All small and medium-sized business (SMB) owners understand how important digital marketing is to keeping their businesses afloat. It’s a competitive market out there, so SMB owners need to utilise digital marketing to increase their business’s visibility. One part of that is search engine optimisation (SEO). While some SMBs prefer to work on their own SEO strategies, there are plenty of SEO tools out there to help improve a business’s SEO.
SEO can affect how successful a business is and a website’s visibility in the SERPs. To make sure you’re not committing any SEO faux pas, here are the top 5 SEO mistakes made by SMBs.
Not Doing Keyword Research
Keyword research is an integral part of SEO. SMBs need to know who their target audience is and what they are searching for. Having the right keywords will improve a SMB’s ranking in the SERPs.
Many SMBs make the mistake of trying to rank for general search terms and highly competitive keywords, meaning that they will struggle to gain conversions. Rather than going for more generic keywords, SMBs should try to rank for more specific keywords. For example, instead of trying to rank for “greengrocers” and competing with greengrocers worldwide to rank on the first page of the search results, SMBs should try to rank for long-tail keywords, such as “organic greengrocers in Whitby”.
Another mistake made by SMBs is keyword stuffing, which is overusing a specific keyword (or keywords) on a page/site. Search engines, such as Goggle, penalise for this.
Not Tracking SEO Results
How is an SMB owner supposed to know if all their hard work has paid off if they don’t track their results? SMBs should track keywords the they use to make sure their SEO practices are working. By checking their SEO results, SMBs can make sure that their efforts are working, and if not, they can change tactics and get the results they want. Tracking their results is a way to make sure they will get a return on investment (ROI) and improved website performance.
No Off-Page SEO
Many SMBs underestimate the value off-page SEO. This can take the form of social media marketing, reviews, and link building.
Social media marketing is good tool SMBs can use to drive business. A social media presence is essential to reaching more people. SMBs can also target specific people with social media advertising.
Positive customer reviews are imperative. Word-of-moth can attract potential customers, since people want to read about other’s experiences before buying a product or using a service.
To drive traffic even more to their site, a small business should utilise link building. Backlinks and guest posts from other high domain authority sites will help SMBs grow their online presence. When it comes to external links, link quality is important than quantity. If a SMB wants other sites to link to theirs, their website should have high-quality content, which brings me to my next point…
Irrelevant On-Site Content
An SMB needs to build high-quality content first before it will start ranking well in the SERPs. People who look on a small business’s website want to read unique content that contains relevant and useful information, which is why they should keep their content up-to-date. There is no use in a SMB having outdated content on products or services they no longer offer or providing their customers with obsolete information. SMBs should avoid duplicate content as this could affect their site’s ranking in the SERPs.
Another SEO mistake SMBs make is having slow site speed. SMB’s websites need to have a high loading speed otherwise they run the risk of people becoming impatient and leaving the site before they have checked out any of the products or services being offered. Slow loading speeds will get a site penalised by Google.
An SMB’s website should be secure and have an SSL certificate. Clients want to know that their data is protected and insecure websites will rank lower in the SERPs.
An SMB should have a responsive website, which includes making it mobile-friendly. Since many people use the internet on their mobile phones, it’s imperative that a SMB’s website is easy to navigate for mobile users.
Now that you know the top mistakes made by SMBs, you can improve your SEO to avoid being penalised by Google and to rank better in the SERPs. Having good SEO will help you to drive traffic to your small or medium-sized business and generate more leads. We wish you the best of luck with growing your business.
Image Credits: NisonCo PR and SEO