16th May 2017 Claire Hawes

5 SEO tips small businesses can’t afford to ignore

When your audience has a need, use these SEO tips to help your site be visible in the search engines. Also, to drive traffic to your site.

Don’t you think your website is a wonder of design? It’s modern, uncluttered and features beautiful imagery.

It seems like there’s only one thing that’s letting it down. Unless you type your site’s URL into a search engine, nobody can find it.

It’s a familiar story. Let me guess, you:

  • Don’t have the budget for search engine optimisation (SEO)
  • Find SEO too difficult to get your head around
  • Simply don’t have the time to worry about it

I thought so. But by neglecting your SEO, you’re missing out on warm leads.

Let me explain. People who use the Internet to search for information have a need. If your product/services are returned in the search results, then you’re answering their needs.

Unlike traditional marketing tactics, you’re not interrupting people with adverts. You’re not boring them with ‘sponsored’ advertorial. You are providing your audience with answers to unprompted questions they have asked.

And guess what?

You don’t have to spend lots of money to make your site visible in the search engines. You just need to focus on a few key areas to help it to rank organically (in the natural search results).

Here are 5 simple SEO tips to get you started.

SEO tip 1. Keyphrase research

Keyphrases are terms your audience type into a search engine when they are looking for information. So brainstorm the terms your visitors are likely to use at every touch point in your sales cycle. Better still; ask your customers what terms they use. For example:

  • Need arousal: How can I increase my search engine page rankings?
  • Information search: What is SEO copywriting?
  • Evaluation of the alternatives: SEO copywriting case studies
  • Purchase decision: SEO copywriting quotation

SEO tip 2. Draft unique meta titles and meta descriptions for every page

When you type in a search query, search engines use meta content, in addition to visible page content to return the most relevant results. If you want your pages to rank well organically, write keyphrase rich meta titles and meta descriptions that are relevant to your individual pages.

Furthermore, the SERPS (search engine ranking pages) are your first opportunity to sell. To stand out in the search results and to encourage page clicks, make sure your meta titles and meta descriptions are persuasive and benefit focused. For example:

Meta title: 5 SEO tips small businesses can’t afford to ignore | The Content Boutique

Meta description: When your audience has a need, use these SEO tips to help your site be visible in the search engines. Also, to drive traffic to your site.

SEO tip 3. Think local

Claim your free ‘Google My Business’ listing. It’s easy to set up and makes sure you appear in local results.

In addition, set up listings with reputable local business listings providers such as Yell.com and local business associations such as the Chambers of Commerce.

Elsewhere, take advantage of reviews. When your audience is considering its options, reviews will help them in their decision-making process.

SEO tip 4. Optimise your images for search

Search engines cannot see images. Assist search engine crawlers, and indeed visually impaired visitors. Write short, keyword rich, ‘alt descriptions’ to describe your images.

Do not, however, stuff your ‘alt descriptions’ with keywords though. Google will not thank you for it. One relevant keyword per image will suffice.

Oh, and by the way. Buttons such as ‘buy now’ are also images. So remember to write ‘alt descriptions’ for them too. For example:

‘For copywriting services click this button’.

SEO tip 5. Post regular content

Search engines use web crawlers to scan the Internet for websites. They’re busy creatures. If your website is static, they’ll have no time for you.

So update your website with high quality and relevant content and you’ll be rewarded.

Beware though, waste their time with keyword stuffed, low-quality content, and they’ll penalise you.

To sum up

You’ve spent a lot of money developing a beautifully branded website. But without SEO, you might as well have dug a hole and buried your budget in it. SEO:

• Gives your business visibility and credibility
• Attracts people who are already looking for your products and services
• Drives enquiries and sales

Can you really afford not to take SEO seriously?

And finally

If you would like help writing search engine optimised copy for your website, then do get in touch. With SEO copywriting, your site will not only be visible in the search engines, but also you’ll convert readers into qualified enquiries.

Claire Hawes, copywriter and owner of The Content BoutiqueAbout Claire Hawes

Claire Hawes is a marketing communications copywriter. She enjoys writing engaging copy that helps businesses to get noticed and attract enquiries. Claire’s experience mainly lies in the business to business sector. Her clients include both businesses and digital marketing agencies.

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