Here’s an interesting comment made by one of the people I met recently at a networking event: “What business SEO should I do to increase my sales?” The question puzzled me! What did he mean by business SEO? We talked for 20 odd minutes and I asked him questions about his business, what he did, how long he has been in business and what SEO has he done. He said he was a business coach. He told me that he has done some Twitter comments and blog commenting on a few industry-related blogs, but has not seen any impact. He now wants to do business SEO to increase visibility and sales. I asked about his Twitter comments and what exactly was he doing. The answer was “making random comments, re-tweeting stuff and talking about what I do…” So below is a summary of what I suggested to him about how to use SEO for his business. Don’t skip the On-Page basics It’s easy to be drawn to each new SEO fad, and join a race to implement anything new to your SEO efforts; so much so that many business people forget about the simple SEO basics. These basics should be the cornerstone of every SEO for businesses, and mostly involves on-page SEO. This kind of SEO works on each business’s page to ensure it is search engine-friendly, as well as devoid of mistakes that could cost in rankings. Despite recent developments and Google algorithm updates, on-page SEO is still vitally important to ensure you are getting targeted traffic and that your page ranks well. No amount of off-page SEO can overcome the problems caused by a poorly designed webpage!
Formulate a Content Strategy Posting articles at random and hoping to gather enough back-links can only get you this far. To be truly effective in content-based business SEO, you need a really solid content strategy. A good content strategy has a long-term scope, and covers on-site content as well as any articles, press releases and blog posts published on external websites. For an efficient content strategy, there are certain aspects that need to be clearly defined before any piece of content is uploaded anywhere. These aspects include: Deciding on the key theme and main message. Content should always remain relevant and focused on the main message that needs to be conveyed to potential customers. This is important to get genuinely interested traffic. Focus on the main topics. You cannot cover everything with your content, as more tightly focused content carries more impact to search engine rankings. Instead, your business SEO should focus on topics surrounding your main message. Here, peripheral (let alone irrelevant) content can cause more harm than good! Content SEO. Articles, blog posts and website content need certain keywords, tags and metadata to be effective tools. Content should be written with different types of customers in mind. Harness the Power of Social Media (The Right Way!) Social media has been hailed as the Holy Grail of SEO, but to truly take advantage of social media and see a meaningful impact in your business SEO, you need to do it the right way. Random tweets and posts not only do little to promote a small business’ SEO goals, but they may work contrary to its plans. Contrary to popular belief, SEO through social media is neither quick nor “easy”. It requires a well-thought-out plan, which is perfectly in line with the business’s content strategy and main goals. Tweets have to be designed to grab people’s attention, and each Facebook update must be engaging enough for people to share and discuss. It may be hard to get the ball rolling, but. Once mastered, social media can be powerful, as your followers will do a lot of marketing and promotion on your behalf by retweeting, sharing and linking back posts and content they like. Again, this is not an overnight process.
Focus On Long-Term Goals Rather Than Short-Term Benefits Business SEO is much like any other aspect of business management; it requires patience, good planning and focus on long-term goals in order to be successful. Many people believe that the internet represents a separate world, where businesses move at different speeds and overnight success is the norm. There is no real difference, however, from the “offline” world. Any business looking to increase their online presence – and subsequently their sales – through boosting their traffic needs to do so during a span of months, not weeks. Sustainable SEO methods are the key to long-term SEO success. Diversify The internet is an ever-changing landscape of software updates, algorithm changes and market shifts. For that reason, no matter how successful any single SEO method is at any given moment, it is not advisable to depend on just that method for your business SEO. SEO methods rise and fall; the most successful SEO strategy is a diverse strategy that doesn’t put all eggs in one basket. A solid business SEO plan should involve a good content strategy with blog posts, article submissions, and on-page content; a comprehensive social media campaign and can also benefit from the use of services such as AdWords or PPC at the outset to test the assumptions. Remember, not one method is good by itself; synergy is the key here! Enlist Professional Help This is my final piece of advice; business SEO is something that should be taken seriously, as in today’s markets it can make or break a company. Utilising the help of an SEO company or specialist can vastly open up a business’s potential. This is even more important for small businesses, where resources are limited and an external team of people can dedicate themselves just to promote the company’s online presence. Finally, when you are facing competitors in an SEO “battle”, the help of a professional pretty much determines the outcome of it. When SEO efforts are pitted against each other, it is the company with the most apt SEO support that wins!