These days, having a website isn’t enough. If you want customers to find you (and stay), you need to keep making your website better, improving your content, and ensuring that your site gives your customers everything they came for.
If you’re looking to improve your business website and get more customers, here are some handy (free) tools offered by Google to help you do just that.
Anybody who has a website should be regularly assessing it using Google Analytics. Google’s flagship web analytics service is easy to use, and gives you the tools you need to better understand your customers and improve your Google page ranking. It may seem daunting if you don’t consider yourself a techy person, but it’s really the only way to find out more about the people you’re reaching, and check how well your website is serving them.
You can go as light or deep as you want to with Google Analytics. Stick to the basics, like how many people are visiting your site, how long they stayed and which pages they visited most, or delve into demographics, campaign tracking and conversion, and in-site searches. It’s as close as you’ll get to reading your customers’ minds, and should always be top of your own mind when considering your online activities.
How to set up Google Analytics:
Google My Business
This is something that many businesses overlook, but thanks to Google promoting non-organic results in SERP features, keeping your business data (such as opening hours, location and contact details) up to date is vitally important in getting your website found on Google. This free and easy-to-use tool will help you manage your online presence across Google, including Search and Maps, giving a good first impression and ensuring that your customers can easily find you. Without it, they may end up somewhere else.
How to use Google My Business:
Consider Google Trends your ear to the ground. This clever feature tells you what people are looking for right now in any given geographical region, and can really help you when planning content for your website. You can enter your own search term to see how popular your topic may be, or just follow Google’s lead to get some great insights on the things people are talking about right now, and use them to guide your content strategy.
How to use Google Trends:
With Google rolling out updates on a regular basis, it’s always a good idea to run a health check and see how well your website is still performing. One of the most important factors in whether somebody stays on your site is page load time - especially important when Google will move to full mobile indexing next year. Luckily, the tool you need to check this factor is right there on the web, for free. Google will look over the mobile and desktop versions of your site and tell you which factors are causing slower loading times, and more importantly, how to fix them. Some fixes will be simple, and some may require some more technical know-how.
How to use Google PageSpeed:
Who is talking about you? Google Alerts will let you know. This handy tool will keep track of how often your brand is mentioned, and where. Or you can set up alerts for interesting new content, and be notified as soon as something comes up. Get automatic alerts by source, region and language, and have them delivered straight to your inbox. It’s handy not only for monitoring your brand’s reputation, but also for researching the topics you want to engage with (and, if you want to be really sleuth about it, your competitors too).
How to set up Google Alerts: