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Consumers search for your services online every single day. Search engines such as Google want to give them the right results. Here are a few simple tips you can do yourself to make it easier for the search engines to promote your business.

Your business has many online profiles, some of which you are not aware of. The information on each of these profiles needs to be accurate. It is especially important that your name, address and contact information are correct. If the search engines detect conflicting data about your company, what are they supposed to do? How do they know which reference is correct? If your competitor has consistent data and yours is not, which profile do you think Google will display to the consumer?

Start by entering your business name into Google. Scroll down and open each reference to verify the information on that site is correct. Pay special attention to sites with “star” review ratings, since consumers tend to visit these sites regularly.

There are free automated tools from Google that test your website for search engine optimization performance. Simply enter your website address, hit enter and look at the results. A good place to start is “Google’s PageSpeed Insights.” The most powerful one of all is “Google Search Console.” Your website’s performance as outlined in these analytical tools is extremely important.

Any online reference containing information about your business is a potential asset. These include your website, Facebook, LinkedIn, Yelp, BBB profile and more.

Most businesses should have these basic online assets: a website, a Google company page, LinkedIn and Facebook pages, a Yelp profile and a YouTube company channel. They should all have the same data and should all point back to your website.

Complete the steps outlined in this article. It will position you for a more profitable 2018! Stay tuned for a future BizTips article on intermediate online marketing tips.

Bill Nordbrock is vice president of community relations for SCORE Southern Arizona, a nonprofit group that offers free small-business counseling and mentoring by appointment at several locations. For information, go to southernarizona.score.org, send an email to mentoring@scoresouthernaz.org or call 505-3636.

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