With Google seeing billions of searches each day, it’s more important than ever for small businesses to step up their SEO (search engine optimization) game. Numbers show that most Google clicks are among the top 5 or so results. Meaning, if your site isn’t on the first page of search results, and among the top five of those results, then your site might be lost in the mix of billions of others.
SEO needs to be an important part of your site, blog design, and in your business model. Before you jump into the world of SEO, you may want to consider some ideas when building out your pages, posts, and with business planning.
This blog will provide helpful SEO tips and considerations to boost website search rankings.
1- Research keywords
Regardless of your industry and expertise, researching keywords to uncover the latest trending keywords helps you tailor your content to what’s new and current ultimately helping your website’s chances of getting seen online.
You can begin your search through resources like Semrush and Google Keyword Planner that help you find keywords and popular topics you can begin to include in your content and write about.
Include related keywords throughout your content as well. To find related keywords, you can enter a search term that someone might use to find your post in Google. If you scroll to the bottom of a Google results page, you can also see related searches. All of this helps you figure out what to include in your content.
2 – Keyphrasing
A keyphrase isn’t just a word people search for, it’s a phrase. Having a good keyphrase for your posts in place helps narrow down what people are really searching for. You may have a title for your blog or article, but it’s likely people will only search a particular word and not the entire phrase.
When deciding on what keyphrase to use, think about the one that would yield the best search results and that has the lowest competition. Once you settle on a good keyphrase, include it in the title, meta description, URL, and somewhere in the opening paragraph.
If you’re confused on what keyphrase to use, you can use SEO plugins like Toast, Google XML, Squarely SEO, and SEOPress and more that help you pick the perfect keyphrase for your page or blog.
3 – Headlines
Research shows that the length of your headline and body copy plays a large role in the success of your post. Usually, only the first and last three words of your headline are read so it’s important to get to the point when creating headlines.
On average, a large majority of average readers will read a 3-minute-long post, and even more readers will consume a post that takes six minutes to read, so it’s important to know how much to write as not to overwhelm or underwhelm the average reader.
Pay attention to what your audience wants. Too short of a post and you run the risk of not getting your point across, as well as not getting the search results placement you want. Google tends to like posts with a modest word count. If your content is too lengthy, you run the risk of scaring readers away. It’s all about finding a happy medium, and that takes practice.
A reasonable word count usually sits around the 2,000-2,400 range. Abbreviate where you can and don’t force words as well. If your blog ends up being a little shorter, so be it. You don’t want to risk losing the reader to unnecessary words and sentences that don’t add value to your message.
When it comes to titles, get creative! Using power words like, you, free, risk free, secrets, instantly, easy, don’t miss, discover, etc., are all words that stir up emotion in the reader called an emotional marketing value (EMV).
You can improve your headlines by using the plugin AIOSEO that comes equipped with a headline analyzer that provides suggestions on how to improve your headlines. You can also go old school and have friends, co-workers, or family peer-review your headlines and choose the one that gets the best response.
4 – Linking
Linking is very helpful when it comes to SEO, so get into the habit of linking both internally and externally. When you link internally, you can just link to the alternate page or post, because the reader will still be on your site.
When linking externally, ensure the site opens in a separate browser so your site is still on the reader’s radar, and on their mind. If you link to an older article, edit the older article to include a link back o the newer article. This will help the reader hop back to the first article to continue reading.
5 – Images
A large portion of information sent to our brain is visual, that’s why it’s important to include images and videos to your posts. It’s also proven that posts with images receive way more more clicks! Images also get indexed; meaning, you get double the exposure.
If you can’t provide your own photos, places like Pexels, Canva, and Pixaby, are great sites that offer high-quality stock photos free to download. Be sure to avoid using images that have a copyright because you could get hit with a cease and desist. Also check to see if your images are optimized and include alt text in them! Doing so saves headaches in the long run.
6 – Organize your site
Use categories to sort out different topics on your website. Rather than having a menu item labeled “recipes,” break it down into a drop-down menu that sorts all your posts into different categories. Having a categories section makes your site easier to navigate and helps in your SEO ranking as well.
7 – Social Media
With all these SEO tips in mind to help you get to the top Google search results, it’s important to remember to utilize other resources too. Social media is a great choice, and it’s for free. If you use SEO in your blogs and web content in conjunction with social media promotion, you’re likely to receive more visitors on your site.
Something to save you time posting across social media platforms is by using a social media plugin like Later or Blog2Social that allows you to publish across multiple platforms in seconds.
Start your SEO journey
This list of SEO tips isn’t inclusive, but a great starting point to getting your site notice on Google. It’s important that small business owners creating content do their own research when it comes to marketing their site. No matter how you choose to advertise your brand, if you’re consistent and calculated in how you do it, it will pay off in the end.