When you’re a running a small to mid-size business it can be a challenge to keep up with continual changes to the digital marketing and search landscape. But, if you want to remain competitive online or recover from prior penalizations, you’ve got to find a way to prioritize this aspect of your small business’ marketing mix.
Whether you’re looking to finally get moving with SEO on your own or partnering with a trusted digital agency, we’re glad to hear you’re making SEO a priority! Outside establishing a respectable website that looks and functions according to recent best practices, there are many things you can do help move the needle on your SEO campaign.
Here are five different SEO strategies that can’t be ignored by any small business looking for online growth.
1. Create Valuable Website Content to Increase Search Traffic
While the prospect of rewriting your entire website can seem overwhelming, there are simpler ways to create high-quality content in support of your SEO campaign. By updating your existing web content or blogs with targeted keywords you can help improve your rankings for those terms. Just be sure to keep it natural!
Additionally, when you maintain a blog and post regularly you can create opportunities to use targeted keywords. This new and valued content can then help increase your online visibility for specific topics and related terms while also:
- Giving customers and prospects a reason to return to your website
- Showcasing your industry expertise
- Answering common questions presented to your sales or customer service teams
- Creating compelling reasons for site visitors to get in touch with you
- Prompting readers to share your content via email or through other social channels
- Triggering search engine crawlers to revisit your content and assess your “fit” with related search queries
2. Enhance Site Authority by Taking Advantage of Known Google Ranking Factors
When Google announces rankings factors publicly, it’s important to take note! While such factors often require an investment of time or money to make the suggested website adjustment, from a small business SEO perspective it’s foolish to ignore such straightforward opportunities.
Whenever you can align your business’ website with Google’s SEO best practices you can reap the rewards of improved rankings, especially when compared with competitors that have not followed suit. For example, responsively designed websites are promoted in search results while non-responsive websites are admonished for their failure to provide an optimized user experience.
3. Use Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools or Other Tracking Tools to Focus on SEO Campaign Goals
Using Google Analytics or other SEO reporting tools can help you measure your digital marketing campaign performance. And, whether you’re pulling your own reports or regularly meeting with your digital marketing team to assess achievements, it’s important to review progress in order to realize ongoing improvements.
A small business SEO campaign is essentially a living entity. While it can’t be controlled with total precision, regularly reviewing your efforts can create focus and contribute to advances over time. With regular check-ins you can look at SEO campaign inputs and compare with any changes in:
- Competitor metrics, or
- Other identified goals
Then, you can use these insights to identify both successes and failures, and then either exploit promising efforts, adjust your strategy or shift the focus to new opportunities.
4. Create a Google My Business Page for a Local SEO Boost
With a Google My Business page you can claim your Google business listing and control the information that is shared about your company across all kinds of Google results. Not only does management of this page help your business get found more easily in search results, but it allows you to:
- Remain competitive with other local businesses in location-based searches
- Share helpful business information with current and future customers such as descriptions of products/services, hours of operation and photos, among other details
- Enhance your visibility in search results by showing up in both the natural search results and map results
- Improve your online reputation
- Promote satisfied customer reviews and feedback
5. Step-Up Your Online Exposure with Local Citations & Directories
Inclusion in numerous online directories can help increase your local citations (instances of your business name, address, contact information and/or link to your website) and provide a welcome boost in search rankings. Especially important for small businesses, local citations signal to search engines that you are relevant to include in search results and actively in operation.
Neighborhood, industry, business association and “best of” directory lists are a good starting point as you look to expand your inclusion in various paid and free directories. As you continue with this endeavor, it’s important to make sure each listing is consistent. When directory listings present your business name, address, phone, website, hours or services in a consistent manner it helps search engines minimize confusion and more confidently return your website in relevant search results.
SEO is an Important Small Business Marketing Strategy
Building a successful small business SEO strategy is hard work, so it’s no wonder that many companies aren’t willing to go it alone. Much like hiring a money manager to help you grow your wealth, partnering with a digital marketing agency can grow your online presence, and give you time to focus on business drivers more closely tied to your area of expertise.
Whether you embark on the challenge solo or partner with an established digital marketing partner, remember to be patient and stay committed; only consistent SEO campaign efforts will yield results.