frequently contacted members of your organization who are responsible for your initial client communications right there where people can see them. Put up a picture of James and Krista so clients will know that a real human will call them. It’s a small thing, but a neccessary thing, for small business to be accessible.

They might want to see if you have anything interesting to say, so have at least two different options for them to connect with you on Social Media. Have all your business social media platforms displayed on every page and ASK THEM to connect with you. On every blog post, article and press release, have a SHARE button within the article. Are you doing this yet, if not, why not? Don’t you want your small business to be SOCIAL?

Content is KING. Good content, education, offerings, and options. Simple, clean, easy to read, not volumes of blah blah. If you’re not sure that your content is KING, have an outside impartial human look at it for you, and don’t be insulted if they tell you it’s not exactly wonderful. Use that information to do a clean up, simplify your content, get rid of posts that are no longer relevant, and start thinking about what you should be telling your prospects. What do they most often ask you? There’s your content. Write it down, blog it out, post it on every platform, email it to your customers, and remind them you are the best one for the job. You are the best, yes?

So, you have cleaned up your SOCIAL side, updated your CONTENT, made your small business CONTACTABLE, re-done your website to make it RESPONSIVE, now have that impartial human, the one who told you your presence wasn’t exactly wonderful, come back and take another look when everything is looking great. Above all, you have conquered the one thing that most small businesses haven’t done, you have made yourself RESEARCHABLE.

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