A quick search on Google for the term "brochure design" results in over 25 million matches. If your prospective customer spent just 5 seconds looking at each match, it'd take around 4 years to view them all
And you want to be #1?
The great thing about the internet is that it is so large. There's so much information available, there's so many web sites and there's so many people hunting for information.
The problem is matching the information to the people who are searching for it. Putting this more specifically, the problem is ensuring that when someone searches for business card design, you are on of the first matches to appear in the search engine.
That means being on the first or second page of the Google matches. For the example of brochure design it means being in the top 20 out of 25 million.
Those are tough odds because you can lay bets that there's a lot of other brochure designers, business card printers, jewelry stores, etc also trying to be in that top 20.
There's also a lot of companies telling you they will put you in the top 20. Over 29 million based upon a Google search for Search Engine Optimization plus a bunch spelt optimisation. This is a whole industry known as SEO for short, dedicated to the science or art of trying to their clients pages into that magic top 20 or, the holy grail, #1.
If there was a magic formula or software out there that could get you in the top 20, everyone would be in the top 20. Obviously there isn't because they aren't.
There are some pretty basic business guidelines to consider if you are considering making use of another company to improve to Web sales:
Your web site should adhere to some basic rules. Any good web developer can help you with these and I will cover these in a future article. They relate to relevant content, good titles and descriptions, good navigation and other techniques designed to ensure that when Google finds your site it knows what it has found and is able to correctly interpret it.
There are two key techniques that will definitely help.
The first is good content. This means that if you are selling a particular product, have lots of pages relevant to that product. Provide background information, how-to's, white papers, frequently asked questions. If this is done well, the search engines will start to think that your site is the site that has the best information about the products you are selling. This is what you want. If Google thinks you are the best then you are #1.
For example, if you design business cards provide articles on printing, inks, colors, business cards from around the world, humorous business cards, famous names, etc.
The second are links from other sites. If lots of other sites that print business cards link to your business card design site then Google will assume your site is important. These are known as backlinks. These and ensuring you are in the directories on the web (such as Yahoo, dmoz, and many more) will ensure that Google gets reminded you exist whenever it goes searching those sites. These backlinks are a major part of how Google determines which sites are most important.
The reality of all this is that the effort involved in doing this is non-trivial. And it is not one-off, it continues for as long as you want your web site to be #1. Finding a good SEO company is very difficult. They will sell themselves based upon your "ranking". They will say "we can make you a top 20 site". The hard part for you is that you want to be top 20 for searches that will lead to a sale of your products. Being top 20 for postcards if they are seaside souvenirs is not much use to the bottom line of a company designing marketing postcards.
Good SEO companies will cost 1,000's of dollars per month. Quite simply it's an advertising expense and that money is what it costs in effort to do the job. Remember that you get what you pay for.
There's 29 million SEO hits on Google waiting for you to click on them!
To leave you with a tip, the first SEO companies to look at are the first 20 of those 29 million.