Concepts for success: December 2012

Diane Chiasson
November 15, 2012
Written by Diane Chiasson
Seven ways to move your bakery up and be recognized by search engines

SEO  
Simple SEO strategies such as adding keywords and updating your website frequently will move your bakery up in search rankings.

 
With more than one billion people using smartphones and countless others searching for information on their computers, your ranking on a search engine is now one of the most powerful ways to gain business. If you type “bakery” into your Google search bar, you will probably yield hundreds of millions of results. So how can you make your bakery appear at the top of the page of a search engine?

Today, your website needs to offer much more than just an address, phone number and menu. It needs to engage your visitors and get them to visit your website over and over again. Proper SEO (search engine optimization) techniques will improve in search engine rankings.
Here are seven simple tips to help move your bakery up in search rankings:

1. Research proper keywords
Good SEO starts with your keywords. Research the most important keywords and phrases that relate to your bakery operation by asking your customers what keywords they would use to search, studying your competitors’ websites, or using a keyword research tool. Include these relevant keywords in your homepage, title tag and the rest of your content. Make sure you mention your location (city, town, province) repeatedly.

2. Update your website frequently
One of the key things that search engines look for is whether or not a website is constantly changing. Make sure you update your website on a regular basis (once a week at a minimum). Update new photos of your pastries, cakes, pies, breads or other products, promote your specials, upload videos, or start a blog. All the movement on your website will help you move up in the search rankings.

3. Have lots of reciprocal links
Another way to increase your SEO is by building more reciprocal links to and from your website. Work with all the local non-competitive businesses in your area to help increase the number of links leading to and from your website. You can also get your suppliers to do reciprocal links.

4. Add value to your content
Your website should provide important information like location, operating hours, your menu and a map. But you should also provide value-added content like recipes, how-to videos, or even party planning advice. Develop a series to entice your customers to visit your website on a weekly basis.

5. Use Facebook, Twitter and other social media tools
Social media will help you increase your search rankings significantly, but like your website, you must make the time to update regularly. Bakeries have the advantage of selling products that attract with pictures, so take and post lots of photos.

6. Treat your website as a window to your store
Convey the personality of your bakery operation through your website using colour, text, graphics, videos, games, design and content. Your website should be like your storefront, drawing potential customers to come inside and try your products.

7. Interact with customers online
Make your website a place where you can interact with your customers. Allow customers to custom order cakes or other desserts or order sandwiches. Have them sign up for a newsletter. Allow them to post their comments on a comment board. The possibilities are endless. Whatever options you choose, make your website interactive.


Diane Chiasson, FCSI, president of Chiasson Consultants Inc., has been helping restaurant, foodservice, hospitality and retail operators increase sales for more than 30 years. Her company provides innovative and revenue-increasing foodservice and retail merchandising programs, interior design, branding, menu engineering, marketing and promotional campaigns, and much more. Contact her at 416-926-1338, toll-free at 1-888-926-6655 or by e-mail at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or visit www.chiassonconsultants.com.

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