The SEO Company Guide For Small Businesses
In this SEO company guide, we are going to look at the bigger picture for smaller business owners in the context of SEO. We are going to get tactical with limited resources in order to achieve increased traffic to the site, with an audience that is deeper in their buying cycle, offering a higher propensity to convert.
For smaller businesses, limited resources often play a decidable factor in SEO projects. There may be some companies in the same vertical that are far larger brands and have far more resources at their disposal. How would a smaller business take on these larger competitors? Let’s break it down, according to an SEO company.
What is SEO and how it works for small businesses?
SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimisation, which is roughly defined as improving the quality and quantity of traffic for a website by being ranked higher on search engines’ results pages. Google has a set of algorithms that look at more than 200 signals to determine how high your website ranks in its search results, with the most traffic going to the first result, then slightly less to the third, and then even less to the fourth and eventually little to no traffic on page two, as you progress down the search results. The higher your small business ranks, the more traffic you will receive, and the better it will be for the growth of your small business.
What is SEO in business?
In business, SEO is an online, organic acquisition channel that allows for growth in brand awareness and revenue if the value proposition of the website, the brand it represents, and the products and services available, to solve the visitor’s need at the appropriate market-orientated price. So SEO in business is a fundamentally a sales channel that is earned through content marketing formatted to match what Google’s looking for in terms of signals, from early in the consumer buying cycle or sale funnel to the deeper in the buying cycle, or closer to the decision making stage and then even post-purchase in terms of reviews.
Importance of SEO for small businesses
SEO has exponential reach potential, when content is considered extremely valuable to the target audience. Users may even share content from website to social media channels which may drive direct traffic to the site in return. The growth, although slow in the beginning, may eventually become exponential over the long term.
Another example of the importance of SEO for small businesses is the fact that it provides an opportunity to be considered an expert in an industry. You don’t need to have the most likes to offer sound advice or to solve a pain point for a member of your online target audience, you just need to be good at what you do and identify less competitive, longer-tail keyword phrases. This in turn can drive brand equity as users link back to your article and if you deploy a well-thought-out content strategy, even position you as an influencer. When all the questions lead back to your website with the answers, people trust that you know what you are doing or saying, this in turn drives conversions.
Challenges for small business according to an SEO company
Often larger brands will have more brand equity in the market and thus would have accrued far more backlinks. When companies tend to stand out more companies tend to naturally link back to them.
Backlinks tend to be the hardest to earn, in addition, and this factor is usually the most time-intensive and often a site will wait a few months for Google to crawl and find any backlinks pointing towards the smaller business site.
The great news is that you just have to match the competitors ranking above you and if you find longer tail competitor keywords then you will require far less authority.
Affordable SEO for small business
The idea is that we target the lower search volume, lower competitive search terms but that these search terms offer a higher propensity to convert. This is an affordable SEO tactic for small businesses. It takes dedication and time but will ensure that the traffic arriving on your site, although in lower volume, will still have an opportunity to increase revenue. It is better to have a few people very eager to buy in a store or a larger amount of people remotely eager? Also, as these longer terms are lower search volume hardly anyone cares to go for them and thus they offer a far easier probability of ranking higher.
How do we find longer-tail keywords according to an SEO company?
Google shows us longer tail keywords through Autosuggest, people also ask and related searches. These keyword phrases are not displayed randomly but are relevant according to Google’s Knowledge Graph. This means that these keyword phrases are relevant and are actually micro-keywords. An SEO company looks at the following:
Enter the primary keyword phrase in Google Search, and Google will display a drop-down list with longer-tail variations of the keyword phrase. Choose variations that make sense in terms of deeper down the buying cycle.
People also ask
The white squares with questions below the heading “People Also Ask” are actual search queries that offer little to no search volume when tested with Google keyword planner or standard SEO tools but they do have a search volume, a search volume with high conversion propensity.
The related searches are an example once again where Google is revealing how keywords are connected in its knowledge graph in terms of relevancy. These are also great keywords to target as they represent search queries.
Go Niche and granulated with content
Google always prefers a more granulated answer that is specific to the what information, service or product the user looking for. What we mean is Google would rather serve a website about bananas than a website about fruit if the searcher was searching for bananas, all other things held equal.
If your company offers an array of services choose the least competitive and most revenue-driving topics to optimise your site rather than everything. You can also mention your other products and services but be narrow in focus in terms of content overall. Larger sites can achieve many unrelated product service categories all ranking well as they have higher authority. Small businesses need to adapt a more focused approach to start with.
Create content that is truly valuable or need-solving to your target audience. This stimulates backlinks but also strengthens human engagement metrics such as dwell time and reduces bounce rates, and we believe Google is definitely using these signals for the bigger picture and will more and more.
SEO Company On-page Optimisation
Enter the keyword in the important sections of the page such as the page title, H1 tag, or main heading, and in every other paragraph. Ensure you optimise the image alt text labels. The idea is to make sure that Google knows what the page is about without being spammy.
Use real PR strategies to earn real links by ensuring your target audience learn about unique value propositions and they will link to you naturally. Reach out to trade associations that you are part of ensuring you are listed in the public-facing membership directory. Think of websites that are relevant to your vertical that act as directories or industry portals. Most importantly, make your content as link-worthy as possible to earn links and means valuable. Ensure your LinkedIn profile is linked to your site too as an example of a legitimate backlink that ads trust.
Site Structure like an SEO company
Make sure your site is as shallow as possible, don’t have many levels down such as using sub-product categories (but leave them if they are already set up like that, we mean if you are planning from the start, this could hurt your rankings). Google crawls and thus indexes content higher up in the information architecture, especially for smaller sites as Google crawls a site based on its size and addition of new content, a new small business site will not have as many regular crawls, initially. Smaller business sites need every edge.
SEO company sitemaps
Ensure that you have an updated XML sitemap. Google uses an XML sitemap like a street map in order to find your content. Google will not readily crawl the average smaller website deeply or often so when that crawler comes, ensure that you can show it exactly where your content is! When Google can find content more easily it can rank content faster.
Most small business owners will go for WordPress themes and this makes sense as it powers 45% of the web! WordPress themes suit SEO in addition, in terms of how most standard themes are structured. Be sure to go for themes that are light in resources, however, without sub-themes. You want something simple and light. As time goes by Google is looking at performance more and more with algorithm updates, think of the Core Web Vitals recently launched by Google as an example.
Plugins are usually not your friends, some are essential for non-developers but use the bare minimum you can get away with. Each additional plugin will increase the resources required for your website to run and thus slow the performance of the site.
Some very large backend visual editors make editing your site easy but use entire libraries of code to allow for that functionality. Choose an extremely simple content editor plugin, less is really more for performance and thus SEO. An SEO company prefers light themes or even custom coded where possible.
Google introduced Core Web Vitals last year. The level of skill required for converting current themes that do not match the preferred Core Web Vitals readings is beyond the scope of small business owners. Also, for a small business owner to employ a developer to implement the recommendations of Google will be very costly. The best idea is to choose a theme that gets it right from the beginning. Test themes for sale on online marketplaces at Google PageSpeed Insights before you buy them!
If you already have an established website that fails Core Web Vitals, at least for the moment, these signals do not seem to count too much but they certainly will count more in the future, so begin putting money away until you can afford a professional SEO company to fix them at a stage in the future when they will count more. Do not forget about them!
Ensure all your images are compressed. Using online compression tools, they are free. The idea is to help performance even though you are not a developer. Image compression is basic but an important way in which you can assist in site performance. Every SEO company compresses images.
Local SEO guide
Ensure you have your business name, official address, and telephone number, or NLP, on your contact us page. Also, ensure that it matches any other instance on the web, and keep the format the same. Google looks for consistency according to NLP to check for this uniform standardisation and it is a factor.
If you can, have your office as close to the point on Google maps where Google deems the centre of a geographical region. This plays a big role in whether your business will show if the searcher is using the keyword phrase and a geo-descriptor, especially if they are searching from an area just outside your location with an intention to visit your area. Also, the proximity of the searcher to your business is also a strong factor. Google states that it ranks locally dependent on prominence, relevance and distance.
Load a few meaningful full pictures up to your profile. You don’t have to do this all the time but ensure images help the searcher see your business’ products or services, or understand your business better.
Categorise yourself in one main relevant category where possible rather than many irrelevant categories. Align your category with your website content for relevant
Small business SEO reviews
Reviews are important and Google has admitted they are a factor in terms of superlatives such as “best”. In this instance, the most reviews you had would count in favour of ranking in the top three-stack result. In addition, you need to respond to any review, positive or negative as soon as possible.
Conversions are really what it is all about in terms of the bigger picture of an SEO company and it should be the same for a small business owner too. Small businesses rely on every sales lead to grow into bigger businesses. Conversion optimisation is the science of working out how to improve visitors to your site fulfilling the site objective such as contacting you about your service or buying goods online.
The idea is to be sure that in the above-the-fold section of the site, or the first visible area on load, that the visitor can, in one second, understand the value proposition of your site. Use strong contrasts and make sure the site is not overly busy, the main value proposition must be accompanied with a call to action or CTA that commands action from the site visitor as the copy or text on the button.
The colour of the button should contrast all other colors of the site in order to catch the user’s attention. The call to action should take directly the user directly to the order page or contact page, and there should be as few steps as possible to the final form submission or purchase. You want to reduce friction to complete the objective of the site.
Measurement and tracking for small business
Google Analytics is perfect for tacking any data you need about your website in terms of SEO but also conversions and even e-commerce performance. You can use a plugin to add to your website if using WordPress.
Google Search Console helps you understand how Google crawls and indexes your website and other SEO performance data. You don’t need any plugin for this, you can just add a snippet to your public folder where your website s published or to verify you can connect through a meta tag being placed on your site or even if the same Google account houses your Google Analytics account, then you will be auto-verified.
These SEO platforms offer all the tools that you would ever need, don’t be fooled by fancy third-party measurement programs. Some of them of fantastic but none of them are fully necessary with Google’s platforms. Trust an SEO company.
Does SEO work for small business?
Only if you have thought about and implemented all the principles in this SEO Company Guide for small businesses. If you think about what you are doing carefully, choose the correct keywords, and offer content that is truly valuable, your website will become a tool for your small business.
Let’s summarise the main SEO tips in this article according to an SEO company:
Target longer-tail keywords when your small business website is just starting out.
Be sure to be very clear about what the page s about in terms of your SEO, do not leave Google guessing.
Make sure your website is fast-loading, with light themes in terms of required resources to operate.
Ensure that your website has a shallow information architecture.
Publish content often and earn backlinks to it where possible.