Small Business SEO
You have just demonstrated the first of Steven Covey’s “The 7 Habits,” …” Be Proactive.” Great Job, you have started the journey towards financial success! I look forward to taking this journey with you, and am always here if you get stuck … just an email or phone call away.
If you haven’t heard the term by now SEO or “Search Engine Optimization” is the word used to describe what you are wanting and needing to do with your website right now. Recently I got an email from Aaron Rudman from the evergreen academy. Typically I don’t follow up on link ask emails. I also don’t typically care much for the tactic. I did however enjoy his email. I also clicked his link to see his “amazing resource.” It was honestly amazing. He had tons of custom made videos all on one page. They were really informative and high quality.
This took a huge amount of time for him to do. I realized that. I also realized how much help it offered to business owners. That resource is here: How To Do SEO For Business Owners.
You may already know that Google has invented a very complex, often changing algorithm to rank the importance and relevance of websites. You see the end result every time you perform a google search. At last count there were 200+ factors taken into account within this algorithm. Brian Dean, the genius behind backlinko.com, wrote a comprehensive article about each of them here.
As a rule, the place to be when someone searches for something on google, let’s say “contractor in my area” for example, is on the first page of results. The ideal spots would be in the top 3, with number 1 being the coveted spot. From results as recently as 2013, online ad network company Chitika determined that in a web search the number one spot garnered around 33% of the clicks while the 2 and 3 spots received 17.6% and 11.4% respectively. Another astonishing find by their study was that 95% of the clicks stayed on the first page of results. To say it another way, if your company doesn’t show up in the first ten spots of a google search there is a 95% chance you won’t be seen at all.
In this Guide I am going to walk you what we have found to be the most heavily weighted components of that algorithm. If you don’t have these right, then the other 200 won’t matter much … or be nearly as effective.
#1. Website Structure
One of the most crucial factors is the actual structure of the website. Google uses a massive set of computers running a program called GoogleBot to search, or “crawl” the billions of pages on the web in order to categorize and index information. This GoogleBot, also called “bots” or “spiders”, travels to URL’s (think the webs version of a street address) and then uses Links (the webs version of streets) to travel between those addresses to gather data. The problem with having a “discount” (the one that was the cheapest option at the time) website is that many times there are no “streets” connecting each page on the site, and what the “bot” sees when it gets there (your page content) doesn’t have what google needs to classify the address (Think a business with no sign…. or a sign that just says “Joe’s” …Joe’s what? Diner, Garage, Barber Shop?)
A good website structure should be organized similar to an outline for a book report, or everyone’s childhood favorite, the dreaded research paper outline. This is a relatively new type of organization and has been termed “Silo Structuring”. It is on the cutting edge of SEO practices, you can read about more in depth from the guy’s at Dominant Link SEO here. Each page should have a relevant title, as well as text on the page that relates to that title. There should also be links to supporting pages with different, but related content with the same titling and content techniques. With this proper structure Googles “bots” can accurately “crawl” a site, index it, and include it in relevant search results.
Example of an effective “silo” structure:
To be a little more specific, let’s use our website at DominantLink as an example. The home page is: www.dominantlinkseo.com
One of the pages connected to the home pages is: http://www.dominantlinkseo.com/digital-marketing/
And then one of the pages connected to that page is: http://www.dominantlinkseo.com/digital-marketing/digital-marketing-consulting/
Do you see how the pages stay in the same “silo” and all point back to the domain of Dominant Link? In this way, the domain and page authority is shared throughout the site, making the site as a whole stronger.
#2. Keyword Campaign
The next logical step in making your website a viable and visible revenue generating tool is determining what keywords you want to try and go after. What exactly does that mean? If you own a siding and window company in Booger Hollow, Ar. (yes, that’s a real place!) trying to show up in one of the top spots for a search of “Siding” would be extremely expensive and time consuming. If you wanted to rank instead for “Siding and Window Installers in Pope County Arkansas” that would be a much easier task. “Siding” as a search term is a very broad topic, also known as a “short tail keyword”. Short tails don’t usually have the highest conversion rate from search to sale. They would usually be used in general research and information gathering. “Siding and Window Installers in Pope County Arkansas” is an example of a long tail keyword. Long tails generally indicate someone who is close to making a purchase, in this case it would seem they already have their wallet out. While the obvious conclusion would seem to be that one would need to go after only Long Tails if they wanted to make money, the fact of the matter is that the quantity of search queries for Long Tails is substantially less…therefore generating less revenue. The sweet spot seems to be with medium tails, they have a higher search frequency as well as a more targeted search, so you get the best of both…good frequency and higher conversion.
So, now I have my keywords…how exactly do I rank for them?
Remember earlier when we talked about having the appropriate titles and content for your pages? In this article, my goal was to rank for “small business SEO” and “SEO for small business”. In my keyword research ( I use keywordcanine, but you can find a free keyword tool here ) I discovered that “small business SEO” garnered 720 monthly searches and “Seo for small business” pulled in 260, these are a good example of the “medium tales” we just talked about. Since it is a targeted keyword that’s not a bad rate in this instance.
Now to the title and content portion; as you can see by the title of the article “Small Business SEO”, and by several uses of “Small Business SEO” and “SEO for Business” in the article, Googles “spiders” should have no problem determining what this post is about and where it fits in their grand indexing scheme.
What the heck are backlinks? Earlier I described them as the “streets” that connect the pages of sites together. As any of us directionally challenged people already know, a set of directions that starts on a popular street such as Broadway or Central Avenue are much easier to navigate than one that starts at Alley 007 or some other obscure street. Popular, or “Authority” sites are given more credibility and clout by Google. The links from such sites are given more credibility as well. The more “streets” leading to your site, the more weight it will carry, which will impress Google.
If your site is “linked” to (referenced) by Whitehouse.gov it will carry a TON of weight, commonly referred to as “Link Juice”. Alternatively, if your site contains links from welovetospampeople.net, the “juice” would not be so great, and quite possibly result in a google penalty. The “link neighborhood” also plays a large part, welovetospampeople.net would most likely be considered a “bad neighborhood” while conversely, who wouldn’t want to live in the Whitehouse? The more links from reputable sites, the more likely you are to win Google’s “popularity contest”.
#4. Content Creation and Amplification
So how do I get links from good sites?
That depends. How much time do you have? Being successful in the creation and amplification (promotion) of content weighs heavily on how good your content is. Are you able to provide relevant and useful information to your audience? If so, the likelihood of a successful linking campaign becomes much more possible. If your content is dated, or just flat out stinks, the chance that you will get good links diminishes. If you are able to write a good blog, a good method would be to contact influential bloggers within your field and ask them if you could write a guest blog on their site…most bloggers are more than happy to add good content to their site. Also, posting blogs in Linkedin groups is a good way to get noticed.
Anyone can create good content, but this is where the time factor comes in. Most business owners spend upwards of 60 hours working IN their business, which doesn’t allow for much time working ON their business. I refer to this self-perpetuating cycle as the “hamster wheel”. No matter how fast you run, you seem to stay in the same place. This is where a reputable SEO company becomes an invaluable tool. SEO pros can actually create and promote content for a business. If you have a REALLY good SEO team, like the one here at feedster.com, they will already have partnerships with strong sites and owners (with massive “Link Juice”) who are available to amplify content for them. They should also have the ability to buy backlinks, the importance again becomes REPUTABLE SEO services…you don’t want links from the “bad neighborhoods” we spoke about earlier, or any other “black hat” practices that could earn you a google penalty. (A Google penalty is enacted on a site that is believed to be using practices that are underhanded in order to improve rankings…such as spamming, for example.)
I truly hope this has helped you, and motivated you to make your business more effective. We always love to hear how we have helped others, so feel free to drop us a line at contenthow.com.
If you aren’t sure where to start, we would like to extend a discounted promotional offer to our “Proactive” readers. If you would like to receive a site analysis of your website, we are offering a limited time “Bring in the New Year Right” analysis for only $7!
What the What?!? Yes, only $7!
We are very excited about where 2016 is going to take us, and we want to share that excitement with you. In this analysis we will provide:
- Your SEO Technical Analysis
- Your SEO score
- Site Structure Analysis
- Your Alexa Popularity Rank
- Traffic Estimates
- Page Titles
- Your Keywords from On-Page Content
- Links and Link Rank
- Facebook and Twitter “likes”, “shares”, and “follows.” (if you provide url’s)
- Plus anything else we see that needs fixed to make you the best you can be!
email will @ feedster . com for more info
Will is the Executive Managing Editor at Feedster. Will and his team from Content HOW work with venture capital, marketing co-ops, and companies to attract and gain qualified leads.
His primary focus on developing a sales funnel for a company and finding out of the box / growth hacking style ways to convert and drive traffic.