An SEO Blueprint For Small Businesses
As a small business owner, you're busy managing the day to day affairs of your enterprise and may find that you have little time to manage your website. Such neglect is understandable if most of your customer transactions are completed face to face, and your website serves mostly as an informational portal for your clientele. For everyone else, a website can be an important business generator, a way for you to win new customers. However, to shine online you need to connect with people and one certain way to do that is by following a proven search engine optimization blueprint for your small business.
1. Easy to access. Your SEO blueprint begins with having a website that loads quickly, is easy to access and has clear navigation instructions. Navigation tabs should be placed where everyone can see them -- above the fold. Your site should make use of corporate style sheets or be based on a content management system platform such as WordPress to give every page and post a unified look.
2. Fresh and updated. Stale websites are typically buried by the search engines while sites with new and updated content perform better. The information on your website should be current, original and instructive. Regularly adding new material can help your site too, with well-written articles cited, linked to and easily discovered. Familiarize yourself with Google's "Webmaster Guidelines," information that will help you meet design, content, technical and quality guidelines.
3. Write magnetic headlines. Your articles must not only convey useful information, but should include headlines that pop. Boring headlines will only chase people away from your site, while interesting headlines will compel them to read on. Make yourself a student of Copyblogger.com by reading its magnetic headlines series.
4. Use keywords and variants. If you own a car loan business, then "car loan" is one of the keywords you'll use with your content. Using variations of this term can help your website shine. Make use of Google's AdWords Keyword Tool to find what related words and phrases are most searched for. With this example you can choose several including "used car loan" and "loan interest rate" or "car payment calculator," among others. Write articles covering these topics and post these to your site.
5. Build links naturally. The days of buying and selling links are gone. So are link exchanges between blogs and websites. Instead, build links naturally by generating links to others sites, except to your competitors. Linking out will get the attention of people as they use the same search engine alerts you use to find out when they're part of the conversation. If your material shines, you'll find your articles referenced with links back to your site. Inbound links will help your website become more visible, enabling you to attract more customers and expand your business.
Search engine optimization takes time and is an on-going affair. Stay at it and your site will benefit as will your business. If you find that you need help, an SEO company can manage your campaign or advise you on the steps you can take to thrive online.