seo-for-small-business

SEO for small business

SEO for Small Business

If you’re running a small business or thinking of launching a new business, you might be wondering if it’s possible to compete with larger companies in Google search. This is a common question, and the short answer is: yes, it’s possible.

 As a small business, there are tactics you can use to increase your presence in Google search, especially on a local level. If you’re a service-based business that serves a particular region or you do business locally, you can use the following SEO tips to increase your online presence and credibility.

When you’re visible online, your potential customers can get in touch with you quickly and easily.

 Here are 5 SEO tips that can help your small business rank among the bigger players in Google.

 

  1. Create a Google My Business Account.

If you haven’t yet created a Google My Business account, this should be first on your to-do list. It’s free, easy, and it won’t take much time to create. 

A Google My Business account is critical for small businesses that provide services to a specific region, especially tradesmen and home improvement businesses. A Google My Business account gives businesses like HVAC, plumbing, and electrical service providers a chance to be seen by local people who are looking for your exact services.

Once you’ve established your Google My Business account, there are some things you can do to boost your profile and make it more visible.

       Get reviews. Think of the last time you needed a service. You probably checked at least one online review platform (like Yelp or Google) before making your decision. This has become commonplace. Reviews make your business visible for free and boost your credibility to your potential customers. And, studies show that online reviews are just as important to a business’s reputation as word of mouth. 

It’s a fact that people look at reviews before they make a decision to do business with you. According to Qualtrics’ online review stats, 97% of people read reviews for local businesses online, and 93% of consumers are influenced by reviews when making buying decisions.

If your home services business doesn’t have online reviews, consider reaching out to past customers and ask them to leave you a review on your Google My Business page.

       Respond to negative reviews. If you find that your service-based business has a negative review, address it. Instead of trying to pay to get a review removed (you can’t), be sure to respond to any negative reviews.

Regardless of why someone left the negative review, future customers will appreciate seeing a response from the business owner. This helps build trust for customers who are shopping around online for home improvement services.

 

  1. Make Sure You Have a Mobile-Friendly Site.

In 2020 and beyond, having a mobile-friendly website isn’t a “nice to have”—it’s absolutely essential.

Consider this: in 2019, over 50% of internet users were navigating the internet via mobile devices. The number of mobile users is projected to increase over time. This means that having a mobile-friendly site is critical if you want to reach more of the potential customers who are seeking your services and searching for these services online.

How do you check whether your website is mobile-friendly? You can enter your business website’s URL on Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test page to get a free analysis. If your site needs to be updated, you can partner with a design/development firm to make sure your site on par with today’s standards. This may be an investment, but it’s extremely important if you want your site to rank well in search and appeal to your customers.

Another option is to use a mobile-ready website builder with a built-in theme to get your mobile-friendly site up to standard relatively quickly and easily.

 

  1. Provide Fresh and Unique Content.

If you want your small business’s website to get ranked in Google, a great way to do this is to publish fresh and unique content consistently.

Give your readers something to come back for. When you’re building readership for your blog or looking to get more eyes on your website, it’s important to publish new content. A stale website doesn’t invite anyone to return to see what’s new. Publish content on a consistent basis to keep readers coming back to your website time and time again. And, publishing relevant, useful content for your readers will give you authority in your industry.

Fresh and unique content gives your readers something to share on social media or with friends and colleagues. If you haven’t started a blog, now is a perfect time. Publishing short articles on a consistent basis is a great way to get started with creating content for your audience.

 

  1. Employ Link Building Strategies.

Out of the hundreds of factors that Google claims to consider when ranking a page in search, link building is one factor that’s been going strong for years.

Link building is an organic SEO tactic that improves your search engine ranking. It means that you have quality hyperlinks on other websites that link back to your website.

This might sound daunting at first—how do you get other sites to link to your site? Employing link building strategies will help you do this. You can get your small business featured on relevant blogs in your industry. Or, you can find influencers in your industry and ask them to publish some content written by you on their blog or website and include your website link. Remember to focus on getting quality backlinks, not just a high quantity of links. 

 

  1. Have HTTPS in Your Business Website’s URL.

Internet users are savvy, and they’re more aware now than ever of the dangers of unsafe or unsecured websites. If your website’s URL starts with HTTP and not HTTPS, that means your website isn’t given the “safe” seal of approval.

Go ahead and do a quick test. Type your website’s URL in your browser and look at the search bar. You’ll either see a lock symbol indicating “safe”, or a red warning, signaling “unsafe.” Now, if your URL begins with “https://” (which stands for Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure), your website is going to be more safe and secure to use, and it will be seen as such to your visitors and Google.

Yes, that one “s” makes a big difference when it comes to SEO. This is because having HTTPS is one of Google’s ranking signals. HTTPS uses security measures like SSL certificates to encrypt data sent between the website and the user’s computer. It also proves to your users that they’re communicating with your site and not a harmful site that could be mimicking your website.

As you can see, HTTPS is a much more secure option than HTTP, and is really a necessity when optimizing your business website for SEO.

Get started on SEO for your business

As a small business owner or someone looking to launch a business, you can compete with larger companies in Google search. Don’t let your fear of SEO prevent you from getting started. Here’s an article that can help you understand why SEO is important for small businesses like yours.

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