What do small business SEO packages include? X3 Marketing Group

What Do Small Business SEO Packages Include?

How to find the best digital marketing and small business SEO packages

What should small business SEO packages include? || X3 Marketing Group

Let’s be honest here: how many of you business owners or decision makers reading this have looked at digital marketing and SEO strategies with this look on your face? I’m betting right around ALL of you.

In 2021, and online marketing strategy is an absolutely must-have piece of making  sure that your business is thriving by driving emails, phone calls and other engagement that begins with search engines and social media platforms. But where do you begin?

Does my small business NEED SEO? || X3 Marketing Group

First, if you’ve gotten this far you probably already have a website. You probably also know that simply having a website with no monthly traffic being driven to it is something like having a billboard in the middle of the desert. We get into that a bit more in our article, “Do I need a business website in 2021?“.

Now that you’ve gotten your shiny new website and you want some traffic coming to it to build your business, you’ve probably looked at which direction you want to go with your digital marketing. You can go the digital advertising direction and pay for each click – which is very effective (and which we also do for our clients). Today though, we’re going to really focus on the key elements of small business SEO packages and what you should expect to spend for your monthly budget.

SMALL BUSINESS SEO PACKAGES INCLUDE:

  • Keyword Mapping and Research
  • Business-Specific SEO Strategy
  • Website Optimization
  • Backlinks Strategy
  • Regular, Detailed Reporting
  • Customer Service

Keyword Mapping and Research

You probably have a decent idea of what a keyword is and what relevant keywords you’d like your business website to be found for by prospective clients using search engines. However, there are a couple of things we should point out here:

1. YOU are not your potential client. As a business owner, you are an expert and as such, your knowledge and understanding of what YOU would type into a search engine versus what a prospective customer would search for could possibly be VERY different.

For instance, if you’re a roofer in Colorado you surely know about all kinds of roofing technologies like Class 4 shingles, EPDM and fluid-applied coatings. However, if you’re simply someone who needs to have their roof replaced because of a hail storm, you’re simply going to search for something akin to “best roof replacement near me”. We take these things into account to make sure that the keyword rankings we’re aiming for are backed by specific needs of customers.

2. Competitive keywords deserve constant attention and ongoing work. In 2020, Google’s Algorithm had 12 major updates and HUNDREDS of smaller updates that took place daily. As such, your SEO company should be actively working on strategy with you and other SEO clients to actively pursue the best strategy.

Obviously, national SEO packages aren’t necessary for most local businesses but it is important to look at the geography of your business and how it affects how to generate keyword lists that are most effective for your business.

Regardless of the size of our client’s businesses, we do all the in-depth research necessary to make sure that the keyword strategy we deploy will bring search ranking, and website traffic on an ongoing basis.

Business-Specific SEO Strategy

The other day a potential client of ours shared with us their monthly reports from their current business SEO agency. To be completely transparent while SEO content was part of the report, much of it focused on digital advertising (pay-per-click, PPC, Google Ads, etc.). What was astounding to us was that they had clearly not taken the time to considered the actual business to generate keyword list ideas or strategy. They’d simply set the Google Keyword Planner tool to “broad match” (which pulls in keywords that are even distantly linked to a category and often results in things that have no real association with business clients).

At X3 Marketing Group, it’s our job to consider things like business goals, budgets, geography, ideal customer profiles and an almost infinite list of other aspects which business partners hold as vital aspects of their specific business. Business SEO solutions are not a cookie-cutter solution and each client should have their digital marketing agency as their partner rather than simply a mercenary.

Website Optimization

There are a ton of free website builders out there but the old adage of, “You get what you pay for.” certainly holds true for most of them. Having a website is fine because it gives a business some presence online but for the most effective SEO marketing, any good digital marketing agency worth their salt will advise you to make sure the nuts & bolts of your website are just as well thought out as your content writing and content optimization.

Right out of the gate, your SEO company should make sure that your site speed is addressed. Google themselves have explicitly stated that page speed affects rank not only in organic traffic as a result of search engine optimization but also in paid search and Google Ads. Anything over about 1.68 seconds of page loading speed is unlikely to ever find itself on first page search results (outside of business name searches).

Looking back at the keyword mapping section above, something else important to consider is how the actual structure of your website is handled. Think about it like this:

If you walk into the grocery store and everything you need is there as always, but it’s in a giant pile on the floor. Imagine how long it would take you to wade through the mess to find anything specific!

Now imagine the same grocery store but it’s as normal. Well-organized aisles which are clearly labeled. Now, you’ll still have to wait for that guy standing in the middle of the aisle choosing one of the 56 varieties of peanut butter available but at least you’ll be able to find everything.

If your website isn’t well organized, a visitor looking for quality content won’t be able to find it. They’ll “bounce” quickly and this will affect your Google rankings because they’re paying attention to how long people stay on your site and pages. This is also known as the “bounce rate”.

There are many other aspects of website optimization for good SEO and we’re constantly working to make sure that our client’s results reflect every advantage we can give them.

Backlinks Strategy

What the heck is a backlink? Simply put, a backlink is a link from one website to another. In this way, site A linking out to site B is putting their virtual trust or credit in site B. For instance, we trust Google’s mobile speed tool so we, at X3 Marketing Group are going to give a link to it HERE. With that, we’ve indicated a certain amount of trust.

What do small business SEO packages include? X3 Marketing Group

Now that you understand what a backlink is, it’s important to know that now all backlinks “weigh” the same. High-quality, relevant backlinks can be considered in several different ways.

First, do Google and other search engines have general trust in the outbound site? Building that sort of trust take a lot of time and expert content creation, inbound backlinks of their own and many other factors that drive organic search traffic.

Second, is the outbound-linking website important to a specific industry? For instance, one of our clients is CCG Roofing (🤏🏻 Notice the backlink to CCG!) based here in Northern Colorado. Being that they’re in the extremely competitive roofing industry, if the Colorado Roofing Association themselves links to CCG, that is a much more important than a link from Brandon’s Cat Blog (which doesn’t exist because I’m allergic to cats) whose roof CCG just replaced.

Building authoritative backlinks is one of, if not THE most difficult and time-consuming parts of a good SEO campaign. Part of it also involves citation campaigns which aren’t as specific as, “Hey, go check out Brandon’s Cat Blog! [LINK]”. Rather, they’re simply citing a business – mostly with a link –  with included NAP (Name, Address, Phone) information. This is important, especially when done through authority sites. Think of it as them giving your business a tiny bit of their good juju with each link which, in turn, builds your own good juju.

Regular, Detailed Reporting

Even the most solid SEO strategy in the world does not bring world-changing traffic to your website overnight. For the first 1-3 months a good digital marketing company like X3 Marketing Group will be handling much of the aspects we’ve covered above as foundational pieces of great business SEO plans. After the first month, you may see some initial results showing in reporting although those first 2-4 months of results are more often than not the result of page indexing.

At X3 Marketing Group, trust, results and clarity are the cornerstone of what we do. As such, being able to provide our clients not simply with some 8-page report which you’re left to interpret on your own. While we do provide weekly and monthly reports as well as longer-term quarterly reports, the X3 Marketing dashboard gives our clients the ability to see unfiltered data so they can see exactly where their money is going.

Digital marketing strategy can be a very intimidating world and we believe it’s part of our job to pull back the curtain on all that jargon and mystery. In the SEO world, organic search traffic is what we’re looking for and since other people in your industry are working to beat you in organic search results, we also work hard to monitor competitors to give our clients great results.

Customer Service

One of the most important things we see from clients looking for great business SEO services is next-level customer service. At X3 Marketing Group, we have an in-stone meeting with our clients every 6 weeks at the very least. Understanding that SEO costs can be a significant piece of budget for those people means that it is our job to be able to show them how their online marketing campaign is working for them.

At X3, making sure that popular search engines find your business above your competition is paramount. Every single keyword matters to being found in organic search but also on business listing and increasingly important platforms like Google Maps. Our team works hand-in-hand with yours to help you dominate your competition online.

X3 Marketing Group: Do I need a business website in 2021?

Do I Need A Business Website in 2021?

We’re going to get into the “Why?” of this question below but first, let’s get the main answer out of the way:

Yes, your small business definitely needs a website. And it needs it yesterday. 84% of today’s consumers think a website makes your business more credible than companies who only have social media profiles (themeisle.com). On top of that, 72% of consumers that perform a local search visit a store within 5 miles of their current location.

Does my small business need a website?

Does my small business need a website?

What's the best website builder for small business?

What’s the best website builder for small business?

How about Google My Business websites?

How about Google My Business websites?

What about those "Free" website builders?

What about those “Free” website builders?

Does my small business need a website?

As we said unequivocally above, yes. 100%. Why though? Frankly, it’s all about legitimacy and appearing above your competitors in Google Search. By the end of 2019, 97% of consumers looking for a local business did so by using a search engine and 91% of the time, that search engine is Google.

X3 Marketing Group Mobile and Digital Marketing

When we search for a local business – let’s take a mechanic in Northglenn, Colorado where our office is, for example – we’re looking for a business that is close by so we don’t spend a huge amount of our day driving to and from and we also want a mechanic who comes recommended by our neighbors and people we know.

If we search for this mechanic and there is simply a Google My Business listing which hasn’t been “claimed” by the business owner and whose information is incorrect and whose phone number is incorrect. Out of the gate, that business is losing credibility and frustrating a potential customer. In this scenario, let’s say that the customer keeps looking for a way to get in touch with the mechanic and they go digging for a website. If no website exists, the auto shop has almost certainly lost that potential customer.

When we, as an agency that provides local SEO services, work with a client the very first thing we look at is whether that small business has a website where we can drive traffic using one of our strategic SEO packages or digital advertising services. If you don’t have a website to accompany your marketing efforts, it will affect all of your online marketing plans and no amount of customer service can help if no customers can find your otherwise successful business online.

As a final point, a full 80% of online search engine usage takes place on a mobile device. If you don’t have a site at all, you’re not going to show up on mobile either.

What’s the best website builder for small business?

We’ve certainly covered this in other X3 Marketing Group articles but since HOW your website is built is almost as important as having a website at all, we’ll touch on it again. Here are some of the most popular ways to build a small business website ranging from “Free” to quite expensive, custom website builds:

Weebly: This is a reasonable way to just get an online presence but it’s extremely limited in its ability to generate leads for heating and air conditioning repair and service (or any other leads for that matter). Not good for SEO.
Wix: Similar to Weebly in that it’s a decent stop-gap while your “big kid” website is under construction with X3 (#shamelessplug). Generally speaking, there’s quite a bit of “you-get-what-you-pay-for” when it comes to online marketing and there are challenges with Wix which would make it less than ideal for reaching and engaging a loyal customer base through SEO.
Squarespace: While it’s still missing some of the SEO tools of other platforms, Squarespace is known for visually appealing websites that incorporate beautiful images on a bit of a budget. Easy to work with, it requires almost none of the technical skills that may give you pause.
WordPress: Open source and very customizable, WordPress is primarily what we build on (ahem) and makes for a solid solution. There is a world of plugins by third-party developers to make WordPress very customizable to your needs. Can be a bit sluggish from time to time if not properly optimized.
Custom: There are a couple of very important things to consider when looking at a fully custom coded website; 1. the cost will likely be significantly more than other platforms and 2. the development time will certainly be longer (typically about double) than most estimates given at the outset of a project. On the other hand, a fully-custom Python build, for example, can be fast, powerful and do pretty much everything a company of any size could need (and pay for).
In order for an agency like X3 Marketing Group to bring a small business the best local SEO services as well as giving the most bang-for-your-buck with pay-per-click and other other digital marketing and advertising methods, your website needs needs to be at the forefront of marketing efforts to effectively capitalize on a wide range of the available marketing tools.
X3 Marketing Group: Squarespace
X3 Marketing Group: Weebly

X3 Marketing Group: Wix

X3 Marketing Group: WordPress

What about Google Sites?

Speaking frankly, we wouldn’t consider Google Sites (Google My Business free websites) a true “website builder”. It can be a temporary placeholder while your website is under construction but its functionality is very limited and while it may answer basic questions your perspective customers may have, customer behavior tells use that a well-organized and visually appealing website is what causes a prospective customer to reach out. Google sites simply don’t have enough functionality.

X3 Marketing Group: Google Sites

Additionally, Google sites don’t offer the ability to have a custom domain – this means you don’t truly have your own .COM. Google’s sites instead have a long URL string beginning with “sites.google.com/yournamehere”. This means that any traffic you get isn’t owned by your business and things like social media channels will reflect this. At the outset of this article, we talked about the credibility factor of having a website and not having your own URL is a big no-no in the world of online marketing.

What about a free website builder?

We touched on this above when talking about some of the types of website builders available but we’ll expand a bit more here. Free website builders are certainly a tempting option – especially for those small businesses who are starting out and simply need a web presence. These free options often act as the hosting provider, WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) website editor and, to some degree, design company.
Most free website builders will give you some templates from which to select your website layout and even access to royalty-free, high-quality images to use. You can include functionality like a contact form. With some free website builders you can have your own custom domain with whatever domain extension you’d like (.com, .net, .tv, .co, etc.) but others will restrict your URL to being a subdirectory or subdomain of their site (like the sites.google.com/yournamehere mentioned above).

Another drawback of these free website builders is that they often require their own branding to remain on YOUR site. This is akin to handing someone your business card and it having “Kinko’s!” printed across the top.

As a marketing tool, your website helps establish and, over time, build credibility. It give people who have found you through and online review a place to click to to find out more about your business success. If it appears unprofessional and/or isn’t engaging, potential customers will leave and look elsewhere.

When it comes to websites, there are widely varying degrees of “you-get-what-you-pay-for” for sure but few (if any) digital marketing professionals would agree that a “free” website is much more than a placeholder while you grown-up site is being built.

X3 Digital Marketing Google My Business, Local SEO, Paid advertising experts

10 Ways To Optimize Google My Business Right Now

Local SEO is fundamental to small business organizations that work on a local, instead of a general level. While public SEO moves in the direction of driving clicks the nation over, local SEO organizes showing up on SERPs (Search Engine Results Pages) in a particular area. Tying all of these things together is Google My Business. This system relies on showcasing your business through images, products, and marketing specifically to local leads and clients.
Growing your local SEO implies more site traffic, leads, and growth since the methods are more applicable to nearby clients’ base. By using Google My Business, a local business can compete head-to-head with huge, national companies with much deeper pockets. By working on specific local SEO tasks, you can kill the upside of more notable brands who are much more likely to market catchphrases and national recognition rather than focusing on the visibility of their local business listing.

Further, 46% of all search traffic is looking for a local business listing [SOURCE]. Without local SEO, your business could be missing out on a lot of traffic.

With all that in mind, here are the
Ten ways to optimize Google My Business for the best local SEO.

Global spending on digital marketing nears $100 billion: study

Step 1: Get a Google My Business Account

1. Get a Google My Business Account

Improving your Google posting (otherwise known as your Business Profile) is probably the best way to rank higher on Google Maps to gain visibility in Google Search nearby outcomes. To get access to your Business Profile to make these improvements you first need a Google My Business account related with that profile. When you give the entirety of the mentioned data in your Google My Business account dashboard, the whole of that data will be added to your Business Profile, which shows up in Google Search nearby outcomes, the Google Search Knowledge Panel Google Maps.

To improve your Business Profile on Google, make sure that you:

  • Create a Google My Business account and confirm responsibility for business (also known as “claiming” a business)
  • Provide precise and exceptional data including the correct address and phone number as well as hours of operation.
  • Include your logo, how long you’ve been in business, how your service sets your business apart, the products or services you sell, and a lot of pictures (inside and outside of your business as well as projects)
  • Encourage your clients to leave a review on your business listing
  • Respond earnestly and quickly to client reviews – even when it comes to negative reviews
  • Publish posts (reporting items, occasions, and special offers) to your Business Profile through the Google My Business dashboard.

Step 2: Create a detailed and CTA-driving description

2. Create a detailed and CTA-driving description

The description of your business that you add should be clear and should make potential customers want to reach out to you. If you’re not familiar with the internet parlance of “CTA” that means, “call-to-action” and means that you are using words in the form of instructions or outright requests to take action. The most straightforward illustration of a CTA is something like, “Buy now!” or “Give us a call to find out more!”.

The more information you can give potential customers, the better. You can tell your crowd what’s in store when they contact you or visit your location. You can also help make sure that a customer who’s not really looking for your business (we call these, “tire-kickers”) doesn’t waste your time. While it is a must that your Google My Business profile makes it obvious that you’re an expert in your field, it’s also important to let customers know – especially those who find your business in local search rankings – that you’d love to talk to them. Let that person know through your CTA’s that they can stop by or – especially during the days of COVID-19 – they can pick up the phone and speak to an actual person.

Step 3: 3. Choose the right business category

3. Choose the right business category

Categories let potential customers know what you do and what you offer. Being clear about this means that the combination of a local Google search and map results can inform shoppers of exactly what you do and how close you are to them.

For instance, if your primary classification is “Pizza café,” Google may show your business in somebody’s local search items when they look for “Cafés,” “Italian eateries,” or “Pizza.” Your class is only one of the numerous variables that can influence your local ranking on Google. Get familiar with local search ranking and how specific categories and sub-categories can affect your business.

Step 4: 4. Select the right attributes for your business

4. Select the right attributes for your business

Google My Business attributes are probably the most important details about your business that show up on your Google My Business posting and in other local business listings. They demonstrate things like payment options, amenities, accessibility, and other highlights including COVID-19 accommodations and availability.

Google My Business attributes are essential to customers, and they are critical to Google in ensuring the correct SERPs are delivered. It is a speedy and compelling path for a business owner to convey what might be essential to a customer.

Step 5: Add photos to your Google My Business listing

5. Add Photos

When it comes to local search engine rankings, there are a lot of factors which can not only affect your ranking, but also whether or not a person clicks on the link to your website above others. Probably one of the most important – especially when a business has a very visual product or service (we’re looking at you, roofing companies!) is photographs and this is where adding photos to Google My Business comes in.

In Google’s eyes, adding photos helps to show that your business is real – especially when you include pictures of your staff. It helps show off a bit of your business’ character and helps increase trust. It’s a bit surprising that Google My Business puts so much weight into pictures but, with how much rich media content adds to other platforms, it should be surprising.

Having a few pertinent pictures in your posting will help your business stand apart from the group, accomplish higher rankings, and stand out online.


CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED WITH GOOGLE MY BUSINESS!

Step 6: 6. Get clients to leave Google My Business reviews

6. Get clients to leave Google My Business reviews

Reviews on Google (among other online reviews) give essential data about your business to both you and your clients. Business reviews show up close to your posting in Google Maps and search and help your business stand apart on Google.

Asking existing clients for a review of your business is simple by sending them a short URL to visit. To get reviews on Google, urge your clients to get the message out about your business by following these prescribed procedures:

Remind your clients to leave reviews. Seriously. Be explicit and know that happy clients are often happy to share their experience. Tell them that it’s easy, fast and straightforward to leave business reviews on mobile phone or regular computer.
When a client leaves a review, respond to them. Your clients will see that your business values their opinion, and potentially leave more reviews later on. However, don’t think that all reviews are going to be good! If a customer has a less-than-great experience (ESPECIALLY if this is the case) and leaves you a bad review, you should use your response as an opportunity to find a resolution. This will show that client – and others who read that review – your professionalism and flexibility.
Check your business, so your data is qualified to show up on Maps, Search, and other Google administrations. Just confirmed organizations could react to reviews. Figure out how to verify your business.

Step 7: 7. Post to your Google My Business profile regularly

7. Post to your Google My Business profile regularly

At the very least, you should post on Google My Business at regular intervals.

A lot of businesses post once every day and have seen excellent outcomes and improved rankings. In fact, Google actually seems to defer strongly to companies that use Google’s tools (including Google My Business) frequently.

In any case, remember that the latest Google post shows unmistakably in a search, so if there is some important information or deal that you need individuals to see, it very well may be a smart thought not to have another post for the following six days. That way, that post won’t be covered behind the more up to date posts until you’re ready. Remember this when sorting out how frequently to post to Google My Business is ideal for you.

Step 8: Ask questions your clients might ask and then answer them

8. Ask questions your clients might ask and then answer them

This may seem like an odd thing to do but, if you’ve been a good business owner – and we know that businesses owned by people who aren’t fail quickly – you’ve certainly heard more than your fair share of customer questions. So, with those questions now being typed into mobile searches, local searches, searches in your zip code, etc, you have a golden opportunity to help guide potential customers to the right answers.

For instance, if you’re a pizza restaurant, you can use Google My Business to post something like:

“Does Bob’s Pizzeria have outdoor seating? Yes, yes we do! Bob’s Pizzeria has a beautiful patio with heaters for when the weather gets a bit colder. Come on in and check it out!”

Not only can this act as a valuable tool for businesses but it also serves to answer specific questions about your location which people are likely already wondering about. It also is a factor in local search engine optimization (local SEO) which search engines look for.

Things like this can be even more important during the days of COVID-19 when people are sometimes reluctant to simply find a nearby location. They want to know if a business is open, if they have outdoor seating and if they have accommodation for cleanliness measures. People don’t want to waste their time simply heading to a businesses address only to find out that they can’t – in our Pizzeria example – eat there.

Step 9: Add your products and services

9. Add your products and services

The Product and Service Editor in Google My Business is all businesses but caters more to small to medium-sized organizations. Aside from a couple of verticals, most businesses can utilize the Product and services Editor to showcase their products to potential clients.

How it works:

Recently updated items and categories show first in the Product Catalog. To feature an item, make a minor update to carry it to the highest point on the list.
To ensure all clients utilize search, check your items and add your them through the products tab in your Google My Business dashboard.
Retail vendors can use the Product Editor to transfer items to their Business Profile. To look more closely at the products you offer, clients can tap the items in your Product Catalog and product posts.
Once again, this is an opportunity to use your product posts to drive people to either buy online or to visit your business location. Remember that Google tries to prioritize local businesses above larger, national companies who are actually located near a particular location. For instance, in our earlier example of of Bob’s Pizzeria, a person may be searching for a local pizza restaurant and a national competitor miles away from their location isn’t what they want. In this way, local businesses can compete by using their local nature and their address relative to local search optimization to dominate the big boys.

Step 10: Make regular updates to your Google My Business profile including offers and promotions

10. Maintain your Google My Business profile with regular updates
Regular updates are essential to ensure that your Google my Business profile does not become out of date or stale compared to its competitors.

One suggestion that we have is to set one (or more) day a week to add content to your Google My Business profile as well as other local citations. Be sure you’re using local keywords (example: Roofing companies in Fort Collins CO) which search engines can use to establish local intent. Use these updates to share company promotions and new industry features.

If you do not maintain your Google My Business profile regularly with updates, your competitors will surpass you, and your business may lose revenue.

The Bottom Line
While we hesitate to say too broadly that consumers have become “smarter” they have become smarter consumers when it comes to searching various links for more information about a particular product or business. It’s not enough to just be a local business in a certain category – you have to set yourself apart.

Now, the “word of mouth” marketing thing is something which a ton of businesses point to as their only method or marketing. While that is certainly one of the MOST powerful small business marketing tools, it’s also an incomplete pathway to a new customer these days. In fact, if “Jenny” recommends a mechanic to someone, that someone searches for that business online 68% of the time. On top of that, if that business doesn’t have any online reviews or if their website is lackluster (or non-existent) then potential customers are extremely likely to look elsewhere.

At X3, a huge part of what we do for our clients is help them build out many different types of citations and perhaps the biggest these days is Google My Business. So, if you’ve gotten this far and you’re shaking your head saying, “I do NOT want to mess with all this stuff!” then you need to either pick up the phone and call us or CLICK HERE to send us a message. We want to help your business DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE.

Curious to see how small business from X3 can hep you DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE? Get in touch!

14 + 7 = 

X3 Small Business SEO Packages

Small Business SEO Packages; Finding The Right One

Small business SEO. Is it worth it?

Let’s be honest, COVID-19 has affected just about every aspect of our lives. From how we go “out” to eat to how we shop, consumers are going online to search for what they need more than ever. Simultaneously, businesses are having to adapt how their existing and potential clients find them. Gone are the days of relying on radio, word-of-mouth marketing or newspapers. Local search engine optimization (aka, local SEO and small business SEO packages), Google My Business, local citations and business listings, digital advertising and an entire suite of SEO services related to digital marketing is how we shop.

Today we’re going to take a look at how a local SEO package can turn just a website visitor into a customer and how important it is for a business to be relevant in the digital space. But first, do the goals of a well thought out SEO strategy make it worth the cost?

Global spending on digital marketing nears $100 billion: study

Yes and no. I met a potential customer a couple of years ago in the home services space. More specifically, his company provided electricians, plumbers, heating and air conditioning services. As part of his digital marketing strategy, he was using Google PPC (pay-per-click) advertising – which is definitely one of the services that X3 provides and includes in the online marketing strategy for many of our customers. His spend with Google was about $6,000 per month which is a healthy spend and was paying for itself with a roughly 1:1 direct return on investment. Where he lost money however, was in how he was managing his PPC campaigns.

X3: Small business SEO. Is it worth it?

This gentleman was doing all of the keyword research, competitor analysis, conversion goals, and other work to run his campaigns all on his own which is quite common among many small business owners. When I asked him how many hours a week he spent managing his ads, he told me about 10 hours per week (40 hours per month for those playing along). I then asked him what his hourly rate was for he and his employees, he told me it was a baseline of $100 per hour. This means that he was taking an additional $4000 in his own time and adding it to his cost each month. When you add to that the fact that he had to learn all of the management and tools to run his campaigns, he’s probably coming out in the negative.

Now, I know that I’m talking about a pay-per-click strategy here but much of the keyword research is the same as it is with search engine optimization (SEO). At X3, it’s our job to know what Google is looking for and to pay attention to key algorithm and strategy updates. While PPC or small business SEO packages certainly aren’t free, the knowledge which an agency like ours holds means that we know how to attract the “eyes”  or major search engines and bring the digital customer to your door.

What do small business SEO packages include?

At X3 we focus on value because cost – as all good small business owners know – is a terrible indicator of the positive return a service brings. With that in mind, let’s take a look at just what one of X3’s small business SEO packages might include

– Keyword Strategy

This would include a set of relevant keywords to the business in question. With local organic search being the primary focus of our imaginary small business, these keywords would need to tightly define how a business would like to be found in local search which would result in not just “tire kicker” leads but leads which are intent on buying their product or service.

– On Page Optimization

This can include a wide variety of things which all fall under established (and shifting) guidelines. To name a few: site map, keyword research, code validation, meta & title tags and image & video optimization to name a few. Google webmaster guidelines help to define these and every single piece of the puzzle can help result in more organic traffic.

– Link Building

If me and 99 of my closest friends were at a bar (minus the ridiculous COVID-19 thing) and someone said, “Hey everyone! Can you recommend a good plumber?” and five of us pointed at Bob of Bob’s plumbing, we would be creating what amounts to a real-world backlink. We are using our social proof to create a link to Bob. When it comes to building high quality backlinks on the internet, the same principle holds true for a great SEO strategy. A link for Bob’s plumbing on a local business directory like a chamber of commerce helps to increase Bob’s search engine rankings by telling potential customers that his business is trusted.

X3: What do small business SEO packages include?

– Content Marketing

There is a saying in the SEO marketing world: “Content is king”. To a very large degree this holds true. When we refer to content creation what we’re primarily talking about are additional pages on a website which may describe services and the like. We’re also speaking of blog posts like the one you’re reading now. Adding content to a website on a consistent, ongoing basis is one of the biggest factors in small business SEO and can even result in potential customers seeing links to your site on social media outlets.

Should we hire an SEO agency or try to handle search engine optimization on my own?

I like to use this analogy a lot: Can I replace my own roof? Absolutely. I can go on any number of instructional websites (including YouTube) and find out exactly what I need to do; what supplies and tools to buy, where to buy them and how to do the installation. In fact, I could probably do all of that for less money than hiring a roofer. However, just looking at the amount of time it would take for me to learn all of that, not to mention the inevitable mistakes would put me so far behind in terms of being cost effective that I would be MUCH better off hiring a professional.

Webmaster Guidelines  |  Google Search Central  |  Google Developers

So back to the original question: Should we hire and SEO agency or try to handle it on your own? First, no, you shouldn’t hire an agency, you should hire X3. Period.

Hiring an SEO firm (ahem – X3 – ahem) means you’re hiring someone who is used to providing business SEO services. We are SEO experts in each aspect of the game. This includes content marketing, Technical SEO, Google algorithm updates, on and off page optimization, content analysis just to name a few.

I’ll go back to an earlier point here as well; if you had a machine which you could put a dollar into and get 2 back, you’d be camped out in front of that machine all day long. That’s what happens when you work with SEO professional like us at X3. We do everything we can to make sure your search ranking outstrips the other guys, even in highly competitive industries which includes SEO for roofers in Colorado where there are over 5,000 licensed roofers to compete with. Our small business SEO packages are designed to make you dominate your competition online while simultaneously bring you trust, results and clarity.

X3: Small business SEO. Is it worth it?
Additionally, our marketing services don’t end there. We’ll cover this in another article coming up but our team has developed an amazing long term strategy which brings all avenues of generating business with your target audience to fruition. We engage our SEO team in addition to social media marketing, retargeting and cross-populating targeting and reviews to increase your conversion rates in local and national markets.

The Bottom Line

At X3 we are SEO professionals. It is our job to maximize your marketing budget so your digital marketing efforts can turn search engines into that put-one-in-get-two-back money machine I mentioned earlier. It’s also our job to show you how your money is being spent and provide the trust, results and clarity so you can account for each dollar and track conversion goals to see that money grow. Let’s talk.

Curious to see how small business from X3 can hep you DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE? Get in touch!

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X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

Regardless of whether you own a brick and mortar store or a purely online business, chances are that you only want one thing – customers that bring in sales. But while small businesses have evolved tons of tactics to get this done, very few understand or utilize the power of SEO.

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.

X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

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.

READ MORE: LOCAL SEO vs. WORD OF MOUTH

 

X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

 

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.

 

X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

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.

X3: What is Small Business SEO and Why is it Important for Your Business?

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!

Curious to see how small business from X3 can hep you DOMINATE YOUR COMPETITION ONLINE? Get in touch!

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