Small Business Owner’s SEO Handbook

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Small Business Owner's SEO Handbook

In this age and time, where websites number in millions, there’s almost always only one search engine that most people turn to in times of need: Google. Except for in places like China, where Google is banned, 92.96% of global search traffic comes from Google if you include all Google properties (Google search, Google Images, Google Maps).

Bing—the Chinese equivalent of Google—is a second but nowhere near close and stands at 7.27%. Baidu—also Chinese—amounts to 6.55%; Yahoo, now history, comes to 5.6%.

In other words, 1,168 million people worldwide use Google, 293 million people use Bing (China has a population of 1,419,511,539, to put that in perspective), and 292 million use Yahoo. These search engines are the first stop for people anywhere in the world whether they need to buy a pair of shoes or order a sandwich from a local eatery.

Small Business Owner’s SEO Handbook

With so many people globally glued to their screens, it’s hardly surprising that big and small businesses want to make the best out of search engine optimization—which is best done through SEO strategies.

Why the Digital Marketplace Matters

Considering how the number of internet users has grown to 4,437 million, of which 4,031 million are mobile internet users, businesses have begun reaping the benefits.

Most major businesses have already jumped onto the bandwagon and understand robust SEO strategies’ relevance and importance. However, with established companies running digital empires, small businesses struggle to stand out in this highly competitive digital environment.

Forbes reports that SEO has become a “necessity” for small businesses. And since 93% of people worldwide begin their online voyages with a search engine, the significance of SEO strategies comes into focus even more sharply.

Basic Guide to SEO

On the surface, SEO is pretty simple to understand—and most people misunderstand it for this reason. However, the understanding that stuffing keywords into a couple of blogs and publishing them is what SEO entails is far from the truth and won’t get you anywhere.

To get things started, here’s what any small business owner needs to understand about SEO:

On-Page SEO

These are the strategies you undertake to improve your page’s quality, visibility, and rankings. This includes keywords, URLs, load speeds, user-friendly interface, responsive designs, formatting, and intelligent blogging. Anything you can do to improve your page is part and parcel of on-page SEO.

Off-Page SEO

This includes strategies that hover away from your website, mostly in terms of white hat link building. Social media marketing campaigns, creating business profiles, and publishing articles on third-party websites are also part of off-page SEO.

Getting Started

You have set up a small business, locally focused, and sold a particular product or service. The aim should now be to:

(a) Get as many people to know about your service as possible, and

(b) Keep them hooked to your business, ensuring referrals and long-term customer retention.

You’ve set up a website to keep up with the SEO scene. It has an aesthetically pleasing design, and you’re ready to begin publishing. Here’s what you need to bear in mind:

Local SEO

Small businesses have one slight advantage over more prominent companies, and that is the advantage of being locally placed. Yours is not a sprawling franchise that caters to thousands. You are, instead, focused on a specific community or niche, and it’s easier to tap into this consolidated target audience.

People searching locally for pepperoni pizza will use long-tail keywords such as “pepperoni pizza Studio City.” Create content centered on such keywords, and you’ll appear in people’s search engines more frequently, driving more traffic to your website.

Social Media Marketing

Be active on social media. Respond to customers and introduce a live chat option to show that you mean business. Post regularly, and allow people to post reviews. Nothing will get you more visibility than people checking in to your place or posting about your service on Facebook or Instagram.

Link Building

Always steer clear of black hat link-building techniques, no matter how tempting they might sound. Likewise, avoid spam and low-credibility websites linking to your page because it will harm your SEO ranking.

Additionally. . .

Ensure your small business is making little but steady progress in the digital world by incorporating these techniques:

  • Exhaustive keywords that are relevant and well-researched
  • Optimize keywords naturally to be more visible
  • Be authoritative in tone.
  • Keep monitoring your progress and make adjustments to your strategies accordingly.

Joseph Dyson is a Search Berg specialist in SEO strategies for small businesses, digital marketing, white hat link building, and more. Search Berg is a leading SEO company offering several digital marketing services and solutions to small businesses, such as professional SEO services, outsourcing SEO, link-building services, and more.

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