How to Build an Effective SEO Presence for Small Businesses
Any locally-based business or small business has a plethora of challenges to tackle when venturing into the digital realm. Among them, exposure and reach are the most common: after all, who is going to know to look for a specific unknown brand without being prompted? There is a variety of steps that small businesses must take to boost their visibility, but the biggest is arguably SEO.
Unlike other marketing methods that involve large budgets, search engine optimization focuses on boosting your organic and long-term visibility in relevant search results. In order to do this, however, you must first begin to build a solid foundation from which to work. Today, we’ll look at what small businesses can do specifically to achieve that goal.
Construct a Professional Website
It would seemingly go without saying, but the basis for any strong online performance revolves around a high-quality website. While many think about aesthetic design when hearing this, even more important is the structure and format of your website. Between ensuring a mobile responsive design and sensible link structure, search engines will be able to easily start pinging your website and indexing its content.
Perform Periodic Audits and Maintenance
Some aspects that are absolutely essential to SEO may not seem so– especially if you’re already growing within your niche(s). However, without periodic audits and general maintenance, your small business website can fall from Google’s graces. Between regular SEO audits and in-depth inspections for issues such as out-of-date content and broken links, perfecting your performance is never a done deal. Always be ready and willing to scour through your website, determining whether anything needs to be added, removed or changed.
Utilize Solid Meta Data and Descriptions
Regardless of the function or purpose of any given page, it absolutely should have a descriptive title and meta descriptions that help search engines classify it. Particularly important for newer small businesses just starting their online presences, ensuring that search engines are pinging your website and categorizing every single page will go a long way toward improving SEO.
With titles and meta descriptions, you not only help search engines find more context about your pages, but search engine users who stumble across your pages in search will be more likely to click if the information is enticing, entertaining or informative.
Create High-Quality Content
Arguably the cornerstone of any SEO strategy for small businesses, content creation is an absolute must. Even small and/or obscure businesses now have online blogs and platforms for the distribution of content. The reasons are multiple yet simple: to increase visibility in search engines, on social media, via email and beyond.
Most people aren’t inherently interested in purely branded marketing ploys: by creating high-quality content that is proofread and polished, you’ll have a great medium through which to promote yourself. Whether you’re focused on the organic nature of SEO or a paid approach via advertising, content simply creates possibilities.
Even upstart businesses can begin growing their digital presences thanks to SEO. By creating high-quality content, ensuring each page is properly titled and described, performing periodic maintenance and analysis, and building all of this on the foundation of a professional website, it’s only a matter of time before your efforts start paying dividends.