SEO (search engine optimization) is the most important channel of marketing for small businesses. You should invest in it now. Why is SEO so important? These SEO statistics will speak for themselves:
- 93% of online experiences start with search engines like Google or Bing
- Search is the number one driver of traffic to content websites, surpassing social media by over 300%
- 70% to 80% of search users don’t pay attention to paid search advertising, and instead click on organic results
- 30% of clicks on organic search results in Google lead to the top three results
- 72% of people who did a local search found a store within five miles
These stats show that search engines are used frequently by people to make decisions about buying or selling businesses. It’s important for your business to be on the first page of Google, or at least the first three organic results.
How can you rank your small business in search results? Many small business owners spend a lot of money on expensive SEO agencies and consultants, but they don’t see results. It can be difficult to compete with big-budget companies for the top three spots. There is still hope for the small guys!
Here are some quick strategies your business can use in order to get into the SEO sandbox.
1. What is SEO?
If you are new to online marketing, it is possible that you don’t understand what SEO means. It’s simply the process of making your website appear in search engine result pages. Google holds more than 70% of global search engine traffic. We’ll only be talking about Google when we teach you how to do SEO well.
Google uses over 200 signals to determine which webpage should be displayed when a user Googles. Google scans every page on the internet and saves the data. Google displays a list of authoritative and relevant pages that answer a search query when a user enters something in the Google search box.
2: Optimize your Site
Now that you have a good understanding of the keywords customers use to search for your business, it is time to optimize your site. SEO website optimization covers six key areas: Title tags
This is the text that appears in search results as the description for your page. It is also displayed in the tab of your website. Your focus keywords should be used in your title tags. Title tags have a lot of weight.
Here’s an example: The title of OptinMonster when you search for “Lead Generation Software”
This is the text formatting used to create headlines on your website with the H1-H6 format. Google’s most important H1 and H2 keywords are H1 and H2. Make sure you have a clear title that includes your keywords in an H1 tag.
Google is smart enough to notice keywords in your page copy even if they aren’t used in every sentence. Keep your customer in mind. Does your copy flow smoothly for your potential customers, while strategically using keywords on your pages? Bingo.
OptinMonster, for example, targets keywords such as “lead generation” and “customer acquisition” on their home page copy. Notice how the copy flows smoothly even though keywords are included.
Website URLs offer a great way to highlight keywords. Make sure that words are separated with hyphens and written in lowercase. Use clear keywords.
Google image search is another important area of search engine optimization. Name every picture on your website with relevant keywords. You should also include an image title and “alt text” tags.
If your image fails to load, the “alt text” tag will show the user the text. The “title” tag may give a brief description of the image. In some browsers, you can hover over an image to see the title.
These tags are important to Google as they provide context for your images when you search.
The two lines of text below the clickable link on search engine results are the meta description. Google will not allow you to fill in the meta description information.
If your site was built this way, each of these sections can be modified by your web developer or within a CMS platform like WordPress.
3. Create Content that Ranks
SEO, small business marketing, and content go hand in hand like bacon and eggs. What is the reason? We know one thing about Google’s algorithm: it places a lot of emphasis on new, fresh content. Here are some ways content can be used to win in SEO:
Establish and maintain a professional blog: This is the best way to create new content with short- and long-tail keywords. You will rank higher for keywords and increase traffic to your website by creating more content. By sharing blog posts regularly, I have seen businesses increase their traffic by over 1,000% in just 18 months.
Create landing pages: It is possible to create at least five to ten landing pages for your business. These pages can be placed within your navigation. These pages could be used to describe a service or answer questions. You should think beyond the Contact and About pages. How can you use your keywords to create rich, multimedia-rich pages that are both thorough and informative?
Testimonials and Case Studies: Gathering testimonials from clients and writing testimonials are great ways to include keywords on your website. This is a great way to show your customer service and help clients understand why you are the best choice.
Your business will benefit from keyword research, optimizing your website for SEO, and creating consistent, new content. You can easily tell if your efforts are paying off by benchmarking the keywords and organic traffic to your website before you start the above strategies. Then, check in 3 to 6 months to see how much traffic your SEO efforts have brought about.