SEO is one of the most basic building blocks to a successful website for your small business. Short for search engine optimization, SEO gets more eyes on your website by influencing your page rank in the search results. Simply put, appear on the first page of the results for relevant keywords in your local area and you’ll get a lot more business.
So how can you best use SEO to improve your search engine rankings? The best techniques to use are a far cry from the black hat tricks (keyword stuffing, etc) of the past. Today, the seven honest SEO tricks for business owners below will help you boost your website’s visibility without getting in trouble with the search engines.
The absolute easiest way to improve your website’s SEO is to regularly create new content. Out-of-date content is pushed aside by the search engines. Your users won’t find much value in it either. And more than ever before, the search engines are looking for content that has actual value for your customers. So put effort into creating content that matters. A regularly updated blog is a great place to start.
Incorporate category specific RSS feeds into your website to encourage people to revisit your site when you post new content relevant to their interests. In addition to visiting the page, these return visitors will likely spend more time on the page. Search engines take this kind of valuable traffic into considerations for their rankings.
Including links is one of the best ways to let search engines know what your content is all about. That’s why it’s so important to avoid using text like “click here” or “click now” for links. Use clear, simple, and descriptive text to let both users and search engines know exactly what the link holds. And link to authoritative sources (.edu or .gov) whenever possible.
Images have a variety of uses on a website. The primary one is, of course, to create more visually appealing content for your users. However, when tagged properly, images can boost your SEO as well. So tag and describe each image or video on your website so search engines know exactly what the image is and why a viewer will find it valuable.
Long URLs should be broken up with hyphens. Never use underscores. A hyphen breaks up long URLs, making them easy to read. Users will know exactly where the URL is taking them and search engines will be able to crawl them easily. Take care to make your website’s URLs brief yet descriptive.
Incorporating internal links into your content is a great way to allow users to more easily explore your website. Create links for relevant terms inside your website. For example, a webpage on your company’s plumbing services that mentions drain line cleaning should include a link to a page detailing your drain line cleaning services. Like outbound links, the anchor text used should tell users exactly where the link will take them.
The fact is every website has pages that aren’t valuable to users. A good example is a “thank you” page following a sale to a customer. Tag these pages with rel=”nofollow” to let search engines know they don’t need to crawl these internal pages. Failing to do so can seem superfluous and spammy to search engines.
SEO is Always Important
Sure, a website in and of itself is better than nothing – but not by much. In fact, a website that fails to employ basic SEO techniques won’t have much positive effect on your business. So use the seven search engine optimization tricks discussed above to boost your website’s visibility on the search engines and bring in more viewers through your online doors.
If you prefer the hands-off approach Academic Ads can help you grow your rankings, contact us today for a free consultation, we love to help businesses succeed!