If you’re running a small business in 2023, you need a web presence. There’s just no way around it. Customers these days want to find their favorite brands online. They want to interact with their favorite brands on social media, read news and updates from them, and, of course, make purchases in just a few clicks.
But you can’t just count on customers to find your website or your social media profiles on their own. Sure, some of your most dedicated customers will, but what about those customers who don’t even know they’re customers yet? Search engine optimization (SEO) can generate buzz about your brand and bring new customers to your website and to your brick-and-mortar location. Here’s how it works.
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Start with the Right Analytics Tools
The first step towards improving your website’s SEO should always be to get the right tools to measure your site’s ranking and your progress in improving it. Tools like Google Search Console and Google Analytics will tell you where your site is ranking right now and give you data you can use to improve that ranking.
Google Analytics will tell you how much traffic your website is giving and give you demographic information about the users. You’ll see how many conversions you’re getting and how users interact with your website. Google Search Console will give you information about how well your site is performing in Google Search and how it appears in search engine results pages, or SERPs.
Find the Right Keywords for Your Offerings
Search keywords are the words people type into search engines in order to find what they’re looking for online. The right keywords for your content will be the ones that match what people looking for your products and services might search for to find them. If you’re a small business serving a local area, you should absolutely choose local keywords that incorporate the name of your city or neighborhood.
To generate keywords, first sit down and brainstorm some words and phrases that you think your customers would use to search for your business online. Then you can use those keywords with a keyword research tool to find keywords you can really use. The higher the search volume for a given keyword, the harder it’s going to be to rank within the first page of SERPs, which is where you want to be. It may be better to aim for lower-volume keywords instead.
Optimize Each Page of Your Site
Every page of your website needs to be optimized for search, and that means optimizing both the on-page content and the HTML code. You’ll need to use keywords in your H1 and H2 headings and subheadings, and in your content, but not too often. You’ll need to create an optimized meta description for your page. You’ll need to repair basic SEO problems like broken links, duplicate content, misapplied schema, slow site speed, and so on. There’s a lot that goes into on-page optimization, and you may want to enlist the help of an experienced Phoenix SEO agency instead of trying to do it all yourself.
Build Your Online Authority
Building authority online shows search engines that your content is valuable and should be ranked higher in SERPs. You can start by publishing authoritative content to your website blog and creating thought leadership pieces to guest post on other blogs in your industry. You also need to build backlinks, or links to your site from other sites. Reach out to other authorities in your industry and ask them to link to your site. Enroll your business in online directories. Write guest posts and engage with platforms like Quora. The more authority you can build, the more traffic you’ll get from search returns.
Encourage and Engage with Reviews
Everyone checks reviews before they buy anything online, and how business owners respond to reviews is almost as important as what it says in the reviews themselves. While you should always give your best service in order to keep ratings as high as possible, you also want to encourage customers to leave online reviews, because more reviews equals more online authority and more business. The way you respond to reviews, especially negative ones, will give potential customers more insight into these situations and will show your integrity as a businessperson.
SEO is vital to the success of any small business in the digital age. Make sure your site is getting the traffic it deserves. Optimize for search today.