Your small business website simply won’t bring you business without Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Without investing in SEO, prospects won’t find you, stay with you, or click through to buy.
Basically, SEO refers to the process of improving the position that your website appears in as the result of a browser search. As it says in The Guardian, “As a general rule of thumb, sites that appear higher up in the results will get more traffic to their pages, and so potentially more business. Your goal is to get to page one and ideally to position one.”
Small business SEO can pursue this goal by following some of these tips:
- Forget what you’ve heard. Loading a website with content copy full of keywords no longer does the trick. Opt, instead, for key phrases, groups of two or three words directly related to your purpose. And, when you settle on key phrases, use them consistently across all your business’s venues. For example, using the same phrases on your site, your Facebook page, and Pinterest will link them all together in the browser’s “mind.”
- Contact the browser. You must tell the respective browsers that you are open for business. Each browser has a sign-up page where you enter basic info like the business name, address, phone, and URL. This info puts you on their maps, so to speak.
- Design a clean page. Browsers do not search for color, pictures, music, or logos. So, your web designers should shoot for simplicity. Simplicity can still be elegant and powerful, but it should invite and engage more than dazzle and impress.
- Identify images: While browsers do not search for pictures, they will respond to image titles, so name the images or give them titles as you save them. For example, change a 1234.jpg to a car-in-the-rain.jpg.
- Select content copy. The landing page for a website needs brief but pointed language, words that direct more than explain. Content on additional pages should give tightly- worded explanations. Do not clutter pages with product specs or manuals if they can be left to a link, and do not use content that would be better placed in a blog.
- Use header tags. Header tags attract browsers, so they should be phrased briefly and appear as titles and subtitles throughout the content. For example, if a key phrase appears in content on every page as well as in headers, you multiply your chances for contact.
- Manage the URL. You can write the URL for each page of your site. Even if words like a, the, in, for, and such appear in your page title, you can replace them with dashes in any part following the domain name.
- Share your genius. Your name, business name, and enriched key phrase such as ”Albert T Van Huff Atty” belongs to you. So, spread it around by contributing to other sites, forums, professional, online communities, and social networks where your name, business name, and enriched key phrase will backlink to your site.
- Optimize your social media. You can pull people to your site through your social media outlets. But, you must first enter as much relevant information on your social pages as possible. Those pages must share the business name and contact info from your site and include a hyperlink to your site and other media. You want them to become feeders.
Get help. As SEO has evolved, it has moved beyond the do-it-yourself stage where you can waste time and money. It’s not enough to have a web designer or web manager. You need the services of a leading SEO provider firm like www.youthnoise.com/seo-boston-ma.
Finally, any business owner needs to learn as much as practical about SEO. And, you need to respect that Google has been the master of this and, for all practical purpose, rules the future of search optimization.
Michael F. Carroll
Title: Freelance writer
Mike Carroll is a freelance contributor to Towering SEO and OutreachMama who helps businesses find their audience online through research, content copy, and white papers. He frequently writes about management, marketing, and sales with customized outreach for digital marketing channels and outreach plans depending on the industry and competition.