Small Business SEO Experiment – Google Webmaster Tools

Week #4 of my Small Business SEO Experiment is all about doing the things you need to do that you don’t do that know you should do but procrastinate and don’t do.

If this is the first time you’ve heard about my SEO experiment, below is the kickoff post and the first three weekly wrap-ups:

But then I did it.

This week I created a Sitemap for The Murray Group and submitted it to Google Webmaster Tools.  Your Blog’s sitemap is the Index for Google Search.  This file gives Google a path to follow when the little Google Robots are searching your site and adding your content to Google’s directory.  You’re giving Google the Road Map to your website.

I know that’s not the most technical (Techies please elaborate below in the comments) description of the process… But even if you don’t completely understand… Sounds important right?

I mean it kinda sounds super important?  Well it is!

I did this with a WordPress plugin called: Google XML Sitemap

But let’s Emirel Lagesse this thing and kick it up a notch…

This week I didn’t just submit my blog Sitemap, I also submitted my Video Sitemap.  So much of the 100 Insurance Questions Answered in 100 Days video series is about video… obviously.  So it only makes sense that you would give Google the Road Map to the videos on your website as well.

Because this is not an original thought of mine, I must give props to the peeps I learned this trick from… SEOMoz.

I did this with a WordPress plugin called: Google XML Sitemap for Videos (duh)

So now that you have these sitemaps where the heck do you put them?  Google Webmaster Tools.

Here is a quick snapshot of Google Webmaster Tools:

The screenshot above shows my Google Webmaster Tools dashboard.  This is the Google Tool that you will use to submit your blog and video sitemap.

Once Google has indexed your site you will begin to see the stats above.  This screen lists the search queries and keyword relevance for which your site is coming up in Google Search.  This is only after a couple days of having The Murray Group site indexed so I’m not going to get worried about having keyword relevance for the word “iframes” just yet.

The Google Webmaster Tools dashboard is important because it gives you a look into how Google sees your website.  You might think that you have all the keywords relevant to your business covered.  But as you can see, Google might not share that opinion (we’re going to get into this more in future articles).

From what I know about search and SEO I’m feeling pretty good about the improvements I’ve made to the campaign this week.

Week 4 Traffic Stats

Keeping with the Consistency and Patience theme of last week, let’s take a look at Week #4’s numbers:

seo experiment traffic week 4

Look at that… More traffic than last week.  Growth is good.

I mean look in that red box and tell me content doesn’t drive traffic to your website.  I know the numbers are still small now but it’s only been a month and we’re writing about Insurance.  This isn’t sexy stuff.

Basically what I’m getting at is though I’m not content, I am pleased with the progress thus far.

Here’s the CREAM though:

seo search traffic week 4

This is the CREAM (Or the cool part for you non-Wu-Tang fans)!

What have I said since the very beginning?

This SEO experiment is all about search traffic and don’t worry about Google over optimization penalty.

Leveraging content and time to make dollars…

I want people to find my insurance agency’s website while I’m sleeping, build a relationship with me through my videos and then call me in the morning dying to do business with me and all I did was finish my first cup of coffee…  That is CREAM.

Last week I was a little bummed when I wrote this wrap-up post.  Today I feel like a Stone-Cold-SEO-Gangster just growing search traffic and livin’ large.  Hahaha… I can’t type that with a straight face.  Let’ s just say it’s nice to see positive results.

Other counting stats:

Facebook Likes

No new reviews… I need to focus on this more.

The Stats That Actually Matter

We received two new leads this week from our website.  One was a Home and Auto and the other a Life Insurance.

The Home and Auto will close next week (We’ll count the revenue once the ink dries) and we’re still efforting on the Life account.

So that’s pretty cool.  For the SEO Experiment we’ve received 4 personal lines, 1 commercial and 1 life insurance lead into our agency directly from our website.

Not setting the world on fire but still not bad for 4 weeks of work.

Thank you.

(update… Now See Completed Results!)