You’ve probably heard a lot of talk about SEO and how important it is for driving traffic and new customers to your business – so let’s break it down into a strategy? How can you use this as a tool to build your customer base?
It’s not anything strange or exhausting or obscure, SEO stands for search engine optimisation, which simply means that you optimise your website for search engines like Google or Bing. The better your website is at this, the easier it is for you to be found by new potential customers.
Not convinced of its importance? Well, let’s put it like this. Last month, there was roughly 12 billion searches made using Google and of that 85% of those searchers were most likely to click on the top five results found on the organic (left-hand) side of the search results.
In this article we’re going to give you five hacks on how to get your website search engine optimised so that more customers find your business.
1. Find your ranking
Before you spend time on any kind of SEO strategy, you need to figure out where you rank for the keywords i.e. the key search terms you want your business to be associated with. This isn’t as easy as Googling ‘quality’ or ‘high performance’ or even your own brand name. Google personalises search results for everyone, so to get an unpersonalised view you need to open a separate window “Incognito” so the results won’t reflect your searches.
What key search terms do you want your business to be associated with?
Some people prefer to use an SEO ranking tool. By doing this you will get daily reports with your ranking across all search engines and you’ll get a trending report of your web presence.
2. Set your SEO strategy
Once you’ve found your ranking it’s time to look and your business and what you have to offer. Every serious entrepreneur knows that taking some time to set a strategy will benefit immensely in the long run. The best thing about SEO is that it’s not difficult to crack but it does take time and thought. Once you evaluate what your business has to offer and what areas of your business you want to highlight the next steps are easy.
3. Choose your keywords
The next step is choosing keywords. Keywords are the search terms that you want associated to your business.
Think about going for keywords that are highly relevant to your brand or products, that have a high exact match search volume at a local level in Google’s free AdWords Keyword tool, and that words that have a low difficulty score. Basically the trick is to try to think of what people in your country might be Googling if they are searching for your service. Keep it simple and obvious.
Another tip is to choose words that you will use or that you have already used in blog topics or other content platforms associated to your brand. By doing this you capitalise on long-tail keywords – these are searches that people use that have more than one word.
Pro-tip! Avoid over-stuffing! This occurs when multiple pages are trying to rank for the same keyword or when you put unrelated keywords and send out spammy links to Googlers. This may result in Google blacklisting your site, which will make you virtually invisible. So, just don’t do it.
4. Publish content regularly
In addition to choosing the right keywords, a strong SEO strategy includes a commitment to posting content on a regular basis. Content is at the heart of SEO because content is HTML text and without HTML text, you’ll never be found in Google. It’s good to also know that Google will always prioritise fresh, relevant content, just in case you needed another reason.
Pro-tip! A good place to start is by evaluating your website and deciding if you think the content you currently have on your site could be improved. Are there places where you can add keywords into existing content?
5. Use social media to boost your rating
These days social signals now account for 8% to 10% of their organic search algorithms which means that Google evaluates the amount of social signals that are being produced by your web presence.
To clarify, a social signal can be an Instagram post or a comment, a tweet (on Twitter) or retweet, a Facebook Like or Share. Here are a few tips to help increase your social signals:
- Ensure you have the social sharing icons on every page of your website and perhaps consider including some social media exclusive offers.
- Incorporate Facebook and Instagram into your site wherever possible and update your page regularly with news about your business and offers.
- If possible, invite customers to like your on Facebook and follow them on Twitter and Instagram.
Pro-tip! Don’t spam – this isn’t just about SEO, it’s also about your community. Ensuring that you post content that are relevant and interesting is key to making this work for you.
While it might seem like something you could overlook, SEO is an important part of attracting new customers online. Give it a try and tell us how it goes!
Don’t miss our previous articles in The Business Owner Blog making online marketing easy, start off with How to advertise your small business online!