Improve Your Search Engine Ranking on Google
Assuming your web designer knows his business and has built you a well-designed SEO friendly website - there is still plenty you can do to help you get on the first page of Google results.
Google My Business
You can register your business here and link it to your website. This means you should show up in that little map at the top of the first page of most Google searches for local businesses. (This needs to be done by you as you'll be sent a confirmation code by Google to set it up.)
For your business to stand out in the new 3 list display pack you need to make sure that your business has reviews. We're not just talking about 1 review, you need ensure that your business has more 5 star reviews than any of your competitors in and around the local area.
The more 5 star reviews you have the better. It reflects on the services that you are providing to your customers when potential clients look upon your business.
Become a member of the most popular social networking sites like Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter etc., and create a profile of your own. By doing this you can extend your network online, get connected, and promote your website to build a strong online reputation.
You're likely to be aware of Facebook! But there are a lot of good tutorials to teach you how to make the most of a business page. There's more to it than just setting up a page.
Linkedin is a great source for networking with like-minded people and sharing your website content or area of work/expertise.
LinkedIn Groups are where you should point yourself - they're packed with people sharing your kind of content.
Join as many as you can but bear in mind that you can only have a certain number of pending invites at one time and you're capped at 50 groups.
Twitter. An estimated 300 million users worldwide and 500 million tweets sent every day in over 35 languages, if you're prepared to make the effort, you can share your product or service with this many potential buyers.
This is a popular way of adding meaningful content about your business - the search engines like good rich content. Just ask yourself the question. Can I keep writing articles week after week? If you can't - best forget the idea. If you can, you can be richly rewarded. You can also promote your blog/website by posting comments in other business-related blogs which allow links in the comments section that are crawl-able by the search engines.
Get listed locally and nationally on free business directories - always using the same text that your web designer has crafted for your website. Submit your website to the quality directories like DMOZ and Yahoo.
As the words say - get in touch with like-minded businesses and organise reciprocal links. It'll help you both.
Social bookmarking is a good way to get reciprocal links and always remember to return favours - to keep the spirit of the sharing community healthy. popular sites include: stumbleupon.com, delicious.com, digg.com, reddit.com.
Short, well-made videos on websites now play a huge part in promoting your business. Played out from YouTube and Vimeo they collect brownie points in Google searches. If you're serious, do call in a professional - it will show to your website visitors that you too are a pro. HOWEVER, with a little care you can save your self money by shooting your own video and having it edited by someone like me! I'll give you a load of tips on how to shoot quality video material on your phone or ipad and prevent you from making simple mistakes!
Share your company's photos/products - you can do this with photo sharing websites like Flickr, Picasa, Instagram. Get your friends to look and make comments.
I expect you've got things to add to this list - it's only a start - but it's worth the effort.
You've gone to a lot of trouble to build your website - please don't waste it.
If you are looking for an inexpensive but beautiful looking website that will get on the first page of Google results for your business, here's a link that will get you started: Web design Southampton by Gethyn Jones.