In the market that’s constantly growing and becoming more competitive, small businesses need a way to compete against well-developed competitors, as well as a way to stand out from the rest of the competition. In such a crowded market, that may seem next to impossible to achieve.
Fortunately for SMBs, SEO (Search Engine Optimization) can provide the solution. SEO is an efficient and cost-effective marketing strategy designed to help companies improve their visibility, credibility and exposure in the online world.
Since SEO takes time to produce actionable results, not many companies are using it. This may as well be your competitive advantage. However, SEO requires effort, dedication and careful planning if you want it to work in your favor. With that in mind, here are a few of the most effective SEO tips for small businesses.
Extensive keyword research
Keywords are the core of SEO, even though some experts argue that they aren’t as relevant anymore. Keywords match your content with that of user intent on search results. What’s more, search engine crawlers check your content for keywords and other factors so that they can index your pages accordingly.
Therefore, whether you’re optimizing your website, preparing for mobile or voice search or simply want to audit your pages, keywords are, indeed, essential for the entire process. That’s why extensive keyword research is a must.
You must determine which keywords are best suited for your business, Moreover, you must see which keywords, short or long-tail, have less competition. The whole purpose of this is to bring your content, your website or your products and services closer to the online consumers and make everything more visible.
Content and links
As you may already know, content is considered king in the marketing world. Moreover, content and backlinks are the most important ranking factors, according to Google. Therefore, to boost your visibility, credibility and exposure, among other things, you must engage in both content marketing and quality link building.
However, these two activities can be demanding and time-consuming, especially for SMBs that lack the resources or the technical skills to fully utilize these strategies. Luckily, you can always consider leveraging the full power of white label SEO, especially if you’re promoting products or services.
The way it works is that you partner with a reliable agency that will focus on SEO while you take responsibility for sales and other important promotional elements. In any event, content and backlinks can help you stand out in a crowded market more efficiently than other marketing strategies available to you.
Focus on local SEO
Visibility on the local market is as important as visibility online in general. The majority of consumers will research local businesses and use the phrase “near me” when they do so. If you’re not optimizing for local SEO, you are certainly missing out on a lot of opportunities.
Therefore, to optimize for the local market effectively, you must provide business information such as an address, phone, email, open hours, etc. on relevant business listings in your local market. What’s more, you should do the same on Google My Business listing as well.
Other local optimization tactics include posting relevant content, obtaining positive user reviews, posting images and so on. Consider local SEO as a foundation for your future marketing efforts. If you’re well-known and reputable on your local market, it becomes easier to work up from there.
Optimize your website
Your website is also the core of your business. Any consumer that visits your website will judge your company based on their experience on your website. That’s why it’s essential to optimize your website well. Fortunately, SEO optimization has customers’ best interests in mind, especially since customer experience is a major ranking factor.
For example, website speed, mobile-friendliness, navigation, security, etc. are all individual ranking factors and they all contribute to the overall customer experience. Therefore, make sure you focus on optimizing your website for SEO as much as possible.
Aside from ranking well on search engines, you will also be able to improve customer engagement, conversion rates and their overall satisfaction. In other words, you’ll be able to meet, if not, exceed their expectations.
Leverage social media
Social media can be a great contribution to your SEO efforts. Even though social signals don’t have an impact on your rankings, they can still benefit your visibility, brand awareness and exposure.
For instance, your social media pages do, in fact, rank on search engines so everything is more or less correlated. Furthermore, using your content and relevant keywords on social media networks will get the attention of search engines, especially if you manage to ensure a lot of organic traffic from those sources.
Your reputation and presence on social media platforms will benefit your SEO efforts. The two do complement each other rather well, in fact. The key, however, is in finding the right strategy that will emphasize both your social media and your SEO efforts through joint tactics.