The internet has fundamentally changed how we do business in so many ways, including how willing buyers connect with businesses. As you read this, more than 40,000 people are scouring the internet, looking for services that you may offer. And before the end of today, more than 3.5 billion more searches would have been made.
Millions of people are constantly searching the internet, asking questions and trying to connect with people that have what they need. SEO allows you get a slice of this pie by empowering you with strategies and tools that get new customers trooping in.
But what exactly does small business SEO entail and how can you get it to work for your business? Here’s all you should know.
1)What is Small Business SEO?
Before we delve into the meaning of small business SEO, it makes sense to first crack the nut on what SEO means.
SEO (search engine optimization, in full) means exactly what it sounds like. It involves strategies that help put your business in front of people that are searching for what you do. As the name indicates, SEO has everything to do with search engines.
Search engines, like Google, Bing and Yahoo, are essentially huge directories that point people in the direction of the answers to their questions and the resources they need. They function pretty much like a digital Yellow Pages, only in this case, you’re getting millions of results in only seconds. Search engines do three primary things – they crawl, index and rank.
When you publish your website or a webpage for the first time, the first thing search engines do is “crawl” your page. This means millions of software programs, called “bots”, scour your website and its pages to identify the content and figure out where it fits. Next up, they store and organize the content of your website on a huge server called an “index”. This allows the search engine to quickly produce relevant pages from your website in response to query. Finally, when a user sends a search query through the engine, the bots find, retrieve and rank the most relevant results from the index.
SEO strategies focus on tweaking your website in all the critical places so search engine bots crawl, index and rank your webpages favorably. The goal, for SEO, is to ensure that when these three stages are done, your website performs excellently and puts your business right in front of high quality prospects.
Small business SEO focuses these tactics on the specific needs and opportunities of small businesses. This way, you’re certain that the strategies put in place for your SEO are tailored to the exact circumstances of your business and designed to create results that work for you.
Why is Small Business SEO Important?
As you must have figured out by now, small business SEO has the potential to blow the lid on your business development efforts. It provides businesses with crucial visibility and puts them exactly where they have the best shot at pulling in sales – at the top of Google search results.
Through SEO, small businesses are able to enjoy an advantage that is pretty much impossible in the real world – a level playing field with larger businesses. When it comes to ranking on search engines, it’s not about how much capital or market capitalization you enjoy. It’s simply about who can steal the lion’s share of traffic on Google’s first page. And good quality SEO is guaranteed to get you there.
When SEO is properly done, it works almost like magic. According to data from WebFX, 70% of buyers start their buyer journey with search engines. Even better, 46% of those searching are looking for local businesses, 74% of these want to buy something that same day. Simply put, the more visibility your business gets, the higher your potential for sales.
Finally, good small business SEO allows get out in front of the competition and set your business apart. Because SEO requires you to produce quality content that solves your visitors’ problems, it provides a great opportunity to establish authority and create trust. A perfect combination that unlocks wallets and purses.
Can you do SEO by yourself?
We know SEO will be transformative for your small business. But can you do it yourself?
The general answer is yes. If you have no problems with dedicating the time and resources it takes to learn and implement SEO, there’s no reason why you can’t give it a shot. At its most basic level, SEO is something anybody can do, and as a small business owner, you can become your own SEO expert.
However, it’s important to understand the full picture. While SEO is incredibly effective, it can be maddeningly difficult, not just to implement but also to keep going. This is because, first, SEO takes a lot of time before its results show up. You could write an article and have to wait months for it to show up on the first page. Second, there’s a lot to pay attention to. There are more than 200 indicators that search engines like Google use to crawl, index and rank websites. Good SEO often means paying attention to all, or at least, a majority of these.
Worse, many of these indicators change frequently along with search engine updates and tweaks. This means the sterling SEO job you did today may suddenly become obsolete by tomorrow evening. Not a good thing to look forward to.
So, the bottom line is if you’re willing to put in the work and stay on it, small business SEO can be within your reach. But as many business owners eventually find out, it can be far more beneficial to take advantage of SEO packages for small business provided by digital marketing agencies.
How Small Business SEO Packages Can Help
Although SEO can be labor-intensive, leveraging on small business SEO services can take the strain off you. This way, you get all the advantages of SEO for your small business, without any of the stress.
Plus, by working with an experienced local SEO agency, you can benefit from their experience in the industry in ways that eventually tell. You can avoid all the rookie mistakes that are part and parcel of taking SEO baby steps. And even better, you can immediately start to experience some of the benefits of SEO using industry tips and tricks that experienced agencies can provide.
Granted, digital marketing agencies are not necessarily cheap. But when you compare the potential cost benefits – VALUE – in terms of outsourcing your SEO effort, and the ROI of top notch SEO-led marketing, it translates to a sweet deal for you overall. Plus, these agencies know they’re dealing with small businesses. So you can bet there will be competitive packages designed to fit within your budget.
The Bottom Line
Succeeding with small business SEO takes time. But once you get started, you can look forward to enjoying the results of your efforts for many years to come. Why not get started today?
Reach out to us here at X3 and see how your business stacks up!