So, you’re trying to grow your business, but its visibility is either lacking or nonexistent. Here’s what you need to know: every business needs a website and an online presence. Why is that? Because everything has gone digital. Your business cannot solely rely on yard signs and business cards anymore. When people search for services related to your business, you want it to be on the first page of whatever search engine they’re using. Why? So they will choose you. This means that you have to play the SEO game. SEO is the process of optimizing or improving the quality and structure of site pages to rank high in search engines. If you want more visibility and higher rankings in 2021, read on to learn 8 SEO tips for small businesses.
1. Keyword Research
Search engine crawlers scour the web looking for content to store, organize and rank.
What are these crawlers looking for? High-quality content to rank as the most relevant results for a query.
That is why it’s important to do keyword research. Focus on keywords that are within your niche or industry.
However, finding keywords can be difficult because the top keywords in your niche may be competitive. The key is to make your chosen keyword more specific.
You can do this by using Google Keyword Planner. This tool will help you find gaps in your industry that you can use to your advantage.
You can also manually look for common keywords. Simply search your topic on Google’s search engine and scroll down to the bottom of the page results.
You’ll see the title “search results related to.” This box will have common search queries that your ideal customers are typing into the search bar.
After you’ve done the research, create a target keyword along with a few secondary keywords. Use these keywords throughout your website copy and content marketing materials.
2. Website Optimization
Every business should have a website. Why? Because websites build authority and trust among prospective clients.
Your website should be optimized in a way that offers a smooth user experience for prospective customers. This will help generate both interest and leads.
Research shows that 80% of users used their phones to search the internet in 2019. This means that your website must be easy to navigate for mobile users. Believe it or not, but a well-structured website affects ranking, traffic, and conversions.
Per Google’s advice, your website should have a logical link structure. This means each page of your website should link to other pages. For example, your homepage should link to other pages on your site (i.e, services, about, FAQ).
Your About Us page could link to your Services page. Or, your Contact Us page could link to your FAQ page. This boosts SEO.
3. Meta Titles and Descriptions
Every page of your website should have a meta title and description. But not just any description.
They should be unique and include keywords that tell ideal customers that you can offer them the highest value. Your meta title and descriptions should:
- Have a unique and enticing description of the specific website page.
- Include keywords, but do not overstuff,
- Keep descriptions between 50-300 characters (this converts to 25 - 150 words).
Always remember that compelling and enticing copy sells. So make these titles and descriptions good.
The goal of creating SEO-optimized websites and content is to help crawlers properly read and index your site pages. You want these crawlers to promote your content. This is why it has to be a high-quality and high-functioning site.
While the copy on your site might be clear, concise, compelling, and SEO optimized, there are still technical issues that you may be missing. Here are a few tools you can use to ensure the technical side of your SEO efforts are covered:
- Get rid of pages that are not performing. Keeping pages that are not performing well on your website negatively affects rankings.
- Track broken and old links. Crawlers don’t like it when you send your readers to broken or outdated links. This will hurt your SEO efforts. If you struggle to keep your site updated, you can hire website managers to do this work for you.
- Optimize your web images. Use images that relate to your business. Add captions and alt-text to provide relevant descriptions.
These tips will minimize the chance of crawlers downgrading your SEO efforts.
5. Audit Your Copy
Is your website clear? Is it concise?
It is important that when a potential customer clicks on your website, they understand exactly who you are, what you do and the value you can bring to them. Your copy should answer all of their questions. If not, potential customers will bounce off your site within a few seconds of visiting.
In short, here are 7 things to keep in mind relating to your business’s website copy:
- Include at least 100-200 words of copy on each page of your website.
- Avoid long paragraphs.
- Write in simple and concise sentences.
- Check for proper grammar, spelling, and punctuation.
- Use target keywords sporadically throughout each page.
- Use headers (H1 - H6) appropriately.
- Speak more about the pain points of your customers instead of your business.
Your copy should be clear, concise, compelling and SEO optimized. Not only will high-quality copy rank your website higher in Google’s search engine, but it will increase the average time a user spends on your site.
If this task sounds overwhelming, consider hiring a freelance copywriter. You can find great freelancers on certain websites or through your social platforms.
6. Content Marketing
It’s important that you have a steady content marketing strategy for your business. Content marketing helps inform your audience of anything related to your business. Content marketing materials include blogs, landing pages, social media, and more.
Let’s start with blogs. This form of media is considered one of the top 3 forms of content marketing and should be a part of your SEO strategy. Blogs help build authority and trust in your niche.
They show your audience that you’re an expert in your industry. Moreover, it shows your audience that you’re here to help. On top of this, blogging consistently helps rank your site in Google’s search engine.
Landing pages are single web pages that pop up after a user clicks on a highly ranked search engine result.
An effective content strategy would entail creating a landing page around a target keyword and linking it back to a related blog post. This strategy leads customers to your website, promises a smooth user experience, and positively affects your site’s ranking in SERPs.
7. Local SEO
Local SEO is an essential part of a good SEO strategy. The purpose of local SEO is to pull in your local client base by focusing your digital marketing efforts on your immediate surroundings.
One of the first things you’ll want to do is set up a Google My Business account. Claim your business address if it’s a local business with an offline client base. This will put your business on the map in your area.
In addition, your blog posts should be about local topics. Be sure to include links for local newspapers. Another beneficial tip is to create a Yelp account for your business for local customers to leave reviews.
8. Internal Linking and Backlinking
Interlinking is a smart way to boost SEO for your website’s pages and blogs. Interlinking is simply linking to another one of your articles. This will help keep users on your business’s site for longer.
Backlinking is when you have the opportunity to link another website to yours. For example, you can submit a guest post on another site that is related to your niche and insert a link to your site in the article.
It will benefit your website more if you get backlinks from high-authority websites because it positions your site as more trustworthy and reputable.
Achieve Success with These SEO Tips for Small Businesses
Your ability to effectively boost your business’ SEO means more leads, community building, and conversions. Without an online presence and a good SEO strategy, your business simply cannot reach the heights of success that you desire.
This information may seem like a lot. For small business owners who are overwhelmed trying to run their business, it might help to outsource these services to SEO experts and copywriters.
The foundation of marketing relies on bringing value to your target audience. You can do this by adding these SEO tips for small businesses to your marketing tool kit.
If you’re looking for more SEO knowledge and expertise, check out our blog.