Posts Tagged ‘keywords’
One of the biggest mistakes you can make with a small business website is just waiting for traffic to come to you. Why not, if you have a great product? Wrong. If you have a small business website you need to get your market’s attention. That’s not going to happen by simply offering a good product.
Your small business website has two different types of Google rankings. You have your search engine ranking and your page ranking. While they essentially work together to determine your website’s worth, they have a different set of criteria that defines the rank.
Search Engine Ranking
Your search engine ranking is where you end up on a results page after a person conducts a keyword search through Google. Naturally, people are going to click higher up on Google to get what they want. So, it’s important for you to put some effort into your website so you show up higher on Google.
Every web page out there has a score between 0 and 10 (10 being the better score). This score represents how influential your web page is. According to Entrepreneur.com, Google updates page rankings four times every year. There are several things you can do to improve your individual page ranking as well.
If you don’t know your ranking, simply search for your product on Google and see where you end up. You also have the option of finding a web page that shows page ranks – for you and your competitors. If you install Google’s Toolbar, you will have the ability to see each site’s page rank as you visit them.
Here are a few ways to improve your page ranking and your overall search engine rankings:
The more pages out there that link back to your site, the higher you will appear on a search engine, it’s as simple as that. This means you should participate in conversation with others (or even your competitors), and provide a link back to your website. Social Media is another great place to leave links.
Use keywords throughout every webpage, but don’t practice keyword stuffing. If you stuff your content with keywords, Google can actually punish your ranking. Try to use keywords as naturally as possible throughout your web content.
Picture this: You’ve finally set up a website for you small business, you’ve hired the best designer in town…and nothing’s changed. If this sounds like you, you’re pretty much stuck until you gain control over your content.
As a business owner with an online presence, having the authority and access to your web content is crucial to your website’s success. If you want a professional site that successfully represents your company, brings more customers to your business, and increases your revenue stream, there are a few techniques you need to use.
Use a Content Management System
It’s your website. Essentially, it’s another branch of your business. Because it’s not quite as straight forward as your brick-and-mortar location, you might not realize exactly how much work goes into making your website an effective location of commerce.
If you have a content management system, you can easily update content to keep up with the ever-changing consumer demand. You also have control over the keywords, meta-tags, and meta-descriptions that drive traffic from search engines to your site. This is important because keywords are always changing and your website needs to change with them.
Definitely avoid using industry-specific jargon. People are interested in buying your product to solve a specific problem. If you clutter up your content with too much information that is beyond the level of even the most basic customer, they can quickly be put off by it. In the simple words of Jen Udan from ChooseWhat.com:
“If they don’t understand what you’re selling, they won’t buy.”
Keep Your Website Simple
While flashing lights and fun graphics are always cool, they might actually render your site ineffective. People are looking for answers to their questions when they reach your website. If at anytime they feel confused, it doesn’t take much for customers to leave your website and visit a competitor’s.
Make sure everything on your website is clear. Your homepage should have basic information about your product and its benefits. In addition, every page should have a clear call to action. This call to action needs to be identified by you, the business owner. What do you want your browsers to do after reading your information, call you? Subscribe to you? Order from you? These questions need to be answered before writing any content because it should provide the framework in which you write any and all of your information.
If you have a small business website, you need to continuously update your content in order to keep customer attention and quite frankly – give them a reason to buy from you. If your content is starting to look at little stale, it could be time to revamp your website.
An article in Small Business Trends explains a few ways to amp up your content for 2011:
1. Highlight your strengths.
You’ve probably heard it a lot over the past year – marketing is storytelling. Each sentence on your site should be part of a larger effort to tell your brand’s story and lure readers in. To capture people’s attention, your content has to be telling a story that displays your product/company’s strength and tying it back into how it will solve a problem they’ve expressed.
2. Know your competition’s weaknesses.
Part of knowing where your product succeeds means also knowing where your competitor’s product fails. Maybe you deliver superior customer service, maybe it’s a price point issue, or maybe they’re nowhere to be found on social media whereas you’re dominating and ever-so-accessible. Whatever their specific weakness is, make sure you account for it when highlighting your strengths. Don’t do this in a way that speaks badly about your competition, but in a way that highlights something that you do really well.
3. Tighten your calls to action.
One of the most important things you can do for your website is to use your analytics to find your high-traffic/low-conversion pages. You know that a large number of potential customers are landing on these pages, but for some reason, they’re abandoning before they can convert. Why? Often it’s due to too many distractions on the page, or maybe your calls to action aren’t as compelling as they should be
4. Reassess keywords.
Two years ago you used keyword research to help you determine how users were searching for your products and which terms you needed to rank for. You then developed content based on those terms. But have you checked back in to see if you’re still on the right path? By tidying up your keywords you ensure you’re attracting the right people and optimizing your search traffic.
Do you have a business website? Are you frustrated that you have a fantastic business website with every bell and whistle you can think of and yet no one seems to notice it? Many small business owners feel the same way. Thankfully, there’s something you can do to change that.
If you want your small business website to appear higher up on Google so that people will see it and have access to it when searching for your product, you need to have a selection of very deliberate keywords throughout your website. This will give you higher search engine rankings and ultimately – higher traffic.
Here are some guidelines to follow when choosing keywords to include in your website content.
1. Keep it relevant
Every keyword you choose should have relevance to the product or service you provide. The more relevant keywords you have, the higher search engines will rank your site.
2. Conduct research
When choosing keywords, you need to make sure that you are choosing keywords that people are actually searching for. Use Google AdWords to find out if the keywords you are using are actually in demand. This will ensure that you are selling to a market that needs your product.
3. Beware of your competition
When you are researching the possible keywords you should use, you will be able to see how competitive they are. Try specifying and refining your keywords, use phrases instead of just one word, to set yourself apart from your competition.
4. Keyword stuffing
Try to avoid stuffing your content with repetitive keywords. Also, it is important that you have enough keywords on your page to make it count. There is a particular balance that you need to pay attention to. If you have too many keywords, you will be labeled as a spammer. If you don’t have enough, your page will not be considered relevant when people are searching for those keywords.
5. Quality content
Even if you select the best keywords, and insert them perfectly into your content, your efforts will continue to suffer unless you have quality content. Quality content means content that is relevant to your business, targeted towards your target market, and well written.
There are several different marketing strategies you can use. However, for the sake of your small business budget, there are 3 very important strategies that help with organic traffic gain as well as giving your pocket expenses a break.
Step 1: Optimize Your Website
You need a base where people can search for your product, find you, and remain interested enough to order from your website. You truly will not be able to succeed in today’s market if you don’t have a website as your platform for transactions. Your website should in essence, run itself. With quality content, enough information, and the encouragement of feedback and conversation, you have the ability to invite people to learn more about your product or service – and buy it. Your site should have:
- Strong and well researched keywords
- Quality content that actually answers questions
- The use of meta tags and descriptions
- E-commerce capability
Step 2: Build Your Customer Base
Once you have your (quality) website up and running, it’s important to keep those customers coming back to you. One of the most basic marketing strategies you can employ is a subscribers list, or membership option. You can build a base of customers through an email list as one example, if your site has:
- A sign-up option
- A blog
- Newsletters and promotions to send to subscribers
Step 3: Maintenance
Once you have your quality website up and running, and a strong customer base with which you consistently interact, you need to be maintaining your website with fresh content. One great way to do this is to write blogs (daily!) and have them on your website and really anywhere else you can distribute them.
This helps with your exposure, search engine rankings, traffic, and credibility. The reason it helps with credibility is that it shows the initiative you have to answer customer questions and constantly provide fresh information. It shows that you are not all about the transaction, but more about the relationship you have with your customers.