Running a small businesses is hard enough without having to worry about your websites ranking in the search results. Professional SEO is complicated and constantly changing in response to updates of Google’s search algorithm. Methods that we’re considered OK last year my now incur a penalty, or worse complete removal from the search results. All a bit of a minefield for a small business owner. This infographic is designed as a guide to small business SEO basics, and help you avoid some of the pitfalls.
Summary of Small business SEO do’s and don’ts
Small business SEO Do’s
- Keyword research: If you want your website to get found by your customers you have to know what your customers are searching for. Follow our Fast Guide to Keyword Research to find out how to research your keywords and which tools to use.
- Create great content: Google likes original content that people want to view and share. Sharpen up your writing skills and consider using visual media like photos, graphics, videos, and animations.
- Use meta tags: The title tag is a major ranking factor for Google’s search algorithm so you must use it. The meta description is not used in the search algorithm but can appear in the search results. A well written meta description that includes the pages keyword can increase click-through rates considerably.
- Use a responsive design: More than half of all Google searches are now made on mobile devices. If you want your website to appear in the mobile search results it must be mobile friendly. Google wants to present its users with links pages that give a good user experience, and trying to view a full-sized website on a small mobile screen doesn’t cut it. The easiest way to become mobile friendly is to use a responsive website design.
- Use social media: Social media is a great way to connect with potential customers and distribute your content. Before you jump in decide who your customers are, and which social media channels they are most likely to use. Follow our guide to small business social media for more details.
Small business SEO Don’ts
- Link building: Google dislikes deliberate link building and sees it as a way to manipulate the search engine results. If done badly it can give your website with an unnatural link profile, a warning signal that could get you demoted or even removed from the search results.
- Copy content: Google like original content, it does not like copied content. If the search algorithm spots content that was copied from another website it will probably ignore it and your page.
- Use meta keywords: The meta keywords tag has no SEO benefit and is ignored by the search algorithm. However, your competition can look at it and find out what keywords you’re targeting. Don’t make life easy for them, don’t use the keywords meta tag.
- Ignore page speed: Google considers user experience one of the most important aspects of a website. Slow websites give a poor user experience and increase the number of viewers that bounce. A fast website gives a good user experience and they are rewarded with a boost in the search results.
- Ignore your website: A regularly updated website is used as an indicator of the site relevance. Users want to see search results that are up to date. The more often a website is updated the bigger the SEO boost.