While working with a lot of Israeli and other international startups, I see the scenario time and time again; Talented groups of people, great product and 0 understanding in marketing!
“How will you get your first 1,000,000 users?” I usually ask.
“We’ll go viral! Our traction is amazing. We’ve doubled our numbers the past few weeks and we already have over 200 beta testers on our platform/app”
That’s about the time I start scratching my head and saying to myself “Oh boy…”.
Now don’t get me wrong. You don’t need to be a marketing wizard or a social media guru to step up your online marketing game. If you only follow these 5 simple steps, you will see hundreds if not thousands percentage growth in your organic traffic.
1. Title and Description
Google’ search engine (and other search engines as well) rank its results based on different elements, and these help the company determine the ranking of a website for different search terms.
Two of these elements are Title & Description.
Title and Description are html meta tags, located in the header section of a web page. Its job is to tell the search engine what the page is all about:
Title – What is the name of the page (briefly).
Description – Longer explanation of what the page is talking about.
Couple of tips on building a perfect Title and Description for your website:
- Check your competitors – Watch the search terms they are using and see if it’s relevant to your web page as well.
- Use search tools to see how much traffic you can get from a specific term and what other terms you should explore. A great tool to use is the Google Keyword Planner
- Keep your Title under 60 characters and Description under 156 characters. That’s Google rules not mine!
- Structure your Title and Description so you’ll have your brand name in one part, and the phrase you want on the other.
- Use different Title & Description for every single page on your website. This will help you get more search results ranking and keep you out of trouble with Google (they like to see unique Titles and Descriptions in every page). You can later check it on Webmasters Tools under HTML Suggestions
*Here is an example of Title and Description on Google for the term Israeli Startups NYC
2. Subtitles and Short Paragraphs
Second thing you need to pay attention to is your content. The content on your website is not a legal document, people need to read and understand it!
That’s why you should write your posts in short paragraphs, and use subtitles so that people can scroll down your content and quickly understand what you’re talking about, without getting a headache… And besides, Google loves it!
For subtitles you can use simple html tags to clarify the importance of the paragraph
3. Rich Media
“A picture is worth a thousand words” as we all know, well the same principle works in the SEO word.
Rich Media; Images, Videos, GIFs, Infographics etc, help visitors of your site get a better user experience, feel more connected to the content and stay longer in the page. And as we know, what’s good for the user is good for Google.
Add some flavor and color to your content, it will improve your search results dramatically!
Experts Tip – In the HTML section, add “Title” to the image. This will boost your Organic Results AND Image Results!
4. Social Sharing
Even though by now most of our Facebook feed looks like a social newspaper; when seeing an article on Techcrunch our friend just left a comment, or a TMZ story our brother just liked, a lot of startups seem to forget this factor when it comes to their own content.
In recent updates, Google’s ranking algorithm seems to put more weight on the importance of virality and engagement with the content.
Adding Social Sharing buttons to your website will not only better your ranking, but also help other potential readers find out about your startup and increasing your website traffic from the social platforms themselves.
Here are 2 tips for adding a Social Sharing button:
- If you’re using WordPress for your blog, this social sharing plugin is the best one out there and that’s the one I’m personally using for my site – Link
- If you’re using a different CMS or a simple HTML website, you can add a code snippet from Share This that is very easy to create and implement.
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5. Index Your Website
Now I know that for some of you this may seem like the most obvious thing of all, but A LOT of startups don’t realize their website is not indexed on Google.
The reason (for those of you who don’t know how Google works) is that Google works in a pretty simple way. It discovers new pages and websites by sending spiders (not real ones, dah) to websites he knows and see where they link to; this website links to this page, this page links to that website, etc… and since your startup is fresh of the box, and you have no websites linking to you just yet, Google has no way of knowing about you without you telling him.
“So all I have to do is make sure Google visits my website once and I’m good?”
You need to make sure Google is aware of EVERY PAGE ON YOUR WEBSITE! And to do so you need to add something called Sitemap. Exactly like it sounds, sitemap is a map of your site (amazing right?!)
Few tips for indexing content on your website:
1. Add your website/startup to public directories – Crunchbase, Angellist, LinkedIn. Add your website wherever you can (backlinks are also very important to Google search)
3. Adding individual pages to Google directly – You can do it by simply going to your Webmasters Tools – Crawl – Fetch As Google.
This will allow you to add URLs that you think Google can’t find otherwise or it’s something you wish to index really fast.
What do you think about SEO for Startup? Do you think it is worth the time and effort or a good product is enough?
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