One of the top concerns for many business owners is increasing traffic to their website. SEO (Search Engine Optimization) is the process that can help increase visibility of your website via “natural” or “organic” search results, but you probably already knew that! Without SEO, however, your website will just be floating “out there” on the internet, not really doing much. So, if you’re a small business owner who wants to increase traffic to your website, we have some SEO tips to help you:
- Do your research. Keyword research, that is. Utilize the Google Keyword Tool, Google Insight, and Google Suggestions. Once you get your list of keywords, we suggest downloading them into an Excel spreadsheet, find the keywords that match your website content and products/services, then sort the list by daily searches (this will be given to you by the Google Keyword Tool). The most relevant/popular phrase or keywords should be used in the <title> tag. Gone are the days when keywords guaranteed a high ranking, but use of unique keywords in title and description can certainly help in your quest for better ranking.
- Content is king! Google loves content that is unique and has a high level of quality. Webpages clearly written for spiders will be penalized, so it is important not to go overboard with the keywords. Content should definitely be optimized for search engine optimization, but it is important to strike the right balance of keyword usage. A smart piece of content may have 2-3 keywords in it.
- Create backlinks. Backlinks are incredibly important right now. Google looks at backlinks as an indicator that your site is a good one in regards to the subject matter. Try to get as many backlinks as you can from reputable sites. For example, you could offer to write a guest blog post for a particular website, in return for the opportunity to place a link to your website. That being said, make sure the backlinks are high quality and relevant. Search engines may even penalize your page if it has too many irrelevant backlinks, as that can be considered SPAM.
- Get social! The current top 5 social bookmarking sites, in order of popularity are: Twitter, digg, StumbleUpon, Reddit, and Pinterest. You may not have thought of Twitter as a social bookmarking site, but it actually is. These 5 websites (and many more that we didn’t list) are very well optimized and cached by search engines every day. If your content and links are bookmarked on these sites, you can expect your site to get cached by Google within 24 hours as well.
- Blog. Search engines, specifically Google, love blogs for the fresh content and structured data. If you have the time, post to your blog twice a week. They don’t have to be really lengthy blogs, but as we said in tip #2, post unique and quality content to your blog. Reading and commenting on other blogs can also increase your exposure and help you acquire backlinks, as we discussed in tip #3.
There you have it – 5 easy ways to increase traffic to your website by using SEO techniques. Above all, be patient. SEO is not always about instant gratification. Results can take months, especially for small businesses who have just started a new website. Commit yourself and your website to the process, and call us if you have any questions or need help!