5 powerful SEO techniques for SMEs
As a small business, you might not have given much thought to search engine optimisation (SEO). It may seem quite an intimidating term if you have only thus far invested in a rudimentary online presence, and you may not even be aware what SEO is.
Alas, the right SEO is certainly vital if your SME is to thrive in this largely digital-oriented, interconnected world.
Higher search engine rankings for relevant keywords convert into substantial business benefits as more high quality traffic is driven to your site. Here are 5 techniques for making it possible.
1. Create consistent local listings
With the range of online social media and business sites out there being truly vast, and in the case of Ireland including our very own goldenpages.ie, there’s a lot of opportunity for you to publicise your business – but also a lot of opportunity for inconsistent information.
Search engines don’t trust your business so much if your firm’s essential details aren’t consistent across all of the sites where you have a listing. It helps to have as complete a listing as possible, too.
You can get a basic listing now on goldenpages.ie here free.
2. Maintain an active social media presence
Yes, even just being active on social media as a company can make a massive difference to your SEO fortunes. Think about it… would you trust and engage with a company that hasn’t updated its Facebook page for a while, or doesn’t have a social media profile at all?
Actively engaging and responding to the needs of customers on social media does not go unnoticed by the search engines.
3.Encourage customers to write reviews
While we don’t suggest that you outright ask customers to leave reviews of your company, some subtle encouragement to do so in a follow-up email or on an invoice could increase the likelihood of reviews being left by customers on the popular review sites.
Offering incentives for reviews isn’t advisable, as this can be seen as deceptive marketing. However, when your customers do leave reviews, your firm’s search visibility will certainly improve.
4. Avoid tripping a Google spam filter
Spam and link schemes can be so tempting for small businesses, but breaking Google’s extensive rules with regard to these could see your site heavily penalised in the rankings.
The long list of things not to do to ensure that you don’t trip Google’s spam filter, according to P.J. Fusco, include stuffing content with keywords, inviting or allowing comment spam and using hidden or small text on web pages solely for search engine spiders.
Nor is it a good idea to participate in ‘link farms’ or introduce new keyword phrases into old articles’ body copy, among the wide range of other ill-advised practices.
5. Optimise your actual website
Don’t presume that only off-page SEO counts. A properly optimised site will reap big rewards in the search results, and this can be achieved in various different ways, from including a contact page that features a business address identical to the one in local listings, to ensuring the all-round high quality and relevance of web copy.
These aren’t difficult SEO techniques to grasp, but all can have a significant impact on your SME’s search engine fortunes. Consider FCR Media’s own SEO packages as the perfect starting point.