Spreading the word about your products and services is one of the most important (and challenging) parts of running a small business. You want to be seen! Just because you run a small business doesn’t mean you can’t have a bigger online presence. To new small business owners, implementing a strong or consistent digital marketing strategy can sound like a daunting task.
Small Business SEO Strategies
To those who are new to the world of search engine optimization (SEO), it could seem overwhelming. While it may be a bit difficult understanding where to start, here are a five SEO things you can begin to do today.
1. Keyword Research
Keywords are fundamental in building a strong SEO strategy. They’re the building blocks that aid in the development of websites, content, and brand messaging. With a strong, search-relevant list of keywords, a small business owner could, for instance, develop their content strategy around them, as well as improve their site’s ranking in the search engine results page (SERP).
Ask yourself: How do I want others to think of my business? With this in mind, come up with keywords that you may want to rank for or improve your rank for. It’s essential that small businesses develop a strong keyword strategy to set themselves up for success in other digital areas.
Tips for Success:
- Take on a consumer’s perspective to help you understand what you want people to search for when searching for your business.
- Think about ways you would present your brand to others.
- What stands out above your competition?
- What are the keywords used most frequently on your site?
Although, as industries evolve and change over time, your keywords should as well. It’s important to regularly update the search-relevant keywords that you are using to create content around.
2. Publish and update title tags and meta descriptions
A title tag is a short summary text that gives searchers, and prospective customers, an easier way to understand what your webpage is about. Someone looking for your business should be able to, at a glance, see it and understand the page’s content. That helps your business’s visibility, through showing up on a search engine results page (SERP) like Google. This increase in visibility could lead to increased engagement.
At 50-60 characters, your title tag should be as concise as possible, while maintaining relevance about the about the page’s content. While there is no character limit, 50-60 is optimal to show relevant information. Things only get better when you incorporate search-relevant keywords, it gives you a better chance to draw clicks.
A strong title tag can help you stand out above local competitors. The keywords in a title tag can boost your relevance in search. As your site continues to draw clicks, it’s relevance grows and your site becomes the go-to site for those keywords.
Meta descriptions are the sentence long blurbs that you see right under title tags. These complement the title tags by giving a bit of a more detailed description of what’s on the page. As with the title tag, the implementation of relevant keywords can make all the difference. However, unlike title tags, meta descriptions have more room to fit those keywords.
3. Competitive Research
A big part of keyword research involves analyzing the competitors that are in your industry. Seeing other businesses as benchmarks for what you would like to be searched for and ranked. Through understanding your current industry’s digital landscape, you get more insight with regards to things like trends and understanding what people may want from businesses that are in the same industry.
Using tools like SEMRush, you can analyze the closest competitors in keywords, site rankings, and backlinks. While not all businesses within an industry offer the same products or services, analyzing different aspects of similar businesses and seeing the areas they are doing well in presents new opportunities.
Think about, what you consider to be, your businesses main competition. Analyze and understand their use of keywords, whether through content, title tags or meta descriptions. By diving deep in competitive research, you can get develop a platform necessary to build a strong SEO strategy. Competitive research provides insight which could lead to better content and increased search relevance.
4. Optimize images with ALT text
When thinking of an SEO strategy, any small additions or adjustments on your site can help – not only in adjustments to copy but images as well. This is where alt text comes in. Alternative text or “Alt text” can be overlooked when it comes to small businesses’ marketing strategy because its original intent was to describe an image to the visually impaired using the internet. However, it turns out, this strategy helps the robots (like Google) understand images, too!
Through describing the image as clearly as possible, while at the same time, including brand or search relevant keywords, you can drive an improvement to image SEO. Alt text helps you become visible to search engines, through crawling your page and finding the image that’s most relevant to the search terms. Try to be detailed in your description, while at the same time, being brief.
5. Consistently publish search-relevant content
With all of this information about search-relevant keywords at your disposal, you can improve your site’s content strategy or begin to develop it. Whether it’s blogs or social media, use the data that’s at your disposal to constantly optimize your content, to improve its search relevance.
Not only should there be keywords, but implementing them in a creative way to help create compelling content, that searchers want to engage with. Tailor them to topics based on what people are searching for in your industry, or what you would like to rank for. Content is one of the reasons that it’s good to consistently update your keyword research. If there are industry trends or concerns, you want searchers to know that your site’s content is as timely as possible.
Developing an SEO strategy can seem overwhelming. While there are only five items on this list, it’s really just the beginning! And to a small business owner, SEO is just one of many aspects of the company that requires attention. That’s where we come in. Marketing Refresh stays up-to-date on all of the latest marketing trends and we’re happy to take one of the many tasks off of your plate! Contact us today about SEO consulting services.