- Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Defined
- How does Google What to Show in the Search Results?
- Local Search Helps Small Business Owners — A Lot
- What about that no more than $100/month tool
- 9 Tips for Do-it-Yourself SEO for Small Business Owners
- #1 Your Page Title Matters A Lot
- #2 Meta Descriptions Drive People to Click
- #3 Tell People you are the Best
- Tip #4 – Pick the right keyword
- Small Business SEO Tips – Tip #5 Get Local
- Tip #6 – Outline the Content in the way people, and Google, want you to
- For Tip #7 – Answer the questions people are asking
- Tip #8 Follow the formula – include the right layout and key elements
- Tip #9 Follow the formula – include the right words and phrases
- Final Thoughts – For Now
Every small business wants to appear at the top of Google search results. If they can reach the top, customers will simply flow in. That’s why we created these small business SEO Tips just for you.
But for most small business owners, there is a fear that it will cost too much to hire a consultant, that they cannot do it themselves, and that getting to the top of Google is beyond them.
The good news?
If you manage your own website and can afford less than $100/month for an easy-to-use tool that will help you rank, you can do it yourself.
First, let’s define a couple of key terms we’ll use in this article.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Defined
SEO is the process of updating your website in the right way for Google to move your website up in the search results.
For this article, we will simply refer to SEO vs Search Engine Optimization (for ease of reading).
How does Google What to Show in the Search Results?
Google’s goal is to show the best possible result for every search.
Through the magic of computers, it’s actually able to “read and understand” what’s on your website, and compare that to similar articles across the internet.
This magic is something called artificial intelligence and it has gotten really good.
If you want to show up higher in the rankings, you need to ensure your web pages are the best fit for your audience.
It’s actually that simple — and that hard.
Local Search Helps Small Business Owners — A Lot
Local search happens when someone types into Google stuff like:
“pizza near me”
“best insurance agent in London”
“top taxidermist in Tijuana”
Google knows where you are unless you shut off something called “Location Services”, so when you type the above searches into Google, it runs off and tries to find the best answer to the question.
This is fantastic as you don’t always have to have the best pizza shop in the world, just the best one near the person running the search.
You get it.
What about that no more than $100/month tool
Surfer SEO is an SEO tool that can review your website, suggest improvements, and give you feedback on what words and phrases to include on your web pages to rank better than you do today.
You should give it a try, review my article on how we use it for our website, and then read our nine Small Business SEO Tips.
9 Tips for Do-it-Yourself SEO for Small Business Owners
As you read through these tips, we will also provide examples with Surfer SEO, where appropriate.
Remember to download it and try these tips with your website.
#1 Your Page Title Matters A Lot
When someone searches in Google, they are looking for information.
Does your title show them that you have the best information?
For example, if someone wants to eat pizza tonight, and they are hanging out in Sydney, Australia, they might search for “best pizza in Sydney”.
If your page title is this:
“Where to find the best pepperoni pizza in Sydney”
You’re more likely to have them stop in then someone with this title:
See the difference?
Note: Keyword titles should be less than 60 characters and always include the primary word or phrase that defines the purpose of the page.
#2 Meta Descriptions Drive People to Click
The meta description is what people see when they get their search results back from google. Here is an example.
The top of the page shows reviews, we’ll come back to that, the right side may show a specific business, but let’s look at the actual search results for “best pizza in sydney Australia”, and we will see a listing like this one.
In this case, the “22 Of The Best Pizza Joints…” is the title, and the text next to “5 days ago –” is the meta description. It says “22 Of the Best Pizza Joints in Sydney Right Now.”
People love these Best of posts, so…
#3 Tell People you are the Best
Google does not care if you write this post, your competitor, or someone else.
So, write a Best of Posts, listing your business first, your competitors after, and be honest about what you do well and what your competitors do well. This is an amazing small business SEO tip that every business owner should follow.
People will search for “Best pizza in Sydney, click on one of the first two results”, and they won’t care who wrote it.
Let’s open Surfer to show you how it can be done.
For our example, lets say we run a tax preparation business in Austin, Texas, and want to create a web page or blog post that will rank well in Google.
In Surfer, navigate to Content Editor and enter “Tax Preparation”, set the location to Austin, Texas, and choose Create Content Editor. The page should look like this before you press the Create button.
Tip #4 – Pick the right keyword
Choose a keyword that is one-three words long that describes your business, “tax preparation” in this case.
Small Business SEO Tips – Tip #5 Get Local
is to pick a local area within which you operate. If you are a national business, pick your country, if state-level your state, if global, choose the country the majority of your buyers are in.
After you press Create Content Editor, a few seconds will pass, and you will see something like this:
Click on “tax preparation” to open up the Content Editor, and you will now see something like this.
Tip #6 – Outline the Content in the way people, and Google, want you to
In Surfer, click on Outline on the right side of the screen.
Let’s look at this for a second as this will save you a ton of time!
If you click on the downward-facing arrow next to Titles, Headings, and Questions, you will see suggestions you can include in your content.
For example, click on Heading and see options like this:
Click on the “Section” (next to the word Add:) under “Tax deadline is April 18th”.
It gets dropped into the Content Editor where you can adjust it to be accurate for your business (don’t just use what the editor gave you).
For Tip #7 – Answer the questions people are asking
Now, look at the Topics & Questions area, clicking on the Copy icon to the right.
Back in the Surfer Content Editor, paste that into your content, and you now have these sections (which are popular questions people search for), in your content for you to answer, looking like:
Tip #8 Follow the formula – include the right layout and key elements
Surfer tells you the layout Google wants.
Click back on Guidelines on the right side and the screen changes to this.
Note that the Content Score is 35/100, it’s in the yellow Zone, no chance of ranking anytime soon.
So how do we get it to green?
Again, Surfer tells us how. The content structure area shows us:
- We currently have 102 words, and want to have between 3085 and 3548.
- We have 5 headings and want between 51 and 237.
- We have 1 paragraph and want at least 95.
- And we currently have no images and want between 14 and 54.
That’s a lot.
Tip #9 Follow the formula – include the right words and phrases
But here’s tip #9. Surfer tells us what words and phrases, and in what amount, should be included. Look below the Content Structure and you see:
In other words, you want to include the following phrases:
- Tax Prep Fees between 4 and 20 times.
- Tax Help between 3 and 12 times.
and so forth.
Yes, you need to write it still, but you have the map for ranking on google right here.
Final Thoughts – For Now
Surfer makes it that easy for your business to rank – will you use these small business SEO tips to get to the top?