Search engines can be a great way to get people to your site, but it can be really difficult to make sure that your company is projecting the right image to your potential clients. When someone searches for your company, they might see your site as the first result, but they also see nine other sites after it on the same page. These sites could potentially distract, or even turn away your potential customers.
There's a simple way to combat this problem: Make sure that you control as many of the other nine results as possible. While the website you own will only be one result, there's nothing stopping you from creating pages about your company on a bunch of different websites. Then when someone searches for your company, they'll see your real website followed by your company's profile on several other sites, all of which you have control over.
You can see this in action by doing a Google search for "Less Annoying Software" (our company name). Sure, this website is the #1 result, but that wasn't too difficult given how unique our name is. What's even more important is that the next seven results are all pages that I set up for our company on different websites. By doing this, we make sure that we own almost all of the results on the first page of Google so that we have complete control over what potential customers see when they search for our company.
You can do this too. Just set up a profile for your company on as many different sites as you can. Make sure they all link back to your real site, and that they have your company name in the title. Here's a very brief list of free services that will let you set up profiles for your company that will show up in Google:
- Facebook Pages - In case you haven't noticed, "groups" are no longer the correct way to promote yourself on Facebook. You can create a "page" for your company, and search engines will include it in their results.
- LinkedIn - Like Facebook, you can make a page for your company.
- Twitter - Twitter isn't as good as Facebook for SEO, but you should probably have a Twitter account for other reasons anyway.
- Hubpages - This is a site that lets you create web pages about just about whatever you want. They don't allow you to blatantly advertise your company, but you can mention your company in a page that you create as long as you're not overly promotional and you add value to the community. However, you should make sure your company name shows up in the title of the page, or else it probably won't show up in search results.
- Squidoo - I haven't actually set up a page on Squidoo yet (it's on the list) but it has a reputation for being similar to Hubpages.
These sites will only be useful if your company sells software, but you can look for similar sites in whatever your industry happens to be.
- AlternativeTo.net - I already wrote about how you can use this site to find software, but you can also use it to promote your product. This site is a great source of leads for Less Annoying Software.
- GetApp.com - This is a pretty straightforward software directory. They have paid options which I'm testing out now, but you should at least set up a free listing for your company.
There are literally hundreds of sites just like these, so don't stop there. Go out and set up profiles on as many different sites as possible. If you know of another good service that our other readers should try, email us!