Search engine optimisation (SEO) allows people to find your business without the associated costs of paid search or other advertising platforms.
Check out these effective SEO strategies for small business websites that will help your content rank at the top of Google.
Understand the Basics of Search Engine Optimisation
The internet is made of billions of web pages connected by links. Search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo! are the curators of the internet.
Through the use of very complex algorithms, these search engines analyse the quality and relevance of a website’s content. Each search engine has its own unique algorithm, and they display results differently.
They also use robots (aka bots, spiders or crawlers), to collect, sort and index information about every page, image and line of text on the world wide web.
Then they display the most relevant results based on your search queries.SEO is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search results.
Can You Do SEO Yourself?
Interesting question. Most business owners are experts at their business. But with marketing and SEO, most are amateurs.
SEO is not rocket science. There are some adjustments to your website that you can do yourself to improve the chances of your content being index and ranked on the first page of search engines.
If you want to focus on your business and outsource your SEO stuff to experts, then that’s great.
Outsourcing to SEO experts will leave you with sufficient time to focus on other important areas of your business.
However, if you want to do it yourself, here are a few effective strategies for SEO for small business websites that you can start using today.
1. Drive Qualified Users Through Long-tail Search.
Back in the day, SEO practitioners used to think targeting specific keywords and creating a 500-word article for it is all that Google requires.
To an extent, they were right. But like all things SEO, they sooner than later abused the strategy. Now search engines are a lot wiser.
SEO is no longer about keywords and spammy link building tactics. Successful SEO today depends on ethical on-page and off-page strategies and practices.
It is about targeting long-tail search queries. SEO today is about providing answers to your target audience’s queries.
Using a tool like this, you can perform a site audit to find relevant long-tail search queries that your target audience is using to find your website.
Then you can create fresh, quality content around those queries or optimise your existing content to rank better for those queries.
2. Optimise Your Metadata with Actionable Search Queries.
Metadata is a term used to describe information about a particular website or page that appears within the header section of that page.
The bots, spiders and crawlers mentioned earlier find this metadata information and use them to index and rank your web pages.
If your metadata is relevant and appeals to the theme of your website, it improves your rankings in the search results and helps you attract free organic traffic.
There are three types:
Title tag: This is the title of the page. But don’t confuse it with the headline of your page or article. However, both can be the same if you wish.
Meta Description: This is a sentence or paragraph that describes what your page is about. For best results craft a meta description that captivates your audience and motivates them to click through to your web page or article.
Meta Keywords: These days, meta keywords are not relevant. So don’t bother stuffing your page with these as they no longer contribute to your page’s ranking.
So long as you write a persuasive title tag and meta description, and mention your target search query naturally, you’ll boost your chances of dominating top organic results for your niche – especially, if your competition is weak in these areas.
3. Optimise and Properly Categorise Your Pages.
Besides optimising your web pages, make sure you have seamless navigation throughout your website and that your pages categorised properly.
A well optimised and categorised website helps to improve the user experience on your website. And Google says that user experience is an important ranking factor.
Ensuring accurate, relevant, and professional listings on the search engines is an important step towards attracting potential customers to your business. So please don’t take it lightly.
4. Identify Profitable Keywords from Your Competitors.
Are you reaching online shoppers with your content? You can’t successfully attract ardent consumers if you don’t know the search terms they’re typing into Google. Keyword research alone cannot show you the full picture.
So instead of making assumptions, the quickest way to learn what search terms your competitors are using to drive traffic to their website is to do a competitive analysis.
Competitive analysis will reveal what search terms your competitors are using to drive traffic to their site so you can target the same topics too.
5. Create a Google My Business Page to Attract Local Customers.
Have you claimed your Google My Business page yet? If you have a physical location or shop, you need to claim or create a Google My Business (GMB) listing on Google.
Your Google My Business listing is the digital representation of your physical business. Even if you operate an online business, it is still advisable to claim your GMB listing.
Then ensuring that your business information listed on Google My Business is 100% accurate is essential for your local search engine optimization.
6. Use the Skyscraper Technique to Create Irresistible Content.
If you want to make your content more impactful, then don’t ignore this powerful technique.
After several years of struggling to build a loyal audience that will devour and share his content, and seeing a meagre or no results at all, Brian Dean, founder of Backlinko.com, invented The Skyscraper Technique.
There are 3 steps to this technique:
Step 1: Find link-worthy content on your chosen topic.
Step 2: Make something even better than the best content you discovered in step 1.
Step 3: Reach out to the right people to link to the new content you created in step 2.
Using this technique, Brian claims to have increased his search traffic by 110% in 14 days. Many SEO practitioners have tried this technique, and it works. That’s one reason it is so popular.
7. Build Responsive Website for Mobile Search Users.
These days, more people use mobile phones and prefer to browse landing pages and research from their smartphones.
Therefore, your website needs to be mobile responsive to cater for these visitors. Mobile landing pages differ slightly from a desktop landing page.
Make sure you use a clear and specific call-to-action on your mobile landing page and remember that the best call to action wording for mobile landing pages is “Call us.”
Making this CTA a button or link allows people to call you while they are searching for local businesses.
8. Add Schema Markup
According to this article, schema markup sends search engines signals about page components, such as
- Business name
- Phone number
- Business hours
This can lead to rich snippets in SERPs. JSON-LD markup is preferred for SEO. You can see rich snippets in action within the SERP below.
Check out the schema for local businesses here: https://schema.org/LocalBusiness
9. Create Videos and Images for Competitive Keywords.
The same article mentioned above notes that websites need content, and content goes beyond words, though, and should include images and videos.
So if you are struggling to show up for competitive keywords, try a properly optimised video or an image. When creating content on your website, make sure your content is original.
Don’t plagiarise content. If Google detects plagiarism on your site, you will get penalised. Also, tag all the images on your website.
10. Engage Regularly via Social Media.
Social media pages play a notable role in local business’ visibility in search results. The more proactive your social media strategy, the higher likelihood your pages will attract followers and appear within search. To get your target audience actually to see your content on social media, you need to get strategic. It would help if you also used tools like this to help your content stand out in people’s crowded feeds.
Regularly implementing search engine optimisation (SEO) for a small business website will help to ensure that search engines index the site.
Also, ensure that you update your content regularly. Your online business will suffer if you do not update your website.
If search engines crawl your website and they don’t notice any changes, they will not index your site. Then your website rank will drop.
Once you have great content on your website, people will start linking to your site. This links will improve traffic to your website.
Link building is an essential part of your SEO strategy, so you need to take it seriously.
More traffic equates to more customers and more money. Search engine optimization is a long-term project, and you’ll see results in three to six months!
Google and Bing continually update their search algorithm. Make sure your website meets the standards as dictated by search engines.
Don’t neglect your website! It is the central location for your brand online. Perform basic SEO techniques on your site to keep it fresh and relevant. This will make it appealing for Google to crawl.
Nothing more annoying than visiting a website that has no update in several months!
Would you like more SEO tips? Or a free website audit to help you attract your ideal potential customer and achieve your SEO and internet marketing goals?
If you are finding it difficult implementing SEO strategy for a small business website, contact our SEO experts in Nigeria. We will help your content rank at the top of search engines as soon as possible.
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