If you run a small business without a dedicated marketing department, chances are you don't have someone on the team who is keeping up with the ever-changing landscape of SEO.
The question, then, is what can you do to keep up?
There are many important gears involved with strong SEO, but there are four big ones that really matter :
1. Content Marketing
Let's start with content marketing. Small businesses often don't have the budget to hire a full-time writer or editor for their site, which is where content marketing comes in.
A key part of this is writing high-quality guest posts. If you're really good at what you're doing, you'll have hugely relevant connections. Approach them and pitch them content. If they like it, they'll publish it on their site and link it to you. This is a win-win for everyone involved — including your potential customers.
There are also a number of new, exciting tools that help you write high-quality content, from blogging platforms like HubSpot or WordPress to tools like BuzzSumo. Just make sure you have the right people in place to deliver the content and track how it performs online.
2. Technical SEO
Search engines have a lot of pull when it comes to determining rankings. In the early days, there was way more control over this than there is now. Now, however, it's important to have a strong technical understanding as well as strong writing skills and knowledge of the industry.
Among the most important tools for technical SEO are (in no particular order):
Google Search Console/Webmaster Tools
Google Analytics/Site Search Consistency Checker
Google Webmaster Guidelines (both on-page and off-page)
Google Webmaster Tools tutorials & answers pages. Google has a ton of resources you can use as need be. You might find a resource here in the process of indexing your site, too.
3. Technical Audits
Every once in a while, search engines will change their algorithm, or change how they rank sites overall in the SERPs. When this happens, it's very important that you act fast to fix any problems with your site that might be causing you to lose traffic and rankings. Technical audits are a great way to ensure that you know what needs to be fixed and get your site fixed up in a short period of time.
4. Content Curation
The final strategy is content curation, which is the process of finding the best content on the web relevant to your niche, writing short summaries of it, and adding it to your site (sometimes even with a credit). This is a fantastic way of building links with your own site, but also a great way to help others if they find your summary useful. What strategies do you use to get articles, links, and visitors to your site?
Many small businesses are utilizing content marketing in their strategies, but they don't have the SEO prowess that is required. Content marketing is important, but if you're just starting out in a competitive market, it can be hard to stand out from the crowd if you don't also have a strong technical SEO game.
Stay abreast of Google's SEO updates by reading their official blog posts about changes. The other option is to keep an eye on website and blog rankings for your top keywords. The problem is that both of these strategies are time-consuming. When you combine content curation with technical SEO, you have a full-fledged content strategy that will get your website to the top of the search engines. This is the best way to ensure that you're using every strategy possible to boost your site in the search results related to your main keyword.
Search Engine Optimization can generate your business with organic traffic that may be costing your competitors 10s of thousands of dollars to get. But it comes with its own work and investment before you can be in a competitive position. Although in the long run, it is far more powerful than just an ads strategy alone.
So you want to get started with improving your website's SEO?
Here are 5 ideas to make your life easier when working on your SEO strategy:
1. Develop a content curation strategy and plan a calendar
There's a lot of noise on the internet, and it can be hard to determine what is important and what isn't. One way to filter out the noise is by using a content curation strategy. It will help you to keep only the content that you deem important based on your goals for the site. The next step is also essential: create a schedule and decide on a date for when you want to kick off your new strategy.
2. Designate time for technical SEO
There's no point in pursuing technical optimization if your website's ranking isn't going to take advantage of it. Your technical SEO strategy must be a long-term commitment. If you're going to spend the time and resources on it, you need to be able to look at the long-term goals.
Some of these strategies will take weeks or months before taking effect. That's why goal setting is so important to create a compelling goal for your technical SEO efforts.
3. Dedicate time to content creation
Unfortunately, there's no quick fix for content creation. Of course, you can outsource or use other content generation tactics, but those take time as well. Therefore, it's important to plan your content calendar at least one month in advance.
4. Manage guest posting strategy
Quality guest posting is a good way to build links and get traffic from other websites. It's important to pay attention to the quality of the website, but you also have to be strategic about where you are going to place your pitch. You want it to be in the right place so that qualified leads will be directed there (thanks to your high-quality content). This will help make your job easier when it comes time for them to contact you.
5. Create a well-thought-out keyword strategy
It's crucial to think of your keyword strategy as early on in the process as possible. This is when you have the most control over what you're going to write for your site. The more time you spend researching, the better your keyword strategy will be.
There is a lot to SEO and it can seem daunting, it may be a good idea to get a consultation from an expert. An expert can analyze your website, content and business to identify the best strategies for your website and create a plan of action for you to follow.
An SEO consultant will help with keyword research, designing a website structure, ensuring that crucial pages are indexed on Google and Bing search engines, building links back to your site, creating unique content for your site and optimizing it through the various platforms.