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2023 Edition

Cabinet Store
Search Engine Optimization

Wordpress and SquareSpace tutorials
Cabinet Store related image
The Ultimate SEO Guide for
Cabinet Store Owners

Do it yourself SEO for Cabinet Store Owners in 4 steps ... plus 6 steps to avoid. Learn how successful Cabinet Store Owners use SEO to get more Customers!

At the end I'll be busting a few myths about blogging, link building and content marketing that are often recommended by inexperienced search engine optimization agencies and contractors. Spoiler ... you don't need any of them.

Tim Hill SEO
If you would prefer us to just get on and do all this for you then....
Click here to see our SEO Services for Cabinet Store Owners

Otherwise sit back, buckle up and here goes.

Table of Contents
STEP ONE: Setting up a Search Engine Optimizable Cabinet Store website
STEP TWO: Search Engine Optimizing a Cabinet Store website
STEP THREE: Registering and Monitoring your Cabinet Store website
STEP FOUR: The wider web for Cabinet Stores
What not do do with your Cabinet Store website
Introduction

Search Engine Optimization is both an art and a science. We are dealing with search engines like Google and Bing who refuse to reveal exactly what it takes to rank in their top positions except for some vague advice.

Such murky indicators are then left wide open for interpretation and here you see claims like "you have to blog" or "you need to reach out to similar websites and get them to link to you".

I've been in the SEO business for nearly two decades and seen plenty of fads come and go. Much has changed because search engines have evolved so what you read on the internet can easily be out of date. There is also a whole lot of 'noise' out there from self proclaimed 'SEO experts' who often contradict each other.

Many of these 'experts', when you look a little closer, rely heavily on paid advertising for their businesses to work while claiming to their audience that their SEO is effective. If it was, why do they pay for clicks?

In Search Engine Optimization for Cabinet Stores I'll share with you what actually works and how you can put it into action without needing any technical skills, without needing to blog and without needing to beg others for links to your website.

There are no "industry secrets" here because none actually exist, just a common sense approach to helping search engines list your business where it should be so potential Customers can find you. That means you help search engines provide a better user experience on their platform. A win-win.

I'll start from square one and I strongly recommend you begin there as well even if you have a website at the moment. It may mean you need to make some fundamental changes but don't be tempted to skip these or they will undermine all your future efforts.

Above all, enjoy SEO. With each task you complete you'll pass ever more clarity to the likes of Google and Bing and by the end you will have a robust web presence that will help your business grow.

The End Result

Before we dive into the detail it's worth taking a step back to see the big picture. We have two key aims here:

  1. Appearing high up in the search results of Google and Bing for relevant searches
  2. Keeping those rankings long term

You may well have read that shadey SEO companies can help you achieve Aim 1 fairly quickly but when the search engines spot their dodgy practices its 'poof' and you are gone but there are plenty of ways you can shoot yourself in the foot as well.

In this book I'll be showing you how to make it crystal clear to Google and Bing what you are and where you are.

Once search engines understand this they think like this: "OK, so this website says it is a Cabinet Store at location X ... but I'm only a machine so I need humans to confirm this"

The way they do this is to show your website high up in their search results now and then over a period of time and see how humans react to you. In SEO we sometimes refer to this as the Google Dance because where you appear in the search results 'dances' around.

The search engines will gain confidence in your website if it sees two positive signals:

  1. SIGNAL 1: People who see you in the search results click through to your website more often than they click through to the websites of your competitors
  2. SIGNAL 2: People who do click through don't click the back button too fast ... or too often

Signal 2 helps search engines remove spammers - those who pretend to be a Cabinet Store but theY ARE really offering something else like casino games, adult content or that "gadget everyone is going crazy for". You know the type of thing.

But there are plenty of other reasons people back out:

  • Your website looks like a high school project from the 1990s
  • It takes ages for your website to open when someone is using a mobile device on a slow internet connection and they don't want to wait.
  • Your content is difficult to view and read on a tablet or smartphone

So website design and technical performance are key to getting, and maintaining, high rankings and this book will show you how to avoid the pot holes of both.

But how can you win with Signal 1 and get more people clicking through to you than to the websites of other Cabinet Stores?

Let's look at what we're aiming for and why with a search engine listing for a Cabinet Stores called Preonus in the fictional town of Woodydale.

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https://cabinetstorewoodydale.com
Preonus, Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm

OK, let's go through these:

  • 1 The domain name - it contains what you do and where you are. Search engines ignore this as a ranking signal but, despite the small size of the text, it's an important signal (often subcounciously) to humans
  • 2 The blue text - it contains what you do and where you are. Both Search engines and humans pay attention to this. Adding in a word like 'favorite' gives it a positive spin making it much more attractive to humans and giving them more confidence to click through.
  • 3 The description - it contains what you do and where you are. Search engines use this in their ranking decisions but it should also be inviting and attractive so humans want to click through.

You will have noticed that all three elements here contain what you do and where you are. This type of repetition is both a key part of SEO and effective ingredients for persuading humans to visit your website.

The listing as a whole is also 'beefy'. There is lots of information there which means you are taking up more space in the search results listings. In SEO we refer to this as 'taking up real estate'. If your listing is larger than your competitors then it is more eye catching and that is yet another factor that will win you more clicks.

I'll be covering how to achieve all of this in this book but the key question before we begin is ... "Where is your Woodydale?".

Where is your Woodydale?

Let's start at the top. Someone looking for a Cabinet Store will type into Google things like:

  • Cabinet Store + [Location] - e.g. Cabinet Store woodydale
  • Cabinet Store Owner + [Location] - e.g. Cabinet Store Owner woodydale
  • Kitchen and bathroom cabinets + [Location] - e.g. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets woodydale

These are known as 'keywords' - the word patterns you want to rank highly for in the search results of Google and Bing.

There are two other common keyword patterns often used - 'near me' and 'best'

For example:

  • Cabinet Store near me
  • Cabinet Store Owner near me
  • Kitchen and bathroom cabinets near me
  • best Cabinet Store near me
  • best Cabinet Store Owner near me

But this doesn't mean we add 'best' or 'near me' to our list of keywords we are trying to rank for because neither Google nor Bing take them literally. If you called your business 'The Near Me Cabinet Store' it wouldn't rank highly in the search results just because someone used those words.

Search engines understand the intention of 'near me'. They know the person searching is not trying to find a company by that name but a business close to them. They know where that person is located and so they can provide accurate results of nearby Cabinet Stores.

It's the same with 'best'. The search engine doesn't look around for Cabinet Stores that mention they are the best. Instead they use signals such as online reviews to decide which Cabinet Stores are 'best'.

So, for the moment, ignore 'near me' and 'best' - I'll show you how to rank for these later. For the moment the keywords we need to focus on revolve around what you do and where you are located.

The most common mistake local businesses make is to cast the net too wide. A Cabinet Store based in Sandy Hill, Paterson, New Jersey (US) might think "Wow, there are nearly 9 million people in New Jersey - if I can rank high in the search results for 'Cabinet Store new jersey' I'll have it made!"

In fact that is how a lot of your competitors will think, they get dazzled by big numbers and chase after them. There are several reasons why this approach is doomed.

Firstly, the greater the competition, the harder it is to rank highly in the search results. Let your competitors cat fight it out chasing areas with large populations. It's a pointless cat fight as I'll show you in a moment.

Secondly, even if you were to get your website to rank for something like 'Cabinet Store new jersey' the majority of people who click through will soon realise you are too far away from them and they'll hit the 'back' button. As I've already mentioned, search engines recognise and monitor this action ... and it hurts your SEO!

Thirdly, anyone who searches 'Cabinet Store new jersey' quickly realizes they are seeing too many results and most are far from where they live. So instead they do a re-search. They rethink how they are looking and try something more accurate like 'Cabinet Store paterson, new jersey'

But even Paterson has a population of over 100,000 people so that's still going to bring up a lot of Cabinet Stores, many of which aren't local to them so they refine their search even more to 'Cabinet Store sandy hill, paterson, new jersey'.

This process, in SEO, is known as the buying cycle because the user 'cycles' through ever more refined searches until they feel most of the results they are seeing are relevant.

This is where you want your website to rank highly - where the searcher thinks 'these are good results, I'm going to choose one of these'. So forget the big numbers of whole cities or states and focus on an area with a population of 10-30,000 people who are all within a 1 hour travel time.

Sandy Hill in Paterson, New Jersey has a population of 14,000 people within a quarter of a square mile so that is the geographical area to target in this example.

If you are in an area that's a bit more rural there's a different approach. For example let's say you are based in Homer, Alaska, a small city of 5,000 people. Well you might want to rank for some neighboring areas as well like Anchor Point or Fritz Creek. We'll get into how to do that later. For the moment just focus on your immediate town - in this case 'Homer'.

Keyword Tools

So we've used simple common sense to work out what you and to rank for in the search results. They come down to two patterns:

  • What you are and where you are - e.g. Cabinet Store woodydale
  • What you do and where you are - e.g. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets woodydale

But if you are reading up on SEO you might find a lot of "SEO Gurus" are telling you to use 'keyword tools'. These offer estimates for how often a particular keyword pattern is searched. Funnily enough many of these "SEO Gurus" would like to make your wallet a little lighter because they just so happen to have a paid keyword tool service.

When it comes to Local SEO ignore these because:

  1. They are usually unreliable because they are just estimators. The only people who know how often a particular search is carried out are the search engines themselves.
  2. Common Sense provides the keywords as we've just seen, no need to pay anyone to see their guesswork.

If anything these tools can be dangerous to your SEO. They can leave you believing no one searches a particular phrase so you don't try and rank for it whereas in reality it could bring you really great business.

Now, OK, Google does offer a free of charge keyword tool and you would think that would be reliable but in my experience it also over promises on ome phrases and under states others. Some of my websites get great traffic from phrases Google says are never carried out! So let's stick with common sense.

Keywords and user intentions

Modern search engines today understand user intentions better than ever before. This means you don't have to worry too much about covering all keyword patterns. Search engines understand, for example, that someone searching for 'Cabinet Store woodydale' is very similar to someone searching for 'Cabinet Store Owners woodydale' or 'Cabinet Store Owner woodydale'. So if you rank for one, you usually rank for all.

Right - so we know what we want to rank for and how we want out listing to look in the search results. Time to get practical and make this a reality!

STEP ONE: Setting up a Search Engine Optimizable Cabinet Store website

Sorting out your domain name

This is the mydomainname.com bit. It once was a direct SEO factor so if you were based in Homer and had the domain homercabinetstore.com that would help you rank for the search 'Cabinet Store homer'.

This isn't true anymore, any mention that you find around the net which claims your domain name helps your SEO is dated. But remember what we said earlier, it does have an influence on humans when they see it in the search results so we do need to choose it with care.

Going back to our example of a cabinet store based in the town of Woodydale. For such a business the domain should be either:

  • woodydalecabinetstore.com or
  • cabinetstorewoodydale.com

If both these are taken by other business try a slightly different slant like

  • woodydalescabinetstore.com or
  • cabinetstoreinwoodydale.com

Not only do these domain names help in your search results listings, they are also catchy and easy to remember. A couple of other points to keep in mind with domain names are:

  1. Don't be tempted to go with hyphens like this: woodydale-cabinet-store.com. It takes longer to say, people won't remember the hyphens, it's a mess!
  2. In the United States people expect a .com at the end and they won't remember if you choose something else like .net so don't use any other endings. If you are outside the US use the ending most common in your country - ie .co.uk for the United Kingdom, .com.au for Australia, etc, etc.

If you already have a domain name that doesn't match what I've recommended then you might be tempted to skip this step. Don't. For every step you skip you undermine your SEO overall. Take the following action:

  • If you haven't started building a website yet then do nothing. I'll be showing you how to pick up a domain name together with a website hosting service later.
  • If you have a website but it is getting no visitors then read on and I'll show you how to set up your new domain with a website hosting service (after which you can drop the old domain).

  • If you have a website which is getting some visitors that you don't want to lose or your domain name is already all over your stationary and/or advertising then continue through this guide to set up a new domain and more effective website. After this contact the company you purchased your current domain from and ask them to set up 'domain forwarding' which will, as the name suggests, forward anyone who visits your old domain to your new one.

  • If you already have a website, it gets some traffic and it contains a lot of pages (e.g. because you run a blog) then you will need to organize '301 redirects' once your new and more effective website is set up. For this I would enlist the help of a contractor from upwork.com. I've attached an appendix on using Upwork at the end of the book.

What your cabinet store website needs to be

Getting the fundamentals of a website right before you start the actual optimization of your content is like putting down good foundations before you start building the walls of your house. Skimp on the foundations and all the rest of your work is only ever going to be of limited value.

Top level website requirements for SEO

What do search engines want from every website regardless of it's content? Luckily these days it is exactly the same as what your potential customers want. We touched on some of these earlier but here is a refresher:';[wq2

  • A website which looks great in any device from the smallest smartphone to the widest desktop screen - and screens these days can come pretty small as well as pretty wide! Search engines can test this in seconds and they'll ding you for 'poor user experience' if your site falls apart on certain screen sizes.
  • A website that loads fast even if the user is standing in the middle of a field on the slowest of internet connections. Search engines obsess about load speed in this mobile world.
  • A website that works 24/7/365. Some search engines might visit your website several times a week, if it's offline too often they won't want to rank it because that would give their users a poor experience ... and then they might go off and use a different search engine.
  • A website that looks every bit as slick as your competitors because people stay longer and convert into customers more often on modern and professional Cabinet Store websites ... and search engines see this
  • A website that is secure so information your potential customers give you, say in contact forms, can't be stolen by third parties.

Now if you already have a website then you need to take action on these points first before you do anything else. As I said there is no point trying to Search Engine Optimize a Cabinet Store website which is fundamentally flawed.

It's the basics that will amplify any SEO work you do later. Set up your website the right way and Search Engine Optimization will be a whole lot easier. Do it the wrong way and it will be a constant struggle with some SEO tasks proving expensive or even impossible to achieve.

This work is also going to be crucial for turning your website visitors into customers visiting your store and purchasing. The wrong site set up leaks potential customers and wastes your SEO efforts.

The great news is you don't need to have any technical skills to make all these things happen because of instant website services that allow you to get up and running by just filling in forms and clicking buttons.

But not all of them are born equal. If SEO is your aim, then you really only have two choices:

  • Squarespace
  • Wordpress hosted with BlueHost

I'm not an affiliate of either of the above, I get no kickback if you use them. I recommend them because they are SEO effective foundations when it comes to creating websites that rank and they are what we use here at the link2light agency for many clients.

Now I know there are a myriad of other options available from Wix to Weebly to Wordpress.com but my answer to all of them is "No". None of them allow you to do SEO to the extent that SquareSpace or WordPress do. Some, like Wix, might be free and their designs (visually) can be pretty good but their search engine optimizing abilities are poor.

I could go through all the alternatives on offer out there and cover why you would struggle to SEO them but that would be a book in itself. Seriously, Squarespace or Wordpress with BlueHost because they both tick some fundamental and critical boxes:

  • They have lightning fast servers and search engines increasingly reward websites that load fast with higher rankings because they want an increasingly mobile world to get fast results.
  • They both use Content Distribution Networks (CDNs) - this basically means they will store your website at multiple locations around the globe so, yes, it will load fast no matter where the user is located. Speed, speed, speed!
  • Their servers are very reliable so you can sleep easy knowing you are not being dinged by the search engines for having a website which frequently crashes out.
  • Both of them will set up your website with an 'SSL'. Basically they will secure it so when a potential customer does something like fill in your contact form their details can't be stolen. Search engines favor websites with an 'SSL'.
  • They both have systems in place that don't allow spammers to operate so you can feel confident your website is in a good neighbourhood and won't be black listed.

So let's take a more detailed look at both of them so you can start weighing up which might suit you best.

Squarespace or Wordpress for a Cabinet Store website?
Squarespace and Wordpress are both excellent for a Cabinet Store website, you need to decide which you are most comfortable with.

Squarespace for Cabinet Store websites

Squarespace is the ultimate hassle free option with very little to learn. You just sign up, choose an off the shelf website, create pages at the click of a mouse button and fill in the ready made templates with your texts and images.

They have an extensive and impressive assortment of designs which look the part, load super fast, are mega reliable and are highly search engine optimizable. If you have absolutely no website at all right now they'll even help you set up your domain name - that mywebsitename.something bit.

Should you struggle at any point they have exceptional customer service and a great user community (see it at https://answers.squarespace.com/index.html) so you'll never be on you own with any "How to" or "Why" questions.

It really is so incredibly straightforward that any cabinet store owner could have something pretty amazing set up today.

What's not to like? Well compared to WordPress its a little more pricey. Squarespace is $12 per month while a Wordpress site can be as little as $5. What you're paying for with SquareSpace is a lot less flaffing around as you will see when you read through the WordPress option below.

Are there any other downsides? Apart from cost, if you start to get into website design and want to make certain changes or you want to start adding a lot more content and pages you might very quickly find Squarespace is restrictive. There is only so much you can do with their 'Ready Made' templates and a lot of webmasters find they are bumping their heads on the ceiling of possibilities very quickly.

That's when Wordpress comes into its own with its infinite flexibility.

Wordpress and BlueHost for Cabinet Store websites

So why do you need both Wordpress and BlueHost? Time for a little jargon:

  • "The host" - the company that will provide a server so your website is available 24/7/365
  • "The platform" - the computer programe that creates and serves up your website to people.

SquareSpace is both a Host and a Platform. The alternative is BlueHost as your Host and WordPress as the platform.

BlueHost has servers which ticks all the boxes - they are fast and reliable and there is superb customer service should you have any teething troubles.

And I know I am repeating this but it's vitally important. Don't skimp on hosting costs - cheap hosts have servers which are slow and unreliable - two major factors that search engines take into account when deciding where your website should rank.

Super cheap hosting companies are also often home to websites run by spammers and it's possible that if you end up on a server with them you may end up blacklisted by search engines - or at the very least marked down because of your shadey neighbours!

For less than $5 per month BlueHost will do the complete set up for you. They'll install Wordpress, sort out your SSL (the thing which makes your site secure) and even organize a domain name if you don't have one yet. In many ways, up to this point, it will feel as easy as SquareSpace.

However what you will have is a bulk standard WordPress website that look's pretty awful. SquareSpace has a menu of templates for you to just choose and click, in WordPress you will need to find a 'theme' - their word for a 'website design'. Many are free but some have one off or subscription costs.

Standard Wordpress Theme
The standard Wordpress theme is a terrible design on both desktop and mobile!

You'll need to track down and install a 'theme' from the seemingly endless options out there. Then spend some time with their tutorials learning how to make pages for your website. After that comes the task of adding some extras (known as 'plugins') - either for functionaliy (e.g. so you can add a contact form) or so you can add certain SEO features.

I'll talk you through how to do all of that shortly including which theme I recommend. What I'm driving at here is that there is a much steeper learning curve for WordPress. It's a learning curve anyone can achieve but it will require you to invest some time. More time than SquareSpace but in return for more possibilities later.

The final downside to WordPress is that you need to constantly update it to make sure your website remains secure. This is a click of a button activity but the updates occassionaly cause conflicts with the plugins (which all, also need updating from time to time) and crash your entire website leaving you to enjoy an evening on a forum trying to get others to help you figure out which plugin is guilty.

Squarespace or Wordpress for your Cabinet Store?

It's all starting to sound pretty depressing for Wordpress - it's not that bad and problems are rare but I'm flagging it up so you can make a choice with your eyes wide open. Personally I would put it this way:

  • Do you want to create, over time, a lot of pages with a lot of content, be that general information or a blog? Then choose WordPress.
  • Do you want to be able to make design changes without restrictions? Then choose WordPress.
  • Are you are planning a fairly simple website (1-5 pages) and you then just want to walk away from it and get on with other aspects of yoru business? Then choose SquareSpace.
  • Are you the kind of person that just doesn't gel with technology and even your washing machine sometimes refuses to do what you ask? Then choose SquareSpace.

All I can say is some cabinet store owners take to WordPress like a duck to water and love how you can do so much more with it than Squarespace will ever allow. For others learning how to fit everything together and make WordPress work becomes bang-your-head-on-a-table kind of stuff. It's a personal thing and only you can decide.

But if you really aren't sure yet then SquareSpace offers a 14 day free trial and BlueHost has a 30 day Money Back Guarantee. You can set up both without needing a domain name, they will give you a unique URL so you can view the sites. That means you can go ahead and start making your website on both to see which one you get on with better.

The tutorials in this book will cover both SquareSpace and WordPress with BlueHost so you'll be able to get up and running quickly. A clear winner will emerge quickly in your mind and then you can drop the one you don't get on with.

SquareSpace set up basics

SSquareSpace Step by Step
  1. Open the SquareSpace home page and then click 'Templates'
    SquareSpace set up step one
  2. Scroll down the page until you see the Bailard Theme
    SquareSpace set up step Two
  3. By hovering over the templates, you can click the 'Start with Bailard' link to begin.
    SquareSpace set up step three
  4. A Squarespace account is required to access the site. Click on 'Continue with Email'.
    SquareSpace set up step four
  5. The next step is to provide the information attached to the image below. Then You will be able to continue to the next page.
    SquareSpace set up step five
  6. After Signup, you will be directed to this page. Enter the site title.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace set up step six
  7. Click on continue to begin building your site.
    SquareSpace set up step seven

A quick side note. SquareSpace don't provide .com.au domain names. If you are based in Australia and need this type of domain name then I'd recommend Crazy Domains (https://www.crazydomains.com.au/) who specialise in domain names down under! Again I don't get any kick back from this company - I just find them reliable and their customer service is pretty good in comparison to others. i.e. not stellar but not impossible to get through!

Now SquareSpace websites look great out of the packet - to start personalizing it follow their very comprehensive starter tutorials to experiment with what is possible. You'll find the first of these at https://support.squarespace.com/hc/en-us/articles/212260078.

If you have definitely decided not to use Wordpress you can now jump to Creating the basic structure of your Cabinet Store website. However if you are going with WordPress (or both WordPress and SquareSpace for the moment) read on.

WordPress set up basics

w WordPress Step by Step
  1. To find out more about BlueHost and order their Wordpress hosting package visit https://www.bluehost.com
  2. From the top menu select 'WordPress' -> 'WordPress Hosting'.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step one
  3. Scroll down until the pricing table is visible.Select their 'Basic' plan. You can always upgrade later if you need to.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step two
  4. Click "I'll create my domain later".
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step two
  5. On the next screen fill out your account details. In the 'Package Extras' area untick all the boxes although consider the 'Single Domain SSL' option.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step three
  6. Click on 'more payment options' and select paypal to pay with the paypal.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step four
  7. After fill out account details, tik the terms and service and click on 'submit' button.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step four
  8. Next, create your account
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step five
  9. Type your password and click 'Create Account'.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step six
  10. Then, click on 'go to login' button
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step seven
  11. Next step,log into your account using the password you have entered before
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eight
  12. Now click on 'create your website'
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step nine
  13. Select business
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step ten
  14. Click 'Get started'.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eleven
  15. Skip this step.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step twelve
  16. Skip this step as well.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step thirteen
  17. Give the site name and a tagline. After that, click 'Continue'.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step fourteen
  18. Skip this step.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step fifteen
  19. You will then be forwarded to your BlueHost admin panel.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step sixteen
  20. Click My Sites from the left hand menu and then Manage Site.
    Preonus Cabi...
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step seventeen
  21. In the next screen click Log in to WordPress (top right of the screen).
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eighteen
  22. You will then be forwarded to WordPress admin panel. Scroll down, click 'Launch with confidence'. After that click 'Launch your site' button.
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eighteen
  23. Back to the Bluehost admin panel. Click Home in the menu and right click of your temporary domain name.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eighteen
  24. Click 'Open link in the new tab'.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eighteen

Now, with your website open you are probably pondering how bloody awful it looks. That's because it will be using the standard Wordpress 'theme' which will make you want to cry! A 'theme' is just a fancy way of saying 'a website design'.

You'll need to install a better theme but again you don't need any tech skills to do this.

WordPress off the shelf themes for Cabinet Stores

There are thousands and thousands of WordPress themes out there - it's mind numbing and you could easily spend days routing through demos and trying them out. However I'm going to recommend you use Mesmerize Pro for the following reasons:

  • It loads fast - yes I keep banging on about websites that load fast being important to SEO ... and I really mean it!
  • It's easy to use - there is a built in website page builder that makes it as simple to create and edit pages as SquareSpace
  • It's nearly ready to go - we can use one of their demo sites which can, with a few tweaks, become a Cabinet Store website

Mesmerize Pro costs (either a one off lifetime fee or annual subscription) but I am going to say the same thing as I did for hosting - there are other options out there but unless you know how to speed test them you could end up with a theme that severly slows down your website and shoots your SEO efforts in the foot.

On a side note I am not an affiliate of the company that created and maintains Mesmerize and I get no commission from them. I am recommending this theme purely because of it's SEO merits.

OK - let's get Mesmerize Pro up and running.

w WordPress Step by Step
  1. Log in to your BlueHost account at https://my.bluehost.com
  2. Click My Sites from the left hand menu and then Manage Site
    Preonus Cabi...
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step seventeen
  3. In the next screen click Log in to WordPress.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Bluehost sign up with WordPress step eighteen
  4. In the menu, hover over 'Plugins' and click 'Installed Plugins'
    Bluehost Jetpack Deactivated step one
  5. Scroll down, just click Deactivate the Jetpack Plugin. We will be back what Plugins are later.
    Bluehost Jetpack Deactivated step two
  6. Click deactivate button again in the pop up window.
    WordPress Theme install step three
  7. The WordPress Admin Screen will open. At the bottom of the left hand menu hover over 'Appearance' and then click 'Themes' from the menu that pops out.
    WordPress Theme install step one
  8. The next screen will show a handful of themes. Ignore these and click 'Add New'
    WordPress Theme install step two
  9. The screen that opens will show lots and lots of themes. In the search box on the right hand side search for 'MesMerize'
    WordPress Theme install step three
  10. By hovering over the themes, you can view the install button.
    WordPress Theme install step four
  11. Click 'Install' and wait here ultill you see 'activate' button.
    WordPress Theme install step five
  12. Click 'Activate'.
    WordPress Theme install step six
  13. Click on Install Mesmerize homepage Button.
    WordPress Theme demo import step one
  14. Then, Click on Activate
    WordPress Theme demo import step two
  15. Hover on Appearance and click Customize.
    WordPress Theme demo import step three
  16. We will import the demo and customize the site with the pro versions of Mesmerize.So, Click close icon to close it.
    WordPress Theme demo import step four
  17. Click on the Upgrate to PRO button.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    WordPress Theme demo import step five
  18. Choose your Plan to 'Business' and click 'Buy Now'.
    WordPress Theme demo import step six
  19. Fill up all the details and click "Pay".
    WordPress Theme demo import step seven
  20. After Paying you will get a email like this. Click on the download button. Then, Collect the License Key from here. It will be used later when we will varify the theme license.
    WordPress Theme demo import step eight
  21. After click on the download button, download the file in the 'download' folder in your computer. Then go back to the WordPress Dashboard.
    WordPress Theme demo import step nine
  22. Now, We need to add that pro versions of Mesmerize theme. To do it, Hover on Appearance and click Themes.
    WordPress Theme demo import step ten
  23. Click on the Add new button.
    WordPress Theme demo import step eleven
  24. Next, Click on the Upload button.
    WordPress Theme demo import step twelve
  25. Then, Click Browse
    WordPress Theme demo import step thirteen
  26. Navigate 'Download' folder on your computer then click on the zip file which was downloaded previously. Then click 'open'.
    WordPress Theme demo import step fourteen
  27. Click Install Now button.
    WordPress Theme demo import step fifteen
  28. Click Activate to activate the theme.
    WordPress Theme demo import step sixteen
  29. Click on the Mesmerize info from the left side menu to add Activation Key.
    WordPress Theme demo import step seventeen
  30. Click Theme license and put the activation key. Afterwards click on Activate License
    WordPress Theme demo import step eighteen
  31. Click Demo import.
    WordPress Theme demo import step nineteen
  32. Find the 'Business' demo and click Import.
    WordPress Theme demo import step twenty
  33. Click on the INSTALL PLUGINS AND IMPORT button. Then wait a few secconds, it may take some times to install the demo site.
    WordPress Theme demo import step twenty-one
  34. Click See the result. Then it will open a new tab in the browser.
    WordPress Theme demo import step twenty-two
  35. This is the 'Business' demo site. Next step is to customize it. Back to the 'previous tab' in the browser.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    WordPress Theme demo import step twenty-three

Creating the basic structure of your Cabinet Store website

Four Building Blocks

Right, be it Squarespace or Wordpress your website is now set up ... or perhaps your websites are now set up if you are currently experimenting with both.

Now we'll create the basics for a standard cabinet store website (we can get fancy later). You need:

  • A home page which summarizes the things you do
  • A contact page so prospective customers can get in touch with you or come to your Cabinet Store.
  • A page about the cabinets you offer
  • A page about your business - your history as a cabinet store owner, qualifications, client testimonials, etc.

Now you might want to go further than this:

  • a page about each cabinet you offer or pages with related groups of cabinets.
  • a page about each key person at your store

That's up to you, we'll discuss the limited SEO merits of this extra content later but it could prove a positive experience for your visitors so I'm not throwing cold water on it!

For now go thourgh now and add the basics changes to your SquareSpace website.

SSquareSpace Step by Step
  1. Open https://account.squarespace.com/ and click on the "Website" button from SquareSpace Dashboard, you will directed to this page.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step one
  2. Click on Pages
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step two
  3. To change the header background, click Edit.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step three
  4. Hover on header and click on the EDIT SITE HEADER button.
    SquareSpace header setup step four
  5. Click Style
    SquareSpace header setup step five
  6. Next, click Dynamic
    SquareSpace header setup step six
  7. Then, click Solid and That will change the header backgrond to white.
    SquareSpace header setup step seven
  8. Click Back
    SquareSpace header setup step eight
  9. To hide "Take on Action" button Click Elements.
    SquareSpace header setup step nine
  10. Click on the icon to switch off and remove the "Take on Action" button.
    SquareSpace header setup step ten
  11. Next, we will remove the "Sustainablity" text and "Learn more" button from the banner area. To remove text, click on the text.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step eleven
  12. Select the text and click Backspace on the keyboard.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step twelve
  13. Then, we need to remove the 'Learn more' button from the banner area. click Learn more button.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step thirteen
  14. Click Delete icon. In the popup window, click 'Delete' to confirm.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step fourteen
  15. Hover over the text and double-click on it.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step fourteen
  16. Select the heading text using the mouse "We conserve land through outreach and restoration" and press Backspace on the keyboard.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step fourteen
  17. To save the changes, on the top-left corner hover on Done and click Save.
    Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace header setup step fifteen

Next step is to work with the pages that you need. For the moment you can just call your pages "Home", "Contact", " Cabinets" and "About". Add some appropriate text you feel comfortable with to each one so you have the structure of the website taking shape. We'll come back to SEO this later.

SSquareSpace Step by Step
  1. Click on contact and drag it to the below. Then place it exactly after 'Read me'.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace menu setup step one
  2. Drag "What we do" page from 'About' and place it above contact. That will be our 'About' page.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace menu setup step two
  3. Click on setting icon to rename.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace menu setup step three
  4. Rename About at the "Navigation title" and the "url slug" then click save.
    SquareSpace menu setup step four
  5. Currently, We don't need "News" page. To delete "news" page, click on the setting icon.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Starts with
    SquareSpace menu setup step five
  6. Scroll down a little bit, then click DELETE PAGE.
    SquareSpace menu setup step six
  7. Next, click DELETE to confirm.
    SquareSpace menu setup step seven
  8. Also, we don't need "About" folder which is containing "Projects", "Partners" page. So we need to delete "About" folder. To delete the "About” folder, repeat the process as you have done to delete the News page.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Starts with
    SquareSpace menu setup step eight
  9. The 'Take action' page should be removed as well. Next step is to rename the "Read me" page to Cabinets . To do it, click on the setting icon.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Starts with
    SquareSpace menu setup step nine
  10. Rename the "Page title" and the "Navigation title" to Cabinets, then the "url slug" to cabinets .
    Cabinets
    Cabinets
    cabinets
    SquareSpace menu setup step ten

We've added these pages not just because they make sense but because when a search engine finds a website claiming to be about a cabinet store they are going to expect to find these pages and they are going to expect to find certain types of information on each of these pages. We'll come to those types of information shortly but the point I'm making here is if you try to be too clever with your website design and layout you can often shoot yourself in the foot on the SEO side.

Go through the steps and make necessary changes to your WordPress website.

w WordPress Step by Step
  1. Click pages.
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step one
  2. Hover over 'People' and click Quick Edit.
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step two
  3. Rename page 'title' to Cabinets and rename 'slug' to cabinets .
    Cabinets
    cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step three
  4. Click Update
    Cabinets
    cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step four
  5. Hover over blog page and click 'trash'. we will talk about it later in the tutorial.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step five
  6. Hover over Appearance and click Menus
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step five
  7. We don't need 'Home' in the menu. To remove it, click on arrow icon to open settings. Then, click Remove
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step six
  8. Drag Cabinets above about page.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step eight
  9. Click on Save Menu. That's all for the menu setup.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step nine
  10. Next step is to customize the Site header. To do it, click Customize.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress menu customization step ten
  11. Click Hero > Front Page Hero.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    CABINETS
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step one
  12. Scroll down little bit and on the Content layout, click Down Arrow icon.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step two
  13. Select Text on center.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step three
  14. Increase Top and Bottom's Content Spacing 20%.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step four
  15. Untick Show Motto, Show subtitle and Show buttons as well.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step five
  16. Click Publish button to save the changes and click on Left Arrow icon to back to the previous page.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step six
  17. Click Inner Pages Hero.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step seven
  18. Untick Show subtitle and increase content spacing top and bottom 20%.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step eight
  19. Click 'Left arrow' to back to the previous page.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step nine
  20. Again, Click 'Left arrow' to back to the previous page.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step ten
  21. Click Navigation > Front Page Navigation.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step eleven
  22. Click 'Normal Menu settings' button.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step twelve
  23. Click drop down icon to change the color.
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step thirteen
  24. Select white and click choose button.
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step fourteen
  25. Do same for the 'Sticky menu settings' and after that click 'publish' to save the changes.
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step fiftteen
  26. Click left 'arrow icon' to go back to the previous page.
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step sixteen
  27. Click 'Inner page navigation'.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step seventeen
  28. Repeat the same process to change the Inner page navigation color for both Normal menu setting and Sticky menu setting.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step eightteen
  29. Click Publish and go back to the previous page.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step nineteen
  30. Click 'Arrow icon' again to go back one more page.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step twenty
  31. Then, scroll down a little bit and click General Settings > Additional CSS.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step twentyone
  32. We need to add these 8 lines of CSS to design the header titles and the header image.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step twently two
  33. After that, click Publish to save the changes and then, click Close button. That's all for Header Customization.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress header customization step twently three

Defining your home page

Your "home" page is going to be whatever someone sees when they go to https://yourdomainname.com. In both SquareSpace and WordPress you need to define this:

In Wordpress you'll also need to set up your 'permalinks'. I'll explain why later. For the moment just follow the tutorial at https://www.bluehost.com/blog/wordpress/how-to-customize-your-wordpress-permalink-settings-11280/ choosing 'Post Name' as your permalink setting.

Choosing images for your Cabinet Store website

Obviously an all text website is going to look pretty dry and uninviting. You'll be needing some images.

If your pages are going to look great then your images need to look great. In an ideal world you'll have some excellent pictures in and around your Store. The ones which carry the most power are:

  • anything with you or a member from your team and a customer ... both smiling. You don't have to be looking at the camera but you both have to be happy!
  • photos of you or a member of your team at your Store carrying out an action like technicians constructing a kitchen cabinet in an apartment, installing a cabinet or a restorer restoring a cabinet ... and if there are any faces in it they should be smiling!
  • a photo of everyone on your team inside or outside your Cabinet Store ... smiling!
Smiley Emoji

Why all the smiley-smiley stuff? Because you are providing a solution to a problem and if someone has a problem they are unhappy and they want to be happy. If they see you, your team and your current customers are happy you are selling the 'lifestyle' part of the solution ... happiness because the problem is gone and it was you who made it go away!

Now although you don't need any kind of special equipment to snap your own images, most smartphones will take photos of perfectly good quality, this is one area where I would strongly recommend hiring a professional photographer. You see to get images which truly inspire customer confidence in your business is much more than the technical quality of a photo.

Professional photographers understand lighting, color compliments, scene preparation, people positioning, etc, etc, etc. And after they have taken their snaps they'll do some final tidying up on software like Photoshop to give your business images the slick look that they deserve.

Stock photos for Cabinet Stores

But sometimes you just aren't comfortable with your own pictures or your budget is simply too tight to hire a pro. So where to go then? Stock images. I use:

Cabinet Store related image
A cabinet store related stock image

Now you are going to need:

  • One large image - to replace the 'header' or 'banner' image. This is the forest picture in Square Space or the picture of the glasses sitting on the table in WordPress.
  • A variety of smaller images - to use throughout the website and make it look attractive.

If you are taking images from stock websites then they normally offer a variety of sizes (in terms of width and height). Here's an example:

For the 'header' image choose the closest option above 1,600 pixels in width. For the other images choose the closest option to 1,000 pixels in width (but at least 800 pixels wide).

And of course remember to cancel your subscription when you are all done.

Obviously it goes without saying, but I'll say it anyway, don't use stock photos that suggest your cabinet store is something that it is not. Don't, for example, use images of premises which are substantially better than yours.

To do so increases the chances of customers becoming suspicious when they see the reality of your business and that raises the specter of bad online reviews. Online reviews are something I'll cover later as they are important to your overall online presence - all I'll say for now is that you really don't want to be racking up negative feedback from customers who feel your website mislead them.

Optimizing images before loading

If your photos are coming off your own camera or Smartphone or they have come from a professional photographer then they are going to be huge in terms of width, dimension and size. This means they could easily slow your website loading speed down to a crawl, especially for people trying to open it via a Smartphone. If I haven't hammered this home enough already ... this is SEO suicide!

If you got stock images as I described above the images won't be as big but they'll still need some additional preparation.

Let's start with the large picture which you will use in your 'header':

  1. Open https://bulkresizephotos.com/en
  2. Click 'Choose Images' and navigate to wherever you stored your images on your computer.
    Bulk image resizer step one
  3. Select the image and click 'Open'
    Bulk image resizer step two
  4. Click Width
    Bulk image resizer step three
  5. Give width to '1600px' and click start.
    Bulk image resizer step four
  6. Resized image downloaded to the download folder on your computer. Navigate the download folder then right click on it. After that, click 'Rename'.
    Bulk image resizer step five
  7. Now, my advice here is to change the name of your image by adding '-r' to the end. First of all, some systems like Windows can get confused and show that the image has not been resized. And second, because it helps you keep track of what you are resized and what you haven't
    Bulk image resizer step six

For all your other images:

  1. Repeat the above steps but give width '800px' instead of '1600px'
    Bulk image resizer step seven

This reduces the actual size of the image (width and height) to dimension more suitable for computer and smartphone screens.

Next run the image through Shortpixel's image compression tool (https://shortpixel.com/online-image-compression). This won't change the dimensions but it will optimize the file size so its as small as it can be without losing quality.

  1. Click on the 'Drag up to 50 files here to optimize' box to upload images.
    Shortpixel image compressor step one
  2. Navigate the file on your computer and click open to upload photos.
    Shortpixel image compressor step two
  3. Click 'Download icon' to download compressd and optimized photos.
    Shortpixel image compressor step three

If you are using WordPress there is a Shortpixel plugin but my general advice is to keep the number of plugins you use to a minimum for easier long term maintenance and, unless you are blogging, image preparation is a one off task so no need to clutter up your WordPress with unneeded plugins.

Adding images to your website

OK. So now you can be confident that the images you have are not going to kill your SEO. I'm going to show you how to upload the 'header' image on to your website.

In these steps I'm going to talk about 'ALT' text. This is 'Alternative' text for your image which explains to search engines what the image actually is. It should be fairly short and to the point, here's an example of a picture with kittens .. because everybody loves kittens.

Now imagine you are trying to SEO a page for the keyword 'kitten food'

These kittens loved our new range of Munchy kitten food
  • Bad Alt Text - 'Kittens' (Too short, it does not fully explain the image or contain your keyword "kitten food").
  • Bad Alt Text - 'Kittens, kitten food, kittens and kitten food' (Not a description, just a list of keywords).
  • Bad Alt Text - 'Kittens that like kitten food, little kittens after kitten food, baby kittens after kitten food, small cats that like kitten food, kittens outside after kitten food' (Too long and contains 'keyword stuffing' - using the same word over and over again - search engines do not like this).
  • Bad Alt Text - 'Kitten food' (Does not reflect the contents of the image).
  • Good Alt Text - 'Kittens enjoying our new range of Munchy kitten food' (Short but accurate and gets the important keyword in which will be seen by search engines)

On that final point you might be asking "How do search engines know the the does not reflect the content of the image?". Because search engines are getting better and better and being able to "see" images just like you and I can. If they think you are trying to fool them they'll penalise you which will take your SEO backwards.

So let's put this into action for your business. Let's say you have an image of interior of a kitchen cabinet. A good alt description might be:

"At Preonus Cabinet Store in Woodydale, we have been offering high-quality cabinet solutions for your home or business since 2001."

Here we have accurately described the image while getting in our all important keywords - where we are and what we do.

Now that you have well optimized images and you know how to add ALT text we'll now go step by step through replacing the 'header' images on your website.

In SquareSpace

s SquareSpace Step by Step
  1. Click Pages
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step one
  2. Click on 'Home' then click 'Edit'.
    Cabinets
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace replace image step two
  3. By pressing on the icon, drag it below to increase image height.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step three
  4. Increase image height to fit it well.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step four
  5. Place the 'text' in the middle of the image.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step five
  6. Next, Click on the banner image and then click 'EDIT SECTION'.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step six
  7. Click Background.
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step seven
  8. Click Replace. After that click Upload File.
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step eight
  9. Navigate and click on the image on your computer which was compressed then, click on 'Open'.
    SquareSpace replace image step nine
  10. To save the Changes, click 'Save'.
    Starts With You
    Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace replace image step ten

In WordPress

w WordPress Step by Step
  1. In the WordPress Admin, hover over 'Appearance' and click 'Customize'.
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step one one
  2. Then, click Hero > Front Page Hero.
    CABINETS
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    ABOUT
    CONTACT
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step one two
  3. Below the under background heading, click 'Options'.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step one three
  4. Click 'Change file'
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step one four
  5. Click 'Upload file' and click 'Seclect files' button
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step one five
  6. Here, navigate to wherever you stored your images on your computer. Then select the image and click 'Open'.
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step six
  7. Add the 'Alt Text' and click 'Choose file' button.
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step seven
  8. Click 'Publish' to save the changes.
    what happens while busy making other p
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step eight
  9. Click 'left arrow icon'.
    Life is what happens while making other plans
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step nine
  10. Click 'Inner Page Hero'.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Life is what h making other
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step ten
  11. In the backgournd section, click 'Options'.
    Life is what happens busy making other plans
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step eleven
  12. Here, add the image as you did with 'Front Page Hero' background image. Just Click 'Add new image' button and upload the image. Remember to add 'Alt text' as well.
    is what happens usy making other
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step twelve
  13. Click the 'Publish' button
    ife what happens while busy making other plan
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step thirteen
  14. Click 'close' icon in the top left to go back to the WordPress Dashboard.
    is what happens making other pla
    Bluehost wordpress replace header image step fourteen

Now I'm not going to go through the whole process of building out a complete website here. The purpose of the steps so far has been:

  • To get the structure of the site right - 4 pages
  • To get the images prepared and how to add them in a search engine friendly way - just remember the importance of that ALT

So that's a basic website set up. You now have:

  • A secure website that loads pages fast and works 24/7/365
  • A basic structure of 4 key pages
  • The know how to prepare and upload images in a way that won't slow down page loading

So what about the rest of the website content? This course is not about website design and the step by step guides to SquareSpace and Mesmerize are available from the makers in the links below so no need to repeat them here. Now is the time for you to go through the pages and add the content and images in the way you want. Take inspiration from other Cabinet Store websites and think about what would be useful for visitors to know as well as what would inspire them to visit your store.

Have the confidence to experiment through trial and error and you'll soon get the hang of either or both editors.

The only place not to touch is the 'footer' area of the site. We'll cover that in the next section of the course because the content here is important to your SEO efforts.

  1. In SquareSpace this is your 'footer' area:
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace fotter area setup step one
  2. In WordPress this is your 'footer' area:
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    CABINETS
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace fotter area setup step two

Keeping Wordpress up to date

One final point on WordPress if you are still undecided on whether to use it or opt for SquareSpace. Every so often you'll see a notice in your Wordpress admin screen recommending that you update to the latest version, usually just to keep everything secure. That's easy, you just click a button and it happens ... but then your website disappears! Not always, it's rare but it does happen.

Why? Usually because one or more of the plugins is out of date and is no longer compatible with the latest version of Wordpress so you need to disable them all and then re-enable them one by one to find the guilty plugin ... and then go off and search for a newer version or a replacement.

All the plugins I recommend are very well supported and kept up to date (although you will need to activate these updates - I'll show you how later) so crashes are rare but it can still be a bit of a flaff.

I'm just calling this issue out here because if you are still undecided about whether to pick WordPress or SquareSpace then take this into account in your thinking.

To minimize any issues first make sure any plugins you don't use are disabled:

w WordPress Step by Step
  1. From the main WordPress Admin page click 'Plugins' in the left hand menu
    Bluehost wordpress disable plugin step one
  2. Currently, We don't need the 'OptinMonster' Plugin. So, we need to disable it. To do it, click 'Deactivate'.
    Bluehost wordpress disable plugin step two
  3. Similarly, repeat this for the plugins 'WPForms Lite', 'Google Analytics for WordPress by MonsterInsights' and 'Creative mail by Constant' as well.
    Bluehost wordpress disable plugin step threee

My recommendation is then to make a diary note to check your plugins for updates once a month and always before you update WordPress itself. Here's how:

  1. Backup your WordPress site (just in case) - https://www.bluehost.com/help/article/wordpress-tools-backup-restore
  2. From the main WordPress Admin page click 'Plugins' in the left hand menu.
    Bluehost wordpress update the plugin step one
  3. You'll see a list of plugins. Look for text in a yellow box next to each of them thats starts 'There is a new version of'
    Bluehost wordpress update the plugin step two
  4. Click the link 'update now'
    Bluehost wordpress update the plugin step three
STEP TWO: Search Engine Optimizing a Cabinet Store website

What is the most Search Engine Optimizable website?

Our next job is to "Search Engine Optimize" the pages you have made so search engines are confident that you are who you say you are. Without this you are unlikely to rank and worse still, any potential customers who do find your website through other means won't feel confident to visit your store.

Everything I'm going to cover here assumes you've read STEP ONE : Setting up a Search Engine Optimizable Cabinet Store Website and implemented the actions. If you haven't set up your website this way you're going to be doing SEO with one hand tied behind your back and a lot of what I'll explain from here won't make sense or you won't be able to implement it.

So in short order your website should be either:

  • on Squarespace
  • on Wordpress hosted by BlueHost.

Your website should have:

  • A Home Page - a summary of the cabinets you offer and who you are
  • A contact page - so prospective customers can get in touch with you or come to your Cabinet Store
  • A page about the Cabinets you offer
  • A page about you - you're history as a cabinet store owner, qualifications, client testimonials, etc.

If you have added more pages than this such as a blog or a dedicated page about each cabinet that's no problem and will certainly do no harm but I'm going to stick to talking about the four key pages.

As a reminder these pages are not just there because they make sense, they are there because search engines like Google expect them to be there. They are signals that this website really is a website about a Cabinet Store and gives the search engines confidence to rank you in the right place.

Now you have probably seen some websites where all the information is presented on a single page. This is possible but it only really allows 'thin' content, the most basic information about a business.

You are going to want to be more comprehensive in order to gain traction in the search results and single page websites with a lot of content become difficult to navigate (especially on mobile devices) putting off potential customers. They hit the back button in large numbers which in turn sends a signal to the search engines that you should rank lower. As such I recommend you stick with a 4+ page structure and make it count. How? Well that's where we'll go now!

At this point you should also have added relevant text and images to each page so that, from your perspective, the site looks "finished". Visually it should be looking pretty good for potential customers but are Google and Bing going to understand it?

Confused Google Bot

And even if they understand it will they believe it?

Let's start by getting some key bits of information in the right places.

What do you want your Cabinet Store website to rank for?

When it comes to SEO for a local business this isn't rocket science. People searching for your Cabinet Stores will type into Google and Bing things like:

  • Cabinet Store + [Location] - e.g. Cabinet Store Woodydale
  • Cabinet Store Owner + [Location] - e.g. Cabinet Store Owner Woodydale
  • Kitchen and bathroom cabinets + [Location] - e.g. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets Woodydale

Or they might use:

  • Cabinet Store near me
  • Cabinet Store Owner near me
  • Kitchen and bathroom cabinets near me

Now a note on 'near me'. Some clients ask me if I can optimize their website so it comes up when people search '[business type] near me' by adding the words 'near me' into the website in key locations where it would influence the search engines. This doesn't work on two levels:

  • There is no point you showing up in a search being carried out by someone on the East Coast of the United States if you are based on the West Coast.
  • Search Engines don't take the phrase 'near me' literally. Search Engines know where the person doing the search is located and they know where you are located (or they will when we have finished this course) so they use this information to create their search results .... regardless of how many times you include the phrase 'near me' on your website.

But back to the search phrases your potential customers will be using to find businesses like yours. There is one thread that runs through them all ... 'location'. So how to be sure Google and Bing 'get' where you are?

Adding your location the SEO way

Yes, you have probably put your address (and/or the areas you cover) on your contact page but that's not strong enough. You need to repeat your location (and/or the locations you serve) on every single page of your site so Google and Bing realize it is a key part of your content.

So where to put this text? At the bottom of every page of your website. This is where people expect to find it and, importantly, where search engines expect to find it.

In SquareSpace:

  1. Click 'Pages'.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Starts With You
    SquareSpace updating address step one
  2. Click 'Contact' to edit Contact page.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Starts W
    SquareSpace updating address step two
  3. Click 'Edit'.
    Cabinets
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Starts With
    SquareSpace updating address step three
  4. Scroll down, hover over text and double-click on the text then you will be able to update the text with your own address.
    SquareSpace updating address step four
  5. Scroll down to the bottom of the page, and click the EDIT FOOTER button.
    SquareSpace updating address step five
  6. We need to remove the Footer text that says "Made with SquareSpace". Hover over the text, then double-click on 'Made in SquareSpace'. Next, you can remove the text by clicking on the Backspace button on your computer.
    SquareSpace updating address step six
  7. In a similar process in the footer, update the address with your own address. Just click on the text and update it. To save all of the changes made, click on Save.
    SquareSpace updating address step seven

In WordPress

  1. In the WordPress admin panel, click pages.
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step one
  2. Find out contact and click 'Edit with mesmerize'.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step two
  3. Scroll down to the bottom, hover over the text under the 'Visit us'.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    CABINETS
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step three
  4. Click on the text of 'Address' and replace it with your own address. Similarly, replace the phone number and email as well. For the social icon, just click on the icon you want to add url and place the url in the 'Url' box.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    CABINETS
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step four
  5. Click the 'Build using WordPress and Mesmerize' text.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Cabinets
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step five
  6. In the left side, scroll down. In the 'Copyright Text' section, Keep the {year} and {blogname} and remove the 'Build using WordPress and Mesmerize' text.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Cabinets
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step six
  7. Then, place your address here.
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step sevem
  8. Scroll down, click the Footer Colors options button and click on the paragraph color down arrow.
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step eight
  9. Add paragraph color '#3d3d3d' and click choose button.
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step nine
  10. Similarly add color '#3d3d3d' to the anchor color as well.
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step ten
  11. After all the changes, make sure you have clicked Publish button to keep the changes.
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step eleven
  12. Click close button to go to the WordPress dashboard.
    Bluehost wordpress updating address step twelve

Google and Bing will now see your location, or the locations you serve, on every page and because they are repeated on every page they will give this information more weight when deciding what to rank you for.

But that said, regard what we have just covered here as the 'one piece of the jigsaw' in persuading search engines to believe you are where you say you are or you serve the areas you say you serve. If it really were that simple spammers would wreak havoc with search engines!

We'll come back later to other signals which will further confirm your location and add these in until Google and Bing can be in no doubt about where you are based and/or the areas you serve.

Optimizing your URL and page titles

Right, you have four pages (perhaps a couple more). Your home page will have a URL like 'https://mydomainname.com/'.

Your other pages will have URLs like 'https://mydomainname.com/something/' - the bit called 'something' is often referred to as the slug and that's what we are interested in.

So looking at your contact page first. Is the slug something like /contact/ and the main title visitors see something like 'Contact'? That's what most businesses have but these titles and slugs don't help a search engine much and they place weight on these areas. Better would be:

  • Slug: /contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet-store/
  • Title: Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store

Now you've got those all important words (what you are and where you are) in your url and page title. Here's how to do it:

In Squarespace

  1. Click on 'Pages' in the home menu
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Starts With You
    Squarespace title and slug setup step one
  2. Hover over the page and click the gear icon ()
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Starts With Yo
    Squarespace title and slug setup step two
  3. Change the title and scroll down to the 'URL Slug' box and change the slug. Next click 'save' to save your changes
    Contact Woodyale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet-store
    Squarespace title and slug setup step three
  4. Now, Click 'Contact' page and Click 'EDIT' to add title
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Cabinets
    Starts With You
    Squarespace title and slug setup step four
  5. Double-click on the text 'Contact'.
    Cabinets
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    ADD SECTION
    Contact
    Squarespace title and slug setup step five
  6. Replace the text with the with own.
    Cabinets
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodayle's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Squarespace title and slug setup step six
  7. Hover over 'Done' and Click 'Save'.
    Contact Woodyale's Cabinet Store
    enous Cabinet Store
    Squarespace title and slug setup step seven
  8. Now, the text that we replaced here looks very large after changing it to 'Heading 1". We need to make it smaller. Click 'Home' at the top left side to go back to the previous page.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Contact Woodyale's Cabinet Store
    Squarespace title and slug setup step eight
  9. Click Design > Custom CSS.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodyale's Cabinet Store
    Squarespace title and slug setup step nine
  10. Add those eight lines off CSS here.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodayle's Fav
    Squarespace title and slug setup step ten
  11. Click 'Save'.
    Preonus Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Contact Woodyale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Squarespace title and slug setup step eleven
  12. The step by step tutorial with more detail, if you need it, is at https://support.squarespace.com/hc/en-us/articles/206543687-Layout-Pages#toc-edit-layout-pages-

In Wordpress

  1. Go to Pages in the left hand menu of your admin panel
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step one
  2. Hover over 'Contact' page and click 'Quick Edit'. Here we will edit the title and the slug.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step two
  3. Change the title and the slug.
    Cabinets
    Contact Woodydales Favorite Cabinet Store
    contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet-store
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step three
  4. Then Click 'Update' to save the changes.
    Cabinets
    Contact Woodydales Favorite cabinet-store
    contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet-store
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step four
  5. Next, hover over 'Appearance' and click 'Menus'.
    Contact Woodydales Favorite Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step five
  6. Click on the arrow icon.
    Contact Woodydales Favorite Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step six
  7. Change navigation Label to 'Contact' and click 'save' button.
    Cabinets
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step seven

The slug and page titles should match or be a close match. A common mistake some webmasters make is to think they will put some keywords in their slug and some different keywords in their page title ... hoping to rank for both. This is actually counter productive. Search engines look to see if your slug confirms the page title and vice versa. If they contradict each other you don't enhance your SEO, you damage it.

So go through your other pages something like this:

  • Home Page:
    • Slug: You can't change this, it doesn't exist!
    • Title: Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
  • About page
    • Slug: /about-woodydale-favorite-cabinet-store/
    • Title: About Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
  • Cabinets
    • Slug: /cabinets-offered-Woodydale-cabinet-store/
    • Title: Cabinets Offered by Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store

WordPress quick edit will change inner page title automatically except home page. We need to add home page title using mesmerize edit. Follow these only for the home page.

  1. Click 'Pages'.
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step six
  2. Hover over 'Home' page and click 'Edit with Mesmerize'.
    About Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Acupuncture Treatments Offered by Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step two
  3. Hover over the text and click on it.
    CABINETS
    CONTACT
    ABOUT
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step six
  4. Replace the text with your own title and click 'Publish' button.
    CONTACT
    ABOUT
    CABINETS
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step six
  5. Click 'Close' icon to go back to the WordPress admin panel.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Woodydale's Favorite
    Bluehost wordpress optimizing title and slug step six

I've used 'favorite' as a common word here. It doesn't have to be. You could use alternatives like 'best', 'oldest', 'most modern', etc. etc. You're just adding something to make your page titles more attractive to web users. We'll see where this pays off in Google and Bing shortly.

If you have created specific pages about your Cabinets one might be:

  • Slug: /kitchen-and-bathroom-cabinets-woodydale/
  • Title: Kitchen and bathroom cabinets in Woodydale

Notice we don't use words in the slug like 'in' or 'by'. Any small words that don't actually mean anything (known as Stop Words) don't need to go into the slug.

You get the picture! We are repeating certain keywords (who you are, what you do, where you are) in key places on your website. We're also not using your business name. Why not? Because business names are (or should be) so unique that you will rank for them anyway so don't clutter up your titles and slugs with them

Now why is it so important to make descriptive and attractive page titles? Your titles will show up in the search results of Google and Bing so being more descriptive simply makes you look more attractive to internet searchers.

In the search results simulation below the blue text represents page titles:

https://preonuscabinetstore.com > contact-preonus-woodydales-favorite-cabinet store
Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
https://jacksplace.com > contact
Contact
I'm a Cabinet Store Owner that doesn't know my SEO from my ABC!
https://rener.com > contact-us
Contact Us
... a Cabinet Store Owner who hasn't set up their Search Engine Optimization correctly so Google is just grabbing something random off the page ...
Your page title gets used by Google and Bing in the search results most of the time so make sure you are utilizing it well.

You can also see something else at work in the examples above. Your website is taking up more space on the screen which is also going to make it a more attractive option to click on because it stands out. In SEO we describe this as 'taking up more real estate in the search results'.

Now truth be told Google and Bing don't always use your page title this way. They may use some different text if they think it is more relevant to the search being carried out but if your page Title and Slug are designed to be a close match for the search "Cabinet Store Woodydale" then this is what the search engines will use.

As such a well put together Title and Slug help you control how your site appears in search results.

OK ... But what about the black text descriptions below the titles in the search results? We'll sort these out next.

The meta description

Totally ignored by search engines and often ignored by Search Engine Optimizers who don't know what they are doing ... the meta description is really, really important.

Its the text search engines are most likely to use (but not guaranteed to use) when they show a page from your website in their search results so it can be your one chance to sell yourself and get a potential customer.

It should be a punchy, attractive 200 character summary of that page's content which makes people want to click through.

Now as it happens the first line of text on each of your pages should be a punchy, attractive 200 character summary of that page's content which will make people want to stay longer and read more so to start with go back through your pages and tighten this up.

For example on your 'about' page your opening text could be something like "At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm"

All very welcoming. Makes people using Google or Bing want to click through and makes people on your website want to read more. We've also got those all important words in there about what you do and where you are.

Now for each page add your opening line or lines as the meta description as well:

In Squarespace:

  1. Click 'Pages'.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace seo editing step one
  2. Click on the 'Contact' page and click Edit.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace seo editing step two
  3. On the top left, click ADD BLOCK.
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    ADD SECTION
    SquareSpace seo editing step three
  4. Click 'Text'.
    SquareSpace seo editing step four
  5. Increase the box size to put the text.
    SquareSpace seo editing step six
  6. Place the meta description here.
    SquareSpace seo editing step seven
  7. Click 'save' to keep all the changes you have made here.
    At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering Cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
    SquareSpace seo editing step seven
  8. Hover over the page and click the gear icon ().
    Cabinets
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    SquareSpace seo editing step seven
  9. Click SEO. Then scroll down little bit, add meta description to the SEO DESCRIPTION
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store - Prenous Cabinet Store
    https://prenouscabinetstore.com/contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet store
    SquareSpace seo editing step eight
  10. Click Save to keep the changes you have made.
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store - Prenous Cabinet Store
    https://prenouscabinetstore.com/contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet store
    At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
    At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
    SquareSpace seo editing step nine
Wordpress plugins
Wordpress off the shelf is pretty basic, you'll need to add a number of plugins to get it fully functional

In Wordpress we are going to use a plugin - Yoast

  1. Make sure the Yoast SEO plugin is installed and activated (It should be installed automatically while installing bluehost). Afterwards, click on pages in the Wordpress admin panel.
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step one
  2. Hover on the page and click 'EDIT'.
    About Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Acupuncture Treatments Offered by Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step two
  3. Scroll down to the 'Yoast' box below your content and Find 'Meta Description'. Place your own meta description here.
    contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet-store
    At the Preonus Prenous Cabinet Store we've been offering Cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step three
  4. Scroll up. Click the 'Update' button (at the top right hand side of the page) to save your work.
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step four
  5. Click Pages.
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step five
  6. Hover over the page and Click 'Edit with Mesmerize'.
    About Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Acupuncture Treatments Offered by Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step six
  7. We will delete 'Contact us' text from the page. To do it, hover over the text and click on the 'delete' icon.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    CABINETS
    ABOUT
    CONTACT
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step seven
  8. Next, hover over the below text, click on it and then replace it with your own meta description text.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    CABINETS
    ABOUT
    CONTACT
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step eight
  9. After that click on the 'Publish' to keep the changes.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    CABINETS
    At the Preonus Prenous Cabinet Store we've been offering Cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
    ABOUT
    CONTACT
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    Bluehost wordpress Yoast Seo editing step nine

So why do we match up your opening text with your meta description? Google and Bing are far more likely to use this text in their search results if they see it is also used prominently on the page and so that gives you a little more control over how they present you. Otherwise it can be a bit random!

So once again here is the end result of how your 'about' page could look Bing or Google's search results:

https://preonuscabinetstore.com > contact-preonus-woodydales-favorite-cabinet store
Contact Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
At the Preonus Cabinet Store we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm
https://jacksplace.com > contact
Contact
I'm a cabinet store owner that doesn't know my SEO from my ABC!
https://rener.com > contact-us
Contact Us
... a cabinet store owner who hasn't set up their Search Engine Optimization correctly so Google is just grabbing something random off the page ...
Your meta description gets used by Google and Bing in the search results most of the time so make sure it attracts visitors.

Now we have 4 signals all confirming each other:

  • The slug
  • The visual page title
  • The first paragraph below the visual title
  • The meta description

In reality you have actually got 5 signals. In the code there is also something known as the 'Page Title'. You can see it in the top tab of your browser window and it can be modified so it is different from the visual title. In fact WordPress does modify it in most cases by adding your business name to the end. This is no issue when it comes to SEO.

https://prenouscabinetstore.com/contact-woodydales-favorite-cabinet-store

PREONUS CABINET STORE
Contact Woodydale's Fav
Bluehost wordpress browser title

Again some website owners try to rank for lots of different words by making all of these signals very different but contradicting signals confuse search engines and make them reluctant to rank such websites so a definite SEO no-no.

The meta description for your cabinets page and home page.

I just want to spend a little time talking about the meta description for your cabinets page. Earlier we covered the types of searches people are likely to carry out when looking for businesses like yours.

  1. What you are and where you are - e.g. cabinet store woodydale / cabinet store owner woodydale
  2. What you do and where you are - e.g. Kitchen and bathroom cabinets woodydale

It's this second type of search we need to focus on through the meta description on your cabinets and home page. Here's an example for a Cabinet Store whose key offers are Kitchen and bathroom cabinets and cabinet design and installations.

  • Cabinets Page - "Kitchen and bathroom cabinets and cabinet design and installations in Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 or make a purchase online today".
  • Home Page - "At the Preonus Cabinet Store in Woodydale we offer Kitchen and bathroom cabinets and cabinet design and installations as well as many other Cabinets".

Now remember you are not going to be able to get all your offers in there - you need to keep this to around 180 characters long - but do get in the key ones that you want to rank for. Remember, again, these texts should also be the first visible texts on each page below the title.

Here's an example of what the top of your home page should now look like.

I can't over emphasize how important the meta descriptions (and, by definition, the opening paragraphs, on these two pages are. We will be using the home page text over and over again later in this course as we start to spread your web presence across the internet ... more on that later! Just for now be sure to get these descriptions looking really good. Keep asking yourself:

  • Is this an accurate summary of the page?
  • If I saw this in Google would I be tempted to click through?
  • Does this include some keywords I want to rank for? i.e. Who I am, where I am and what I do.

Finish off this section by creating a meta description for your 'about' page as per the steps above (which include adding it as the first paragraph of visible text on the page itself) as well as any other pages such as the individual ones you might have made about each cabinets you offer.

You now have your 5 signals on each page:

  • The slug
  • The visual page title
  • The first paragraph below the visual title
  • The hidden page title (seen in the browser tab)
  • The meta description

And they are all complimenting each other. Each one confirms the other and so strengthens the other.

But while our 4 signals are crucial they need support so that's what we will build next.

Make your entities salient

Time for a little more SEO jargon!

You're trying to persuade search engines that you have a Cabinet Store website but to achieve that you need to understand how Google and Bing think. They use a process known as Entity Salience Analysis when deciding what a website is about. Don't worry, its not that technical!

With Entity Salience Analysis search engines look at multiple signals coming from each of your pages and from your website as a whole. The more of these signals that there are and the closer they match each other, or build on each other, the more confident Google and Bing become that you are who you say you are - a Cabinet Store.

Entities fall into two parts

  • Key entities - the obvious words or phrases you want to rank for when people search them (sometimes also referred to as 'keywords') - e.g. 'cabinet store woodydale', 'cabinet store owner woodydale', etc, etc.
  • Supporting entities - words or phrases or even entire sentences a person would expect to hear if they were discussing a cabinet store - e.g. kitchen and bathroom cabinets, cabinet design and installations, cabinet repairs, cabinet restorations, etc, etc.

Now it is possible to get search engines to understand the key entity without ever mentioning it! For example if I said "The best places to visit are the Empire State Building, The Chrysler Building, The Rockefeller Center and the Flatiron Building" search engines would be able to figure out the key entities are "Buildings" in "New York" even though I never mentioned either of those words. Yes modern search engines really are that smart

However if I said I am going to talk about "Popular Buildings in New York" and then don't mention any such building names (ie the supporting entities) search engines will conclude I am trying to fool them and won't rank my content.

But our aim here is not to test how clever search engines are - our aim is to be absolutely crystal clear and not leave Google and Bing in any doubt about who you are and what you do by including both key entities and supporting entities. That's what I'll cover next.

Proving that your website really is about that 'thing' means using words that search engines 'expect' to find on a Cabinet Store website.

We can see an example of proving a 'thing' with some 'expected' signals by looking at the meta description we just created for your contact page which looked like this:

"At the Preonus we've been offering cabinets since 2012 and are proud to serve Woodydale. Call us toll free on 800-800-8000 Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm"

The thing, the 'key entity', is 'contacting a Cabinet Store' and to make it more salient we have included:

  • The text 'call us'
  • A telephone number
  • Opening times

These are the kind of things Google and Bing expect to find on a contact page so they should be there and in a promenant position. They reinforce the 'key entity' or to be technical they make the 'key entity' more salient - they give it greater weight.

And because you have also included the 'key entity' in the page title and slug that has made it even more salient.

Now let's consider your business as a whole.

If I walked into your store because I saw the words "Cabinet Store" above your door it is obvious what my expectations would be. But if you started talking to me about great casinos I should visit I might start to realize that you aren't a cabinet store owner after all.

Google and Bing will do the same thing if they wander about your website and can't find the wording they're expecting based on the information you have given them in your URL, Page Title and Meta Description.

So they are expecting to see cabinet store related words like:

  • Kitchen and bathroom cabinets
  • cabinet design and installations
  • cabinet repairs
  • cabinet restorations

They'll also expect you might mention the kinds of people associated with your Cabinet Stores:

  • designers
  • cabinet sales associates
  • cabinet installers
  • repair technicians
  • cabinet restorers

Furthermore search engines are smart enough to understand what a cabinet store is and that it means you serve the retail market sector so they would also expect words like:

  • Service
  • Quality
  • Guarantee
  • Warranty
  • Customer

Take some time now to have a search around the web. Visit the Wikipedia page for your profession. Look at what related words Cabinet Store websites that rank well in Google use on their sites. Then knit those words into your content. They count more if they are within written text - lists of words and phrases are weak - so work them in naturally or write extra content so you can use them.

If you struggle because repetition sometimes makes your text look awkward use a thesaurus like www.thesaurus.com to find alternatives such as "cleanliness" instead of "hygiene". Google and Bing understand these synonyms.

All of these make the words you actually want to rank for more 'salient', or stronger, in the eyes of search engines. They will see you as a trustworthy website that is what you say it is.

Checking for readability

OK, we're now at the point where you have images and text on your pages and the text is rich in words that are associated with Cabinet Stores.

Obviously its a good idea to read through what you have written for typos and places where it makes no sense but you should also be looking at the overall presentation using something we call 'chunking'. Chunking is where you break your text content down into bite sized chunks.

By that I mean, firstly, short paragraphs. Look at how all the major news sites (BBC / CNN / etc.) present their texts ... very short paragraphs. Sometimes they will have a paragraph that is only one sentence long. I'm doing the same in this text.

Secondly look to see where you could use bold. Not to often but here and there where you want a key point within your text to stand out. I did this two paragraphs back to explain what 'chunking' is.

Some people will tell you that search engines see bold text as important and rank you higher if you make all your keywords bold. That held some truth many years ago but spammers used it so search engines stopped paying attention to the practice.

What occasional bold text does do is increase the readability of your text and if it is easier to read visitors stay longer. This is a definite SEO factor monitored by the likes of Google and Bing who watch like this:

  • A user carried out a search
  • From the search results they click through to your website
  • If, in large numbers, they click the back button within a matter of seconds and return to the search results this is a sign that your website should rank lower for that search.
  • If, in large numbers, they click the back button after a couple of minutes and return to the search results this is a sign that your website partially met their needs and so its ranking might be OK.
  • If they rarely click the back button this is a sign that your website met their needs and that you should potentially rank higher.

This is the Bounce Rate I covered earlier alongside 'Dwell Time'. The bounce rate is the percentage of people who hit the back button after clicking through to your website from the search results. The Dwell Time is how long they stayed on your site before hitting the back button.

It's important to understand that search engines consider your bounce rate and dwell time as two of many factors and it is relative to your competitors. There are websites out there that have bounce rates of 99% with very short dwell times and are the best in their industry - think weather or dictionary websites.

Conversely you could have a bounce rate of 10% and dwell time of 2 minutes and that would be considered awful compared to your competitors.

I'll cover later how you can measure both of these signals on your website when we look a Google Analytics.

Unfortunately there is no way of knowing the bounce rates and dwell times of your competitors so all you can do is put in place common sense practices that will keep people on your website as long as possible.

Visitors are more likely to stay on your website (and so more likely to become customers) if your content is easy to digest so split long paragraphs into smaller ones and embolden important sentences.

An image to break up text
Using images to break up long texts actually makes the content more readable

Breaking text up with images is also a good technique. My general rule of thumb is an image at least every two screen heights on a laptop. An image every now and then just so the text doesn't start to feel overwhelming. You may want to have far more images than that and that's not a problem when it comes to SEO as long as they are added correctly which is where we'll go now.

JSON-LD

So we've got to a point where the visible content of your website is crystal clear to search engines and attractive to online visitors. Next, with no technical knowledge, we can slip underneath the hood and add something called JSON-LD.

JSON-LD is a block of code that is placed in your website code. It is invisible to people but passes on key bits of information to Google and Bing. This includes the type of business you are, your location (both as an address and with longitude and latitude - great for GPSs), opening hours, telephone number and a whole bunch of other stuff.

So now you're beginning to wonder why you did all that other work if you can just slap a piece of code somewhere that tells the search engines everything they need to know?

Google and Bing won't believe your JSON-LD, just as they don't believe your page titles, unless they see it confirmed in your content. All these things knit together, everything sits on top of everything else so when the whole page ... and even the whole website ... is bought together search engines say "OK, this website is definitely for a Cabinet Store in Woodydale". JSON LD is one more feather in your cap.

You can see some great general examples of JSON-LD code blocks at https://developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/structured-data/local-business but as you see it can be pretty overwhelming all the detail. I'll show you an easier way ....

Getting JSON-LD onto your website?

The great people over at Steal Our JSON-LD (https://jsonld.com/json-ld-generator/ have made a generator for you to do this!

JSON-LD generator from jsonld.com
The JSON-LD Generator from jsonld.com includes ready made templates for many types of local businesses

Now take your block of code and ....

In Squarespace:

  1. Click Settings > Advanced > Code Injection. Place your JSON-LD code here.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Woodayle's
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step
  2. Click 'Save' to keep the changes.
    Prenous
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step

For Wordpress

  1. Here, we will use WPCode – Insert Headers and Footers + Custom Code Snippets – WordPress Code Manager plugin to add JSON-LD code. Hover over Plugins and click 'Add new'.
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step one
  2. In the search bar, search WPCode – Insert Headers and Footers + Custom Code Snippets – WordPress Code Manager .
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step two
  3. Click 'Install' button.
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step three
  4. After that, click 'Activate' button.
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step four
  5. Hover over 'Code Snippets' and click 'Header & Footer'.
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step five
  6. Place JSON-LD code bellow the title 'Header'.
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step six
  7. Click 'Save Changes' button to keep the changes.
    Bluehost wordpress setup JSON-LD step seven

Once you are all done test your pages with the Schema.org validator (https://validator.schema.org/). Schema.org is a joing venture involving many search engines including Google and Bing.

And that's it. Your website is Search Engine Optimized!

What about blogging, posting on social media, creating content, marketing that content, blogger outreach, building backlinks, etc.?

No, none of that. These are SEO techniques which are not relevant to local businesses like Cabinet Stores but people tend to spurt them out when they don't really understand Search Engine Optimization and how it should apply to a Cabinet Store which serves a particular geographical area.

Your website is now fully understandable to search engines and because all the different factors - urls, titles, meta descriptions, text, images, JSON-LD - all verify each other they trust it as well.

But that doesn't mean you are going to bounce straight to the top of Google or Bing. You might but it could well take a few weeks. Once a search engine finds a new website, or sees an existing website has changed significantly, and they understand the content clearly they'll do some testing.

This might involve ranking you in their top 10 for certain searches 'now and then' and measuring how well people react to you compared to those who are currently ranking. For searches carried out dozens of times a day they are able to gather this information and make a decision within a matter of days. For more occasional search phrases it takes longer.

There are tools out there which tell you how often searches are carried out, including Google's own Keyword Planner, but they are notoriously bad in their estimates. I'll show you a more accurate way later when we cover the Google Search Console.

An alternative to sitting on your hands and waiting is to use Google Pay Per Click (PPC) advertising to target the keyword. It costs but Google will tell you how well your website is being received by people (versus competitors) while at the same time giving Google the data it needs to make ranking decisions far faster. It works like this:

  • You create an advertisement which shows when someone searches "cabinet store woodydale"
  • Google monitors how often people click on the advert and how long they stay on your website.
  • Google gives you a 'Quality Score' for the advert. One element of this is 'Landing Page Experience'.
  • If your 'Landing Page Experience' score is low Google isn't going to be tempted to rank you higher in the organic search results so look again at the design of your site and try to figure out what might be turning people off.
  • If your 'Landing Page Experience' score is high this is a good sign that Google might smile on your organic rankings soon!

PPC advertising is another book in itself (of which there are many out there) but if you want to get your head around the basics I highly recommend the Google's Skillshop courses at https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/7539883?hl=en.

I will just bring up two costly mistakes some people make when using Google PPC:

  • Make sure the keywords you set up are done in a way that your advert only shows when all the keywords are searched - e.g. only show my advert when people search a phrase which includes "cabinet store" and "woodydale". You don't want to be paying for clicks made by people searching "cabinet store" hundreds, or even thousands, of miles away!
  • Make sure to set up Geographic targeting so your ads only show to people located in within a reasonable distance of your business. There may be, for example, a town called 'Woodydale' in the US, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia. You don't want to be paying for clicks for all of them!

OK, I've mentioned things from site reliability to Bounce Rate to Dwell Time to finding how often certain phrases are searched. In the next step I'll walk you through the set of tools you need to get the feedback you need.

STEP THREE: Registering and Monitoring your Cabinet Store Website

The tools you need

To make sure your website is working technically 24/7/365 and to see how effective it is in the search engines you'll need the following tools:

  • A Pingdom monitor - so you can be sure your website is up and running 24/7/365.
  • Google Analytics - so you can see who is coming to your website, from where and what content is working well.
  • Google Search Console - so you can see where you really rank (what you see in Google itself is not always where your website really ranks, search engines personalize their results so if you spend a lot of time on your website they might rank your site higher when you search certain words).
  • Bing Webmaster Tools - Bing's version of Google Search Console. Don't ignore it. Generally Bing users are high quality and convert from visitor to customer better than Google!

I'm not an affiliate of any of these, I get no kick back if you sign up or spend with them. I recommend them simply because I use them personally.

Pingdom

Remember way back at the beginning when I wrote about 'what a website needs to be' one of the key factors I mentioned was reliability. Google and Bing don't want to show websites high up in their rankings if, when someone clicks through, they get a message that the website is down (or even worse there is just a blank screen). They know it reflects badly on them as a search engine and they, just like you, don't want to lose their users to the competition.

Pingdom is a 3rd party online service which sends a 'ping' to your website every few minutes. It basically checks if it can open a page on your website. If it can't it makes a note of this which you can review in the Pingdom admin center.

You can also set Pingdom up to notify you if your website is down for a prolonged period of time - say more than 5 minutes.

Of the tools I've listed this is the only one that's not free but it's the best on the market, very effective and a small price to pay for peace of mind that site reliability is not holding back your rankings.

Pingdom pricing is at https://www.pingdom.com/pricing/ - you want the 'Synthetic Monitoring' service.

Start by signing up for their free trial:

  1. Open https://www.pingdom.com/pricing/ then untick the 'Real user monitoring'. After that click START FREE TRAIL button.
    Pingdom sing up step one
  2. First Fill up the details then click 'START FREE TRAIL'.
    Pingdom sing up step two
  3. You might be redirected to provide more details or redirected to the login page. If you are redirected to the more details page, ignore this step. If not - Pingdom will send you an email to verify your email address. Open your Gmail and the email you have received from Pingdom. Click the 'Verify Your Email' button. You will then be redirected to the provide more details page.
    Pingdom sing up step three
  4. Fill up the details and Enter your site URL. This will automatically setup uptime and page speed monitoring for this URL.
    Pingdom sing up step four
  5. Then, you will be redirect to the pingdom dashboard. Click on the 'Uptime' to check the uptime score.
    Pingdom sing up step five

Once you get it up and running you will find that, even with the best hosts, there will be occasional down time when your site does not work so don't panic at the first sign of an SMS or email that says your site is not working.

Pingdom will tell you what percentage of the time your site is up and running - this should be at least 99% of the time every month. If you are getting lower figures contact BlueHost (if you are on WordPress) or SquareSpace for assistance to resolve the issue

Google Analytics

This free service from Google will tell you how many people visit your site - by hour, by day, by week or by month. It will tell you how they found the site and what they do when they arrive there.

You can even create specific monitors such as counting the number of people who get as far as your contact page.

In the longer term it will create a history of data that can be used to identify where improvements on your site can be made.

To get this working we need to get a small snippet of code from Google and add it to our website.

To add Google analytics on your site, you need a google account. If you have one, skip the sign up procedure of google account.
  1. Go to the https://accounts.google.com/signin and click 'Create account'.
    Google account creation step one
  2. Click 'Myself'.
    Google account creation step two
  3. Fill up the details and Click 'Next' button.
    Google account creation step three
  4. Add more details here and click 'Next' button.
    Google account creation step four
  5. Scroll down. Click on the 'I agree' button.
    Google account creation step fiv
  6. That's it. Google account is now created.
    Google account creation step six

Once you have opened your Google account Next step is to signup at 'Google Analytics

  1. First open https://analytics.google.com/analytics/web/ and Click 'Start measuring'.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step one
  2. Provide account name.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step two
  3. Click 'Next'.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step three
  4. Enter 'Property name'. After that click 'Next'.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step four
  5. Select the industry category , business size, and next one select as you need or ignore it.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step five
  6. Tik the 'Terms of service' and after that click 'I Accept'.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step six
  7. Click 'Save' button.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step seven
  8. In the next screen, enter your Site URL and enter 'Stream name'.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step eight
  9. Click 'Create Stream'.
    prenouscabinetstore.com/
    Cabinet Store
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step nine
  10. Click 'Global site tag'.
    https://prenouscabinetstore.com/
    Cabinet Store
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step ten
  11. Copy all the code.
    Google Analytics sign up and set up step eleven

Once you have set up Google Analytics you'll be given a block of code which needs to be added to your website.

For WordPress (if you are not using Divi or Theme X)
w WordPress Step by Step
  1. In the WordPress admin panel, hover over 'Code Snippets' and after that click 'Header & Footer'.
    Bluehost Google Analytics set up step one
  2. Paste your block of code at the 'Header' section.
    Bluehost Google Analytics set up step two
  3. In the top right, click 'Save Changes'.
    Bluehost Google Analytics set up step three
For SquareSpace
w SquareSpace Step by Step
  1. In the home page menu, Go to the Settings > Advanced > Code Injection. After that Paste your block of code into the header section.
    Preonus Cabinet Sto
  2. Click Save to keep the changes.
    Preonus Cabinet Sto

It is in analytics that you will also find two key measures which I mentioned earlier:

  • Bounce Rate - given as a percentage for each page of your site.
  • Dwell Time - stated as 'Avg session Duration'

To get this detail for visitors who come to your website via search engines:

  1. Click Reports > Acquisition > Traffic acquisition.
    Google Analytics 4 step one
  2. When you have clicked traffic acquisition, you will be able to find a search bar here. Type 'Organic Search' and press enter.
    Google Analytics 4 step two
  3. Then, the results of "Organic Search" will be visible
    Google Analytics 4 step three

You'll now see in the table data for 'All Users' and 'Organic Traffic', traffic coming from the organic search results of all major search engines.

Google Search Console

Google Search Console tells you what words and phrases your website ranks for (in Google) and where you rank, on average. You can use this to see if your rankings are improving over time and later to identify possible opportunities.

The set up is pretty simple once you have Google Analytics installed.

  1. First open https://search.google.com/search-console/welcome Enter your 'site URL' and click 'continue'.
    Google Search console step one
  2. When setting up you need to verify you own the website. It will be automatically verified if you have the Google Analytics account. Now, Click 'GO TO PROPERTY'.
    Google Search console step two
  3. Then, You will be redirected to the 'Overview' page. Click 'START'.
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"

Now that you are all set up we just need to make sure Google knows about your website (in SEO jargon we need to know if it is "indexed").

In Google search "site:yourdomainname.com" and see if your pages are listed.

If not then in Google Search Console:

  1. Look for the box at the top of the screen with the text that starts "Inspect any URL in ..."
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
  2. Copy and paste the home page of your Cabinet Store website here (your home page URL will be something like "https://mydomainname.com/". Next, Hit enter and let Google gurgle away.
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
  3. If the next screen says your page is not on Google click 'REQUEST INDEXING'
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
  4. Click 'Got it'. This will normally be enough for Google to find all your pages via your website menu but you can add each page individually if you like.
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
  5. Be patient, it could take a few days before you are added.
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
    https://prenouscabinetstore/

Once you start to see pretty graphs do a little more refining. By default Google Search Console is set up to report activity on standard web searches (as opposed to searches for images, videos or news'. You'll find this at the leftside menu.

  1. Click 'Performance' and You'll see at the top of the page in a blue box that says 'Search type: Web'. If it says anything else click the pencil icon and change it to 'Web'.
    https://prenouscab...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
  2. The 'Date' box to the right of this is self explanatory.
    https://prenouscabin...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"
  3. To the right of the 'Date' box you will see a box marked '+ New'. Click on this, then 'Country ...' and select your country.
    https://prenouscabin...
    Inspect any url in "https://prenouscabinetstore/"

Now if you scroll down the page you will also see a table marked 'QUERIES' which are the search terms people are using that result in your site being shown in the search results. If you are considering using Google PPC advertising this is a great place to come and look for ideas on what searches to advertise for because, unlike most keyword tools which are hopelessly inaccurate, this is real data.

The 'impressions' column tells you how often the search is carried out and can also give you inspiration on what content you might add like an extra page that focuses on a particular part of your business because you can see people are specifically searching for this.

There is a whole lot more to the Google Search Console but there is little point repeating it when Google provide an excellent tutorial at https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6258314?ref_topic=9268559.

Google Search Console Impressions

Bing Webmaster Tools

Finally we need to install Bing's version of Google Search Console.

First sign up for an account at https://www.bing.com/toolbox/webmaster. When registering you can ignore the 'Add a sitemap' box and choose to verify using the meta tag.

  1. Click Get started button.
    Bing Webmaster singup step one
  2. Choose sign in with 'Google' account.
    Bing Webmaster singup step two
  3. Next, select the Google account you want to start with.
    Bing Webmaster singup step three
  4. Add your site URL to the 'Add your site manually' box.
    Bing Webmaster singup step four
  5. Click 'Add'.
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
    Bing Webmaster singup step five
  6. Click 'HTML meta tag'.
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
    Bing Webmaster singup step six
  7. Now, click 'copy' and Keep the browser open. We need to come back here to complete the vefication process.
    Bing Webmaster singup step seven

Bing will give you a block of code that looks something like this: <meta name="msvalidate.01" content="rdvtg65mjw40tj2p3">

For WordPress:
w WordPress Step by Step
  1. In WordPress admin hover over Code Snippets from the left hand menu and click 'Header & Footer'.
    Bing Webmaster verification step one
  2. In the 'Header' section, paste your 'HTML meta tag' which was copied from Bing.
    Bing Webmaster verification step two
  3. In the top right, click Save Changes
    Bing Webmaster verification step three
  4. Now go back to Bing Webmaster Tools to complete the verification process. Click 'Verify'.
    Bing Webmaster verification step four
  5. That's it. Click 'Done'.
    Your domain https://prenouscabinetstore/ is successfully added to Bing Webmaster Tools.
    Bing Webmaster verification step five
For SquareSpace
w SquareSpace Step by Step
  1. In the home menu, Click Settings > Advanced > Code Injection. Place your 'HTML teta tag' code here which was copied from Bing.
    Preonus Cabinet Sto
    Bing Webmaster verification step one
  2. Click 'Save'.
    Preonus Cabinet Sto
    Bing Webmaster verification step two
  3. Go back to the Bing Webmaster Tools to complete the verification process. Click 'verify'.
    Bing Webmaster verification step three
  4. Click Done. Verification is completed.
    Your domain https://prenouscabinetstore/ is successfully added to Bing Webmaster Tools.
    Bing Webmaster verification step five

In Bing do the same search "site:yourdomainname.com" and see if your pages are listed.

If not then in Bing Webmaster Tools:

  1. Click 'URL Inspection'
    prenouscabinet...
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
  2. Enter your URL and click 'Inspect' button.
    prenouscabinet...
  3. If the next screen says 'URL cannot appear on Bing', click the 'REQUEST INDEXING' button.
    prenouscabinet...
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
  4. After that click the 'Submit' button.
    prenouscabinet...
    https://prenouscabinetstore/
STEP FOUR: The Wider Web for Cabinet Stores

Create a Google Business Profile and a Bing Places listing ... properly!

I've lost count of the businesses owners I've met who approach Google Business Profiles and Bing Places in a half hearted "OK, I'll just get my business on there because I have to". But these profiles are key not only to your website SEO efforts but to the bottom line of your business.

A huge amount of Google searches for a Cabinet Store like yours will lead to Google showing a map at the top of the search results ... and underneath it 3 Cabinet Stores. Bing does the same. If you can be one of these top 3 you are basically at the top of Google's search results!

What's more an increasing number of people are going straight to Google maps to find local businesses so even if your website is ranking high in a normal Google search you are missing a big opportunity if you are not at the top of the results on this platform.

This might start you thinking ... why do I need to bother with a website? Well chances are once people find you on Google Maps they'll click through to your website to find out more about you and if your website doesn't look the part you'll lose potential Customers like a leaky bucket loses water.

And one final point - a strong profile gives Google and Bing more confidence in your website - that you are who you say you are and you do what you say you do. As such the profile listing and the website rub off against each other. "Two logs burn hotter than one" as they say.

So how do you get up those map rankings?

It isn't rocket science:

  • Positive reviews - Google wants to show its users places other users said they loved. We'll come to reviews and how to get them a little later.
  • Relevant reviews - Reviews that specifically mention one or more of the keywords you want to rank for.
  • Quality listings - Full descriptions, great photos, opening hours, a website link, contact details and a whole bunch more. Google just wants to give its users quality and it prefers to serve up lists with comprehensive information above those that have little in their entry.
  • Relevant content in the listings - as with reviews your listings should include some of your keywords you want to rank for and they should be prominant (e.g. at the start of your description)

You want to be giving these profiles serious thought when you create them and we'll go through how to do that now.

Registering your business with Google

  1. Open https://www.google.com/business/ and Click Manage now button.
    Google my business step one
  2. Click 'Add your business to Google'.
    Google my business step two
  3. Fillup the 'Business name' and 'Business category'. After that, Click 'Next'.
    Google my business step three
  4. Select 'Yes' and click the 'Next' button.
    Google my business step four
  5. Fill up the fields and click 'Next'.
    Google my business step five
  6. Select 'None of these' and click the 'Next' button.
    Google my business step six
  7. Check from map if your business location is corrent and after that Click 'Next'.
    Google my business step seven
  8. Here, Select your as your preference and click 'Next' button.
    Google my business step eight
  9. Add 'Phone number' and 'Website URL'. After that click 'Next' button.
    Google my business step nine
  10. Provide 'Contact name'.
    Google my business step ten
  11. Click 'Continue'
    Cabinet Store
    Google my business step eleven
  12. You can add business hours at the moment or skip to the next step. Later, business hours can be added.
    Google my business step twelve
  13. Click 'Next'.
    Google my business step thirteen
  14. For the business description, Click 'Skip'. We will add this later.
    Google my business step fourteen
  15. Click 'Skip'. We will add photos later.
    Google my business step eighteen
  16. Click 'Skip'.
    Google my business step nineteen
  17. Click 'Continue'
    Google my business step twenty
  18. Verification Postcard will be sent in 5 days. So need to wait these days to verify.
    Google my business step twenty-one
  19. After receiving postcard, Open https://business.google.com/locations and Click Enter Code.
    Cabinet Store
    Google my business step twenty-two
  20. Enter code and click 'Verify'.
    Cabinet Store
    Google my business step twenty-three

What should be on your Google Business Profile

Once you have registered your business with Google go to Google My Business ( https://business.google.com/locations ), select your business and then select 'Info' from the left hand menu. This is the area you want to make sure is as complete as possible.

Most of these are real basics but be absolutely sure they are right or there will be times that Google doesn't show you in its search results when it could:

  • The location or area you serve - get this exactly right, Google won't believe you are a Cabinet Store that covers the entire country so decide where, even down to a neighbourhood level if you like, you want to target customers.
  • Your full address.
  • Your opening hours - make these accurate, if you are open when you say you are closed Google might not show you in map search results but if you are closed and claim you are open you'll annoy potential clients!<.li>
  • Your telephone number
  • Your website - make sure to include the starting 'https://' part which makes it clear you operate a secure website.
  • Products - These can be products or services, add your key ones here (not all of them or people will get lost in the detail) alongside good quality photos.
  • Highlights - These are characteristics of your business (e.g. "Women Led"). You might not see this option but if you do you can confirm or remove some of the ones Google created by guess work but not the ones it created based on user feedback.
  • A description of your business - you have 750 words here, I'll walk you through this in a minute.
  • Updates - this section is for you to announce new things. Use it to announce your key offers - Kitchen and bathroom cabinets, cabinet design and installations, cabinet repairs, cabinet restorations, etc.
  • Photos - if you sorted out your website as we discussed earlier you'll have a great bunch of photos to add here ... put them all on to your listing.

Make sure that key data points - your business name, address and contact telephone number - match what you put into your JSON-LD code earlier. This will help Google make the connection between you and your website and feel confident it is a genuine match. Remember the Google Business Profile is yet another signal to Google that you are who you say you are and that you are a genuine business ... another reason to consider ranking your website higher ...

Your business profile should leave people in no doubt that you are a Cabinet Store but also make clear what you offer in more detail such as Kitchen and bathroom cabinets, cabinet design and installations, cabinet repairs, cabinet restorations, etc.

Now let's just go back to that 750 word description. The first 180 characters or so should:

  • Match the opening text on your website home page
  • This means it also matches the meta description for your home page

The next 500 words or so should be an expansion of this. What other Cabinets you offer, what you aim to achieve (happy Customers, etc. As warm, inviting and attractive as the meta description but with a bit more depth.

Once you have created this literary masterpiece also add it as the first text on your home page below the opening paragraph (the one that matches the meta description. It doesn't need to go there immediately below the opening paragraph - there could be an image in between but it should be the first text someone sees after scrolling down past the opening paragraph.

For SquareSpace
  1. Replace the current text with your own meta description.
    Prenous Cabinet Store
    Cabinets
    SquareSpace homepage meta description step one
For WordPress
  1. Replace the existing text with your own description.
    CABINETS
    ABOUT
    CONTACT
    Woodydale's Favorite Cabinet Store
    PREONUS CABINET STORE
    SquareSpace homepage meta description step two

Why? Because search engines like consistency. If you are going to use a piece of text on your Google Profile then it should be good enough for your website, your Bing Places, any social media you use, if you list on a bookings portal it should be there ... and so on. They all build on each other and as you have made the text keyword rich, because you mentioned your products/services, Google and Bing will find these same keywords wherever they find your business around the web.

The more search engines relate those keywords to your business, the more likely you are to rank for them be it in Google's normal search, map searches, search results from other portals, etc., etc.

Get online reviews for your Cabinet Store

There are endless places where people leave reviews but I'd focus first on the one that really matters, Google Reviews, because that's the one Google's going to be looking at most when considering both your website rankings in general and your rankings on their maps.

They also won't hound you with sales calls as Yelp! and some others tend to do because they have no 'Premium' option for you to trade up to.

Getting reviews is essential to Local SEO

But how to get those 5 star feedbacks?

Before we go there let's cover the technical aspect. Making it as easy as possible for your customers to leave a review.

To do this you are going to need:

  • A simple link you can add to emails or SMSs so customers can simply click or tap and leave their opinion
  • A QR code graphic that customers can scan with their smartphones and acts the same as the link above

Let's start with the link and then I'll walk you through QR codes and how to use them.

To get the link

  1. Open https://business.google.com/locations. See if your business is verified. If yes, click on the Google Business Profile Manager icon.
    Cabinet Store
    Woodydale, New York
    Google my business reviews step one
  2. Scroll down, Look for the Share review form button and click on it.
    Cabinet Store
    Woodydale, New York
    Google my business reviews step two
  3. Copy the link and save it somewhere for later.
    Cabinet Store
    Woodydale, New York
    Google my business reviews step three

Right - we now have a link which is ideal for adding to your website as well as sending in emails or SMSs

Now for physical things (like leaflets, posters, receipts) we'll need a QR code. The QR code for my SEO agency website looks like this:

link2light.com QR code graphics

To get the QR code graphics

  1. Open https://www.qr-code-generator.com/
    QR code generator step one
  2. Paste your Google my Business review link here.
    QR code generator step two
  3. Click download button and wait a few seconds. Don't do anthing like refesh or exit the webpage for few seconds
    QR code generator step three
  4. Navigate download folder in your computer, a QR code graphics will be automatically downloaded here.
    QR code generator step four

You use your link or QR code every time you make any type of contact with your customers such as:

  • on your receipts or invoices (with a QR code link)
  • as a link on your website
  • on social media (if you use social media)
  • in a follow up SMS with a link
  • in a posted newsletter (with a QR code link)
  • on leaftlets or posters (with QR code links) around your store

And don't be afraid to just be honest. Explain you are trying to build up your Google Reviews and why you are doing it. customers that are happy with your cabinets will be ready to help.

For SMS sending I see good results for our clients when we use https://www.clicksend.com. Again I have no affiliation to this service and get no kickback if you use it. It's just one of the better SMS sending services we use here at link2light.

ClickSend allows you to send SMSs from your computer making it easier to copy and paste in messages and the link to your Google reviews.

Personally I recommend the SMS route. Here at link2light we see a much higher response rate from SMSs - perhaps because people are less distracted from other emails bobbing around in their inbox or many accidentally get filtered as spam.

Now there is one final piece to the jigsaw here. Reviews work better, much better, in getting you ranked if the review text contains the keywords people are searching:

  • A 5 star review that says "I love this Cabinet Store. The service is always outstanding." will help you rank for searches like "Cabinet Store woodydale"
  • A 5 star review that says "I needed Kitchen and bathroom cabinets. Amy was amazing and I could not be happier with the results" will help you rank highly for "Kitchen and bathroom cabinets woodydale" or "Kitchen and bathroom cabinets near me".

So when you can you want to be asking Customers to be specific in their reviews. Two or three such reviews can catipult you to the top of the map search results because Google and Bing see that not only do you claim to do Kitchen and bathroom cabinets, other people say you do as well and that you are very good at it!

OK - let's put all of that together and go through how to get a ClickSend account and send out daily SMSs in a way that will get you very positive and very relevant reviews ... very quickly!

Here is the initial setup for ClickSend -

  1. On the desktop, right-click on the mouse and click 'New'. After that click Text Document.
    ClickSend review request step one
  2. Open the file by double-clicking it.
    ClickSend review request step two
  3. Write the 'Clients Information' such as phone number with full international dialling code and first_name But include a ',' between them.
    ClickSend review request step three
  4. Click 'File' and Save As.
    ClickSend review request step four
  5. Rename the file name and save it as 'csv' file. e.g - (mondays-clients.csv). After that click 'Save'.
    ClickSend review request step five
  6. Open ClickSend dashboard and click 'contacts'.
    ClickSend review request step six
  7. Click on the 'add' icon.
    ClickSend review request step seven
  8. We need to enter a name for the list. write 'Yesterdays Clients'.
    ClickSend review request step eight
  9. After that, click 'Add'.
    ClickSend review request step nine
  10. In the left side menu, Click Automation > Automations.
    ClickSend review request step ten
  11. Click 'Add Action'
    ClickSend review request step eleven
  12. Include the action name. Action name will be needed while we create Automation.
    ClickSend review request step twelve
  13. In the body, write your message which will be sent to the clients. After that, click 'Save'.
    (First Name), thanks for choosing Preonus Cabinet Store yesterday. We'd love it if you would share your experience in a Google Review. If you could mention the treatment and who you dealt with that would really help others. To leave your review please tap the following link: https://g.page/r/cabinetstore/review
    ClickSend review request step thirteen
  14. Scroll down, click 'Add Automation'.
    ClickSend review request step fourteen
  15. Here, add a automation name
    ClickSend review request step fifteen
  16. Click 'Select Contact List'. and choose the list 'Yesterdays Clients'.
    ClickSend review request step sixteen
  17. Make sure the action is the one that you have created in the 'Add Action' section.
    ClickSend review request step seventeen
  18. Here, on the 'Time After Adding' part, give it '5' mins and click 'Now'. These settings will send messages instantly after adding any new contacts. you can also add a schedule to send messages.
    ClickSend review request step eighteen
  19. Click 'Save' button.
    ClickSend review request step nineteen
  20. Back to the 'Contacts' to add some listing.
    ClickSend review request step twenty
  21. Click at the 'Click here to start adding your contacts'.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-one
  22. Click at the 'Drop file here or click to upload'.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-two
  23. On the desktop, select the 'mondays-clients.csv' file you created earlier. After that, click 'Open'.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-three
  24. Click IMPORT
    ClickSend review request step twenty-four
  25. We need to match columns with the ClickSend. For example, we've included 'phone', and here in ClickSend, we select 'phone' with that to match with them. Need to do it for others columns as well. After that, click 'Confirm'.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-five
  26. Wait here for a few seconds until it says 'Import Complete'. Click the 'OK' button.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-six
  27. After importing the client's details, we need to wait for about 30 minutes to make sure all message has been sent.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-seven
  28. After you have sent the message, it is time to remove the listing. To do it, tik on the Box next to the 'DATE UPDATED' text and then click on the 'Delete' button.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-eight
  29. Click 'DELETE'.
    ClickSend review request step twenty-nine

Once you have completed the initial steps, from then on the daily work is -

  1. On the desktop, right-click on the mouse and click 'New'. After that click Text Document.
    ClickSend daily work step one
  2. Open the file by double-clicking it.
    ClickSend daily work step two
  3. Write the 'Clients Information' such as phone number with full international dialling code and first_name But include a ',' between them.
    ClickSend daily work step three
  4. Click 'File' and 'Save As'.
    ClickSend daily work step four
  5. Rename the file name and save it as 'csv' file. e.g - (mondays-clients.csv). After that click 'Save'.
    ClickSend daily work step five
  6. Open ClickSend dashboard and click 'contacts'.
    ClickSend daily work step six
  7. Click on the 'Add' button.
    ClickSend daily work step seven
  8. Make sure you are on the 'Import Contacts' tab. click 'Drop file here or click to upload'.
    ClickSend daily work step eight
  9. Select the file that you created earlier.
    ClickSend daily work step nine
  10. Click 'IMPORT'.
    ClickSend daily work step ten
  11. Click 'CONFIRM' BUTTON.
    ClickSend daily work step eleven
  12. Wait here for a few seconds until it says 'Import Complete'. Click the 'OK' button.
    ClickSend daily work step twelve
  13. After importing the clients details, we need to wait for about 30 minutes to make sure all message has been sent.
    ClickSend daily work step thirteen
  14. After sending the message, we need to delete the listing. To do it, Tik the 'Box' beside the 'DATE UPDATED' text, and on the right, click the 'Delete' button. After that, click the 'Delete button' again in the popup window.
    ClickSend daily work step fourteen

Get your Cabinet Store website one click away from Google's top ten.

OK - we've seen how you can get to the top of Google's search results by ranking highly in Google Maps. But there may be some searches where a map does not show and we just see that familiar listing of 10 websites. For some of these you're just never going to rank on page 1 of Google ... you might not even rank in the first 10 pages. But what if you could have links to your website on the website pages which are in Google's top ten?

Its usually not as difficult as you might think. So often Google's top 10 results are:

  • Directories such as Yellow Pages
  • Blogger or Press Media - you know the sort of thing: "8 Best Cabinet Stores in Woodydale (2023)" type posts or articles.
Yellow Pages screenshot
Directories like Yellow Pages often dominate Google's Top 10.

This is because if someone is searching "Cabinet Stores woodydale" search engines rightly see this as a request for lists (note the plural in the search - "Cabinet Stores"

So if they can they will use websites they have found that contain lists rather than 10 different Cabinet Store websites.

But even if we consider a search like "Kitchen and bathroom cabinets near me" search engines still know that websites with lists offer a better experience than individual websites of Cabinet Stores .

So do the search yourself and identify where you can add yourself.

The first type (directories) are straightforward but once again fill out your entry with the same care and attention as you used with Google My Business and Bing Places. You're not going to get potential Customers clicking on poorly presented directory listings.

If you find some directories charge but it's only a nominal amount seriously consider paying up. They are, after all, in Google's top 10 for searches your potential Customers carry out.

The second type (bloggers and press media) are straightforward as well, just reach out and ask! If you have a rock solid block of positive reviews its going to be hard for a blogger or journalist to refuse. They are trying to build authority themselves and if its obvious your business belongs in their "8 Best Cabinet Stores in Woodydale (2023)" piece they'll want it there for their own reputation's sake.

And if you want to sound a little swish as we get towards the end ... this activity is known as "Barnacle SEO"!

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram ... where should you be and how on earth can you manage them all? I read in one SEO book that "your customers are on social media so you should be to". Nonsense.

Social Media Graphic

In fact being on Social Media can do you more damage than good unless you are ready to go all in on each account that you open. Yes, your customers and potential customers probably are on places like Facebook and Instagram but they are there to see regular updates that are relevant to them.

So ask yourself - do I have relevant things to say on a regular basis?

The answer might be yes. You might have new products or services on a regular basis that you want to announce. Or periodic promotions. Perhaps something as simple as making people aware of upcoming national holiday opening times.

You don't need to even think of your own post. Just follow your favorite Journal or a leading figure in your field and share something they post. Its the added bonus of showing your current and demonstrating to future customers that you keep up to speed with developments in your industry.

If so Social Media can be very useful to you and even to people who are not following you there. If I am thinking that I may want to visit your store then looking you up on Facebook to check there are no announcements from you that are affecting your opening hours is a useful thing and I don't need to be following you to do that.

Where Social Media can actually damage the way your business looks is if your profiles are incomplete, poor quality or deserted ... with 3 posts from 4 year ago! That undermines the professionalism you want to present. So when you, for example, set up a Facebook page do so in the same way as you added your business to directories.

  • Full and informative descriptions of your cabinet stores, your story and what you offer. Again, use the meta description from your website home page and, if there is room, further text from your home page. Search Engines like consistancy!
  • Lots of images (that you have because you prepared them for your website anyway).

  • All the attributes available - such as Opening Hours, Year Established, Contact Phone Number.

And make sure the profile is set up in a way that you are notified if someone sends you a message so you can reply promptly.

For a local business I would recommend:

  • Facebook - it's a popular 'go to' place for many people even if they aren't actively following you. In fact some people prefer to search for businesses on Facebook instead of Google.
  • Instagram - if you have regular images to post - say because you sell a line of products that you want to promote and sometimes place on promotion or you have cabinets that are unusual and photogenic.

And that's it! Remember every one of these profiles has to be managed with updates and responses to questions or comments so if you set up a dozen social media accounts it can very quickly become an activity that sucks hours from your working week and you have to ask yourself what return you are getting for that.

I have met some business owners wasting so much time on Social Media that they could be devoting to SEO activities. In summary treat Social Media with caution, start slowly with Facebook and if you get a good feel of it expand to other platforms in your own time.

Despite what some people say Social Media is not your route to a booming business. Great customer service is and if that is what you provide then your Customers will promote you themselves - not just in their feeds but also in groups they belong to and by good old traditional word of mouth.

What not to do with your Cabinet Store website

Don't blog (unless you enjoy it)

I've lost count of the number of "SEO experts" who say you have to blog. It just isn't true.

How can every cabinet store owner run a blog and have something interesting to say? And even if each one did how would that benefit their business? How is having an article about something cabinet store related that becomes incredibly popular in Europe going to help your Cabinet Store in Woodydale, US?

I've seen blogs where the cabinet store owner is so stuck on what to say they create posts about new receptionists and stuff. They literally become a slave to their blog which sucks time they could be using for something productive.

If you do have regular things to say ask yourself - "Are these announcements?" In which case they would be better posted on a Social Media profile like Facebook than making long and waffly attempts to turn them into Blog posts.

'

Blogs do have a role in SEO and that's why those who have lived in a text book but haven't done real life Search Engine Optimization for a local business successfully think its important. But I'm telling you for cabinet store owners it isn't and if its not something you enjoy doing you are highly unlikely to get any SEO benefit from it that also benefits your business.

If you do love writing about changes to your business or developments in your field then sure, start a blog. To test the water I always say to my clients that they should write 10 blog posts offline, each one at least 500 words long, over the next ten weeks. If, at the end of those 10 weeks they want to write another 10 posts then start a blog. If the whole thing was a real struggle don't start an online blog.

In fact, just like with badly run Social Media accounts, a poor quality blog is going to make you look unprofessional and act as a turn off for potential customers so you can end up doing your business more damage than good.

Don't do content marketing

This is the thing where people tell you that you must create lots of 'great content' and then go running around contacting bloggers and others asking them to link to it.

No ... just stop! Its the same blogging mistake pushed by people who have eaten one too many SEO theory books. Are you really going to produce some cabinet store related content that will rock the world? Maybe ... but probably not (no disrespect!).

And besides you are a cabinet store owner, not a writer. Yes, some people are great at both but don't worry if you aren't. The steps we have covered so far are more than enough for most cabinet store owners as long as they are done right.

Now if you really love writing about what you do then sure, put it to good use. Perhaps create a Knowledge Base that explains aspects of your business which potential customers would find interesting. Just remember most of the people who read it will be located too far away to actually become paying customers.

Don't get depressed and buy a short cut

Yes, what I've covered on this page is a lot of work when you sit down and think about it. Wouldn't it be easier just to pay a few hundred bucks for one of those "guaranteed ranking" schemes?

Well, they might rank you for a short while (long enough to get their bill paid) but by using Black Hat SEO (techniques that breach the terms and conditions of search engines) on your website you will have lined it up to get banned from Google and Bing not too far down the road.

Don't believe you need to submit a sitemap to Google and Bing

Sitemaps are special files that you can upload to Google and Bing which list all the pages on your website and inexperienced Search Engine Optimizers will jump around and tell you its a must do activity.

But if you have a standard Cabinet Store website its only going to have a few pages on it - the home page, a page or some pages about your various Cabinet Store, perhaps a page with testimonials on it and a page with contact details.

Tell Google about one of those pages (which you will have done when you registered with Google Search Console in Step Two) and it will find the rest immediately.

Sitemaps are for highly complex websites where the crawler robots from Google or Bing might get bogged down 'over there' when you need them to see the new content 'over here'.

Once again banging on about Sitemaps is the rhetoric of those who understand SEO theory but don't do it in real life for Cabinet Stores.

Don't waste time and money on keyword tools

If you pick up any "How to SEO" guide they usually start with "Choosing keywords". My generic How to SEO your Website Guide does! But its not aimed at local businesses like yours (and it says so!). Now OK, if you are a blogger and you want to start ranking for certain words you are going to have to do some research.

But you aren't! You are a cabinet store owner, you run a Cabinet Store at a certain location and you offer cabinets like Kitchen and bathroom cabinets, cabinet design and installations, cabinet repairs, cabinet restorations, etc.

Your might employ designers, cabinet sales associates, cabinet installers, repair technicians, cabinet restorers, etc.

So these are your keywords:

  • what your business is (a Cabinet Store)
  • What you are (a cabinet store owner)
  • What you do ( Kitchen and bathroom cabinets, cabinet design and installations, cabinet repairs, cabinet restorations )
  • Who you employ ( designers, cabinet sales associates, cabinet installers, repair technicians, cabinet restorers )
  • Your location

In the steps above we have already covered how to make sure Google and Bing understand those things so you are going to rank for potential customers in your area. You don't need to research if people actually search these and how many times a month they search them. In any population people want cabinets. You just need to make sure you are ranking in your geographical area.

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