By Jacqueline Stone
Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin were “essentially the web’s first librarians” marketing columnist Jacqueline Stone writes in her latest article, which covers SEO best practices.
What do you know about SEO, otherwise known as search engine optimization?

When I first got started in digital marketing I didn’t really understand the term, let alone what it meant. Now it’s at the cornerstone of almost every one of my marketing strategies.

2018 Jacqueline StoneRecovering jewelry designer Jacqueline Stone is CEO of her own marketing consulting and coaching business, Bubblegum and Duct Tape. She can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..The world wide web made its debut in 1990 and the world truly has never been the same.

While us general public “early adapters” were sending each other love notes on AOL Instant Messenger, two PhD students named Larry Page and Sergey Brin were working hard behind the scenes.

They knew the internet contained a wealth of knowledge but were curious how to harness that powerful energy. They invented Google, which made its grand debut in 1998. Instead of just “surfing” the web we now had the ability to actually search it!

They essentially were the web’s first librarians, giving birth to the way we index information found online. 

Think about how many times you use Google a day. From “how to boil an egg” to “where can I find the Famous Original Ray’s pizza in NYC,” we are constantly utilizing this tool without giving it much thought.

While you know quite well how to use search to enhance your personal life, it’s time to give some thought to how to use it for your business.

Search engine optimization is about making your webpage show up more quickly in search. The prized slot is on the first page but that seems impossible, right? Wrong.

Back in 2014, the internet librarians at Google realized that small fish like us were getting eaten alive by large conglomerates that had massive ad spend.

I don’t know about you, but when I was getting started I didn’t have thousands of dollars each month to spend on Google Adwords in the hopes of pushing my website to the top of the list.

These masterful indexers realized they weren’t truly doing their job if people couldn’t find local businesses. How to solve the problem? It’s all about location, location, location. 

In 2014, Google invented Google My Business. This nifty tool allows you to verify your business’ address with a postcard in the mail. If you don’t have this set up yet, I encourage you to do so today.

While Joe’s Local Jewelry Store might not have massive ad spend, it does have an important place in its small town’s growing economy. Google wanted to honor that and give opportunity to small businesses by giving them a platform.

Not only can a business verify its address, but it can also add a logo, images, team members, hours and, best of all, collect reviews from customers or clients who utilize its services. 

Before we move away from the discussion on location, it’s important to know that this should also shape how you create meta titles and meta descriptions for each URL on your website. You might not be able to grab attention with “best jewelry store in america” but you can succeed with “where is the best jewelry store in Small Town, USA.”

Making sure your titles and descriptions always include your specific location is key, even when your business model is remote and not limitless.

For example, I live on the web and service clients around the country. However, for my own SEO, I’m constantly plugging the fact that my business is a digital marketing agency in Boulder, Colorado. Why? Because there are millions of digital marketing firms across the globe, but only hundreds in my local market. It’s a small way to make a big impact.

Another way to increase awareness about the amazing job you are doing? The three key factors for any powerful SEO strategy are:

1) Quality content;

2) Unique offerings and;

3) Establishing expertise.

These three factors haven’t changed over the years, but perhaps how we approach them has shifted with the advent of social media. 

Let’s jump into them in a bit more detail.

When you are building a website you need to ensure you are creating quality content that appeals not only intellectually but aesthetically to your audience. When someone lands on your page, are you proud of what they see? That’s a great starting point.

You also need to continuously prove that what you have is unique, like no other in the market.

That might seem daunting, but think about it. No two humans on this planet are identical. You are truly a one-of-a-kind natural treasure. You possess skills and talents that belong to no one else out there; now it’s just time to demonstrate that credo in the digital space.

You can do that by writing blogs, sharing knowledge and engaging in thoughtful conversation on all of your social media channels. Videos are a great way to establish this, as long as they are titled and tagged correctly. (Note: using the word “unique” is not going to help here.)

What’s the last piece of the puzzle? Oh right, now it’s about authenticating that I truly am an expert (i.e., don’t just take my word for it). You can do that with testimonials as well as reviews, but press from established institutions is key.

I write for National Jeweler because it’s fun, but also because it’s useful. By sharing my insight on marketing basics with all of you I’m also establishing clout with all of our friendly search engines, as I’m now an “expert” in my field. 

SEO might seem overwhelming and perhaps a bit dull. But when you get back to basics and realize you are just doing your part to help the internet librarians do their job well, it can suddenly seem rewarding and fun.

Taking the time to update your titles and descriptions while emphasizing location makes a big impact.

Making sure to update your site with blog postings, products or new content creates new URLs and gives space for more key search terms. Quality content is key and it offers a platform to demonstrate how special and, yes, our favorite word, “unique” you truly are.

Lastly, don’t be shy to get out there and make friends. Trade press journalists are your best advocates and a great place to start.

If you aren’t sending high-resolution images of your work on white backgrounds to Jennifer Heebner, Becky Stone of Diamonds in the Library and Amanda Gizzi of National Jeweler/Jewelers of America on the regular, you are doing yourself a huge disservice. These incredible writers want to see what you are up to!

Don’t forget to tune into this column in the coming months as we delve into all the moving parts.

Quality content is a key piece of SEO and each platform (your business website as well as your social media channels) has a different type of strategy. It all comes down to effective communication and authenticity.

You already have an incredible product offering; now it’s just time to make small tweaks to ensure everyone on the web knows it too.

A recovering jewelry designer, Jacqueline Stone has a diverse background in finance, marketing, advertising, product development, fine jewelry manufacturing, design and sourcing. Now she serves as the CEO of her own marketing consulting and coaching business, Bubblegum and Duct Tape. Stone can be reached at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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Since 1906, National Jeweler has been the must-read news source for smart jewelry professionals--jewelry retailers, designers, buyers, manufacturers, and suppliers. From market analysis to emerging jewelry trends, we cover the important industry topics vital to the everyday success of jewelry professionals worldwide. National Jeweler delivers the most urgent jewelry news necessary for running your day-to-day jewelry business here, and via our daily e-newsletter, website and other specialty publications, such as "The State of the Majors." National Jeweler is published by Jewelers of America, the leading nonprofit jewelry association in the United States.