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24 Top SEO Tips and Tricks for Small Businesses

Jan 20, 2023 |   24 SEO tips for small businesses

For small businesses, implementing an SEO strategy may seem daunting and time-consuming. But investing your resources in SEO can help you get better ROI over a long period. An SEO analyst’s role isn’t confined to keyword research alone but needs to pay attention to many details. 

Is SEO important for small businesses?

The answer is YES.

The whole idea of launching a website is to get visitors and generate leads. For which you need to enhance your online presence. SEO can make it possible by helping your site climb up in search results. To get started, we have compiled 24 SEO tips for small business owners.

1. Plan SEO roadmap and content strategy in advance

As the proverb says, a good beginning is half done; develop an SEO strategy before website designing. Google takes time to crawl and understand new websites. Experts refer to the six to eight months after launching as ‘sandbox. It is like a short probation period Google imposes on new domains to check if the website can meet the standards.

It is better to create a checklist for SEO rather than making SEO tweaks or relaunching a new website. Determine the URL structure, site structure, target seed keywords, install necessary analytical tools, and many other essential factors.

Along with an SEO road map, prepare a content calendar, as most of its activities revolve around content. Align your content strategy with SEO to get better results.

2. Optimize meta tag and description.

Meta tags are short description that tells Google how to view a page and place it in the search engine. They are a part of the website’s HTML code and ensure how your website is displayed on different devices. 

Meta description, along with the title tag, will be displayed on the SERP. So, it is essential to include marketing details and inform viewers what they can get from the particular page to make it clickable.

Avoid duplication in meta tags. They should be short, and the character count should not exceed 160 characters. You should include the primary keyword in the meta tags if you want to increase your chances of ranking. 

3. Set up Google My Business (GMB) profile

Google My Business is a beneficial feature of local SEO for small businesses to enhance your visibility. It will give you a greater advantage in Google search, Google maps, and other Google services. Using the GMB, you can share photos, and videos, list out products and allow users for online bookings or orders.

If you still need to create your GMB profile, create it now by visiting Google My Business page. Enter your business name and email ID, choose a category, add location, enter business contact details and write a description with keywords. It is free and affordable SEO for small businesses.

4. Identify keyword gap

Keyword research has been the primary role of SEO professionals for long days. But exploring new opportunities for enhancing organic reach is necessary.

Do competitor research and find what keywords they have covered. Spot the weak and missing keywords and create or recreate existing content. The keywords you choose must be relevant and have less competition but must produce a high value for your site.

If you are in look for keyword research tools, here is a list of 7 to select from. 

5. Build backlinks

Backlinks are essential to push your site to rank higher and gain authority in the search engine. They are incoming hyperlinks to your website from other websites.

When there are many backlins linking back to a landing page or blog, search engine marks it as a good sign for authority and will start trusting your site. And it is proven that pages with more backlinks tend to gain higher ranks. This can help you widen your organic reach.

Generate more informative full-content link infographics, ebooks, blogs, and other materials that others can link back to. And uncover the broken links of your competitors and pitch them to ask for a replacement with your site’s link.

6. Make your site mobile friendly

Search engines love user-friendly websites. If you want your website to be liked by users and Google, then enhance mobile-friendliness—Google’s all-important algorithm checks the website for mobile-friendliness for ranking.

To improve mobile friendliness: a mobile-friendly website can provoke users to share with their friends, family, and clients. 

  1. Pay attention to button and font sizes while designing your website.
  2. Test both the desktop and mobile versions of the site for better understanding.
  3. Check the mobile-friendliness of your website. 

7. Use canonical tags

Having duplicate pages is not a good SEO practice. Having multiple pages with similar content will confuse search engines. But sometimes, it is essential to have one. Using the ‘rel-=canonical‘ tag and mentioning the reference site will help Google identify the original content from the duplicate.

Use canonical tags for all duplicate pages and include the right URL for proper indexing.

8. Enhance user engagement

User engagement measures how well your visitors interact with your site. To understand user engagement, measure metrics like CTR, average time spent on the page, sessions, bounce rate, and other behavioral data.

Google Analytics can help you with these metrics and flag pages that must be improvised. Google puts its users at the forefront and ranks the website with a good user engagement rate.

Google’s hummingbird update 2013 looks for the overall meaning of the page and not just keywords for ranking. So, provide accurate content by understanding the need and queries of your target audience. Use augmented reality and interactive tools to enhance the user experience. 

9. Conduct competitive research

Guesswork may fail; only smart work by understanding data will help you. To start with competitive research, understanding your competitors for your target keywords and niche is necessary. It can also help you understand where you stand in the digital domain of SERP, you need to do a competitor analysis.

Find the potential keywords for which your competitor ranks and conduct a backlink analysis for your competitor. It is one of the simple SEO tips help small businesses we have. It can help you spot the weak spots in your SEO strategy and uncover new ways to reach your target audience. 

For comprehensive competitor analysis, use the beginner-friendly tool SuiteJar.

10. Overhaul your most visited pages

Instead of creating a new page, identify the page that doesn’t perform well and optimizing it is an ideal SEO would be a better option. To spot those pages, go to Google Analytics and navigate Acquisition> search console > queries.

Go to advanced search and add average position as your dimension. Choose a page with a ranking greater than ten and start overhauling those. Make it to be the best piece of content that anyone loves.

11. Unleash the potential of video content

The consumption of video content has increased since 2016 from 72% to 81% in 2021, according to Cisco. People are likelier to stay longer with video content, which will be sharable material for your site. You can embed videos on your blog posts and other landing pages, enhancing user experience.

Video marketing strategy has much-untapped potential and can increase your organic reach. Follow the given SEO tips for small business owners to explore a new opportunity in video marketing.

  • Update title and description.
  • Enhance the video and audio quality.
  • Integrate the video to other pages.
  • Address the pain points of your target audience with your video content.

12. Rank for featured snippets

Snippets are short answers for a specific query and appear above all the other search results. It may entail a video, image, list, table, or video. It is considered position 0, and the pages featured in snippets tend to have high CTR and page views.

Produce better quality content than your competitors and use strong resources. Use proper headers, make the content structured and use bullet point if needed. See if any featured snippet is present while keyword researching and add required content to increase the chance for ranking with snippets. 

13. Optimize voice search

Voice search is slowly gaining popularity, and over 44.2% of internet users in the US use a voice assistant. It could become a norm and a new opportunity to expand your organic reach.

Voice search could enhance your local SEO of your small businesses. Most search queries are common FAQs, so produce high-value content optimized for voice search. Target long-tail keywords and use a conversational tone in your blog posts.

14. Install an SSL certificate

SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer, a security protocol for websites to protect data transfer between users and browsers. It encrypts user data and keeps online transactions secure. The website is protected if you see a padlock near the URL.

One of the latest algorithms of Google considers an SSL certificate as a criterion for ranking. The indexing system will first look for more HTTPS pages. If the former is unavailable, equivalent HTTP pages will be indexed.

15. Create a custom 404 page

No matter how careful you are, you cannot neglect the fact that there is a chance for visitors to get a 404 alert while visiting a page. Don’t give a chance to lose your visitor. 

Customizing the 404 error page will help you retain the visitor and reduce bounce rates. Instead of redirecting visitors to the homepage and other related pages, you can give them options by adding links of your home page, popular blog posts or any other pages with a high value. 

Or, guide the visitors with a contact form to raise a ticket about the broken link. This will enhance the trust towards your brand.

16. Enhance your site speed

Google wants what its users love and enjoy. So in 2010, it modified its algorithm and started considering site speed as a factor for ranking as it is one of the important criteria for user experience. Studies reveal that pages that take more than 4 seconds to load, are losing 25% of their visitors. People lose patience and trust, jumping off to other sites. 

This can be easily followed by implementing some SEO best practices. Compress the size of the image to decrease your page’s loading time. Reducing your redirect and enabling browser caching can increase the speed of your site. 

Check your site speed for every page using tools like SuiteJar and enhance its efficiency.

17. Use schema markup

In the age of Hummingbird and RankBrain, how your page answers a query determines the position in the SERP. The schema markup code can help Google understand the content and become an entity of the Knowledge graph.

The ratings that are visible on the SERP are made possible using Schema. Thus, deploying this language can help you gain trust and rank higher in search engines. Schema markup also supports rich snippets, potentially increasing your click-through rates.

18. Create XML sitemaps

Another SEO Tip we have for small businesses are implementing proper XML sitemaps. They are files that list out all your pages and help Google understand your website’s content and context. The sitemap enables crawlers to find your page in less time and provide valuable information about the last crawled date, updated date, and many other.

Google will find quality pages of your site with the XML sitemap even if the interlinking isn’t built properly. Adding your site to GSC will enable Google crawlers to find your sitemap easily.

19. Ensure proper indexing of your page

Webpage indexing is a process carried out by the search engine to identify pages. Without indexing, there is no chance for a page to appear on the search results. 

The crawlers crawl through the web pages in a bottom-up approach and collect information about the page. The information collected will be used by the search engine’s algorithm and determines its position on the SERP.

Integrate your website with Google Search Console to know when your site was last crawled. You can also raise an indexing request using GSC.

20. Include a privacy statement and disclaimer on your site

This a yet another simple SEO tips for small business owners to create trust among your end users. Though it is not considered a ranking factor, it is a must-do task in your SEO checklist. A privacy policy will inform your audience how their data will be used. 

The terms of use and disclaimer tell the rules of the websites and the limitations of your liability when a user uses your site. 

21. Use the LSI keyword

LSI stands for Latent Semantic Indexing, which is not an exact synonym of the main keyword but is a related keyword. To avoid ambiguity and provide a relevant result for a search query, Google uses the LSI keyword to find accurate results. 

Sprinkling LSI keywords on your text content can improve rankings and boost your organic reach.

22. Conduct regular SEO audits

Performing regular SEO audits can help you spot the flaws in your site, allowing you to fix them. As Google constantly updates its search engine’s algorithm to remain aligned with it, you have constantly track different metrics.

You need to keep a tab of ranking fluctuations, views, impressions, and many other metrics to check if the formulated strategy is working.  

Tech SEO audits are something to focus more on. If you are someone new this, here is a complete technical SEO checklist for you to work with. 

23. Constantly update the outdated content

Google wants to provide relevant information to its users at any cost. It looks for fresh content and simultaneously eliminates outdated content from the SERPs. 

And it should be noted that it is easier and better to update an existing page than create a new one.

Updating outdated blogs and landing pages can significantly boost your SEO. But the problem is find these. If done manually, it can munch up a significant amount of time, and there is no tool to help you with. Until now.

SuiteJar provides a unique feature that helps identify these outdated content and provides with the keywords and backlinks to be made, which can help increase the chances of blogs/landing pages to rank in the SERP results.

24. Create a local listing

implementing local SEO for small businesses can help you gain trust in your business’s locality. As per stats, 81% of buyers do online research before visiting the store. Creating a local directory for your business will improve your search ranking and provide Google with rich content and local signals.

Estimate the time required for deploying each method and schedule the task in the task manager. Beginning with a user-friendly SEO tool like SuiteJar will be ideal, as it offers focused insights that are highly potential. You will not end up getting confused with so many different metrics. 

Start implementing the above-provided simple SEO tips for your small/local businesses and accelerate your organic reach.