A staggering number of people now rely on Google to find what they’re looking for on the Internet.   Would you believe that Google now processes over 40,000 search queries every second!

Be it searching for recipes, news, research, or whatever, if you search for something on Google, you’re only 1 of 3.5 billion searches they perform daily.

Just think about the scale of it.   In 2012, Amit Singhal, Senior Vice President at Google disclosed that they’d indexed more than 30 trillion web addresses.   Every day they “crawl” 20 billion sites looking for new and updated content.  Yet whenever you search for something, you expect the top results are returned in milliseconds.   A single query uses over 1000 computers throughout Google’s distributed datacenters!

Google Datacenter

Everyone wants to be at the top of Google search results, so how do you accomplish this?    Well, it’s not easy!  Take for example, someone searching for my business on Google, if they search for the phrase “web designer”, Google returns over 822,000,000 related pages!

Here are a few tips to help you reach the top pages on Google for your website.    The process is known as Search Engine Optimisation (or SEO for short).   SEO is a strategy for developing the content on your site in such a way that it improves your chance of “ranking” highly for searches.

However, it’s not just related to what’s on your site, as one of the biggest SEO factors is how other sites link to you.   Let’s take a step back and see how Google crawls the web looking for content.

One of the first steps when launching a website is to register it with the Search Engines (Google, Bing, etc).   By registering your website, you’re announcing that you’re there and asking them to take a look.   The search engine robots (or bots) will start with your home page.   They’ll read the text, look at the images and generally build up an idea of what the page is about.   This is why textual content is very important – in fact crucial to SEO – as it gives the search engines background to your site.   For example, if my site had no mention of web design, why would it ever appear in a search for the term?

It’s worth taking a moment to discuss content in greater detail as this is really important.  The content needs to mention keywords that your users are going to be searching for (e.g. Web Design).   However, if you mention these keywords in every sentence (known as spamming), Google will quickly pick up on this and penalise you.   My best advice is to write content about your business that would make sense and be appealing to your end customer.    Google will pick up on this and their algorithms will get a good “feel” for who you are and what you offer.   These kinds of pages have much higher value to the end user, so Google ranks them accordingly.

Unfortunately, the best content in the world isn’t going to rank #1 on Google instantly.   You also have to build a reputation for your site, and the best way to do this is through “backlinks”.   The web is based around linking.   Links from buttons, words, images etc form the way you navigate around the web.  And the more links you have to your site, the more important it is in the eyes of Google.    Back links are difficult to get though, as nobody wants to link to something that’s no use!   So, a combination of pages filled with valuable content, along with links from other sites to these pages, is what you’re ideally looking for.

A blog is a good way to keep adding new and relevant content to your site.   Interesting and helpful articles will often generate links and traffic to your site.  This gradual building of content and back linking is called “organic” as it grows like roots of a tree.   The only drawback is it takes a lot of time and effort, but it’s worth it!

Now you can cheat and jump to the top of Google instantly, but you’ll have to pay for it!   Google sells the top spots on its search pages to advertisers.   Their scheme called Google AdWords, lets you bid against your competition to be top of the search results for specific queries.    Here it pays to be specific about the search queries – as for example, it’s a lot more expensive to be top of the results for “Web Designers London” than it is for “Web Designers Tatamagouche”.   If your business is fairly location specific and there isn’t much in the way of competition, then Google AdWords might be something worth looking into for fast results.    However, I’d still recommend the traditional route of content and linking in parallel.  After all, you don’t want to keep paying to be at the top if you can eventually get there for free.

Another approach is to register your business with Google, as these results will automatically appear at the top for users in your area.   This is free, so if you have a business, go register it now at:


When you register, they will validate your address by sending a post card with a code on it in the mail.   Once validated, you’ll be classed as the business owner and will be able to edit and update the business pages.

Two final tips that can help improve your ranking – site speed and responsive design.   These are two factors that Google have focussed on recently to provide search results with sites that “work well”.    Site speed is how quickly your website loads.   If you rank the same as another business, the fastest of the two will be the highest.   Similarly, if you site works well on a variety of devices, desktops, tablets, cell phones etc, Google will rank you higher.

If you have a website already and would like a hand with the SEO, please get in touch.   Until next time, keep searching!