Search engine optimization plays an integral role in attracting prospective customers your website. With companies of all sizes pulling out all the stops when it comes to SEO, failing to follow your competitors’ example is practically guaranteed to result in a noticeable lack of web traffic. Lest you think SEO success is strictly the domain of major conglomerates, there are several effective ways smaller-scale companies can grab the attention of popular search engines. Small business owners eager to make search engine optimization work for their respective companies would do well the heed the following tips.
Focus on Mid-Tail Search Terms
When looking for the right search terms, many small businesses choose to focus on long-tail terms – and frankly, it isn’t difficult to see why. With larger companies eating up the most popular short-tail terms, smaller organizations see the utilization of long-tail terms as their best chance at capturing Google’s attention. Unfortunately, when entering search criteria, most Internet users don’t use long-tail terms unless they’re looking for something highly specialized. That being the case, small businesses stand to benefit from sticking to mid-tail terms – i.e., search terms made up of six to 10 words. As Search Engine Land reports, mid-tail terms have a proven propensity for generating higher visitor numbers.
Create Content That’s Worthwhile to the Reader
It’s pretty obvious when a piece of content has been written for the sole purpose of grabbing the attention of Google. Blog posts and feature articles that are chockfull of unnaturally-inserted keywords and meta tags are of no conceivable use to the people who visit your website. While content of this nature may help attract visitors in the short term, few – if any – of these individuals are likely to stick around after realizing that your content is created for bots instead of people. Furthermore, many popular search engines – most notably Bing and Google – are taking a hard line against lackluster, bot-targeted content. This isn’t to say your content shouldn’t contain relevant keywords and meta tags – they just need to be inserted in a natural fashion. Additionally, the content you create should aim to inform, educate and promote discussion, not lure visitors to your site under false pretenses. If your content is particularly informative, visitors may even post links to it on their personal websites – which can also improve your search ranking.
If you’ve only recently entered the fray, it’s important to understand that even the best SEO efforts won’t produce immediate results. This is why small businesses are urged to view search engine optimization as a long-term game instead of something that will turn their fortunes around overnight. In the best of scenarios, a company won’t see any signs of a strategy’s success or failure for several months. With this in mind, don’t abandon a certain strategy – or set of strategies – in response to a lack of instantaneous success.
Search engines can prove instrumental in setting businesses up with prospective clients. However, in order to increase your exposure on the search engine scene, you’ll need to take measures to tweak your site and its content. Fortunately, when it comes to search engine optimization, larger companies don’t automatically have a leg up. Regardless of your business’s size, the previously-discussed strategies can earn you the attention of prominent search engines – as well as the people who depend on them.