Small business SEO blog posting
Many small businesses think blogging is too time consuming and provides little benefits and I can certainly understand where they are coming from. The problem of writing a 300 to 500 word past every day or week can often fill business owners with dread. It may be hard work but regular blog posting can be very effective at driving new customers and helping your overall small business SEO.
Tips to get your small business blogging like a SEO master
Target longer tailed keywords. There is very little point using your blog post to target short tailed, highly competitive keywords. By doing this you are likely to end up just repeating the same words and content day after day for little or no results. Target longer tailed keywords that are more likely to convert. Here is a good example of this using a local plumber. Rather that writing a post that will target the word “plumber” write one on boiler breakdowns and how calling a local plumber can be more cost effective than using a national firm. By doing this you will be able to target many keywords and it will be easier to write.
Relevant linking for SEO
As a small local business owner you probably know many other small business men and women in related trades. So when optimising your blog post for SEO place a link to their website within your blog. This will help your potential customer by making easy to find the related businesses they need and is good SEO practice. A good example of this would be a link to a local painter and decorator in a post about burst pipes.
There is still a lot of debate about how many internal links you should use in a blog post. My recommendation would be to use no more than 2 or 3 per post. Use 1 link back to a page you are targeting on your website, and the other 1 or 2 to other relevant blog posts or pages. This will keep customers on your site without it looking like you have linked every other word.
Optimise your images
Adding an image can really make your blog post stand out, but remember that Google can’t see your image and relies on you telling it what the image is about. Always use a full and well written description in the alt tag as well as a title to give more information to your customer.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) should be looked at as a 3 step process, each of these 3 steps is a very distinct part, and you will find that your campaign will be successful unless you complete all three.
The first step in the process is choosing your keywords that you want to target. To do this successfully you should start by putting yourself in your customer’s shoes and think, what would they type in if they were looking to buy the products or services you sell. Once you have some ideas you should look at how competitive the keyword term is, as getting your website to rank on the first page for a very competitive short tailed term such as “photographer” could take many month or even over a year. This would normally be too long to wait for a small business to see a return on their investment in SEO. Alternatively selecting a longer tailed keyword such as “wedding photographer in Newcastle” that has a much lower level of competitiveness could see you rank on the first page within a couple of months. This longer tailed keyword would also be more like to send traffic that you can convert into a sale.
The Second Step is onpage SEO. As far as Google is concerned “Content is King” so making sure that you have high quality, unique and engaging content that supports your chosen keywords is very important. If you don’t mention on your website that you offer “wedding photography packages in Newcastle” Google not see your website as relevant for that search and ranking on the first page will be impossible. The Google Panda update was launched to act as a quality score for the content of your website, so make sure you do not have any duplicate content, headers or titles.
The third step is link building. This part of SEO has probably seen the biggest change of the last couple of years thank to the launch of the Google Penguin Update. Before Penguin link building was all about getting the maximum number of links to your website. It was almost as simple as the more links you had the higher you would rank, but now that has all changed. Back links can now have a positive or negative effect on your ranking depending on how Google sees them. Google is looking for a natural profile in your links, so getting a ton of links one month and then nothing for a few months would be like waving a big red flag at Google. Link quantity is no longer as quality, so a few very high quality links is the way to go. Multi tiered link building is used to build a small number of links from high quality places. The links are then made more valuable by building links to them. This way the number and quality of the link pointing at your website can be controlled. This also has another advantage, Brand management. By building links to your pages such as facebook and twitter you can get them to rank for your company name. This can allow you to capture many of the first 10 places in Google for your name and stop your competitors from hang on your coat tails.