In this article, you are going to learn about “Business SEO” and some new strategies to increase sales and conversions in 2021.
The primary goal of your business is to reach the right audience and convert that audience into your customers.
You know that 93% of online experiences start with a search, and 47% of people click on one of Google’s top results [Searchenginejournal.com, 2016]
What does this mean to you? Whether you want to buy a product or service, you first go to the search engine and find some top listings. Because you believe in Google’s top results
Upon searching, you decide which company or service provider has the best reviews. And then you go to the actual store and buy the product.
Whenever you talk about top listings and rankings, you always come up with the word SEO. And I hope you are probably aware of this.
Search engines are now playing an important role in getting your business to the right audience. But this is possible only when your store is online.
If your business is not online, then you are out of business. Indeed, according to ThinkWithGoogle, 75% of smartphone users search first before visiting the store.
61% of marketers prefer SEO and search rankings (HubSpot) as higher rankings lead to greater success.
The above facts clearly depict the importance of SEO for small businesses.
Now let’s start …
SEO is essential for both large and small businesses. And above all, you have understood how business SEO is an important factor to take it to the next level.
Table of Content –
What is business SEO?
In short, SEO that helps businesses increase search visibility and conversions through organic traffic is known as “Business SEO”.
Now you must be wondering what is the difference between Business SEO and Traditional SEO?
As you know, SEO is nothing but an optimization process. So whenever you talk about standard SEO; Your focus is to “increase organic traffic“.
And whenever you talk about Business SEO; Your primary focus is “increasing targeted traffic and conversions at optimal ROI (Return of investment)“
|Normal SEO||Business SEO|
|1. Submit a website on Google Search Console||1. Submit business sites to both Search Console and “Google My Business” [also consider other search engines such as Bing and Yandex|
|2. It deals with technical issues, keyword research, design, backlinks and quality content, etc.||2. It deals with e-commercial issues, product quality, authority including standard SEO factors|
|3. NAP (name, address, and phone) is not necessary||3. All business information (NAP-name, address, phone) is required to be provided. Especially for local businesses.|
You need three properties that transform a small business into a big business: –
Trust: – Trust is important because it creates a deep connection between the business and the customer. It increases recommendations and reduces competition.
Adaptability: – Your business must be adaptive; Adaptive in the sense ‘moving with current pace and give preferences to consumer’s priority.’
Availability: – Make your product and service available to a large audience.
Now let’s come to the next lesson…
Importance of LOCAL-SEO (SEO for local business) in small businesses
In this lesson, you will see some statistics that confirm the importance of local SEO.
Local SEO part of Business-SEO. It helps a small business grow.
As more people are accessing the Internet, it becomes necessary to do your business online to target a larger audience.
Google notices 150% growth for “near me” searches (ThinkWithGoogle, Jan-July 2017) in comparison to Jan-July 2015.
In fact, 46% of all searches on Google are local.
This clearly shows that people prefer to search nearby stores to find a place of interest.
This can be a golden opportunity for small businesses to attract local consumers such as restaurants, massage parlors, and salons, etc.
For example, if I want to go to dinner, first I will search for a nearby restaurant, and then I will choose the one which has a high customer rating.
Local SEO is essential for every local business as it helps to reach more people locally.
In fact, 95% of smartphone users search for local words, of which 61% say business, and 59% visit stores.
Image source: https://www.lyfemarketing.com
Consumers search for a variety of local information
From the above, you can understand how local SEO is essential for small businesses.
Now let’s go ahead and learn the “role of content marketing in small business”.
The role of content marketing for small business
In this lesson you will learn the following things: –
- Statistics that prove the importance of content marketing
- Role of Content Marketing in Small Business SEO
- A variety of content types that you can create to diversify it
“80% of small businesses do not invest in content marketing, and experts warn that they are missing an important marketing opportunity (Clutch. Co. 2018).”
Large businesses have already topped search engines. And this greatly increases competition for small businesses.
Whenever you search for a product, search engines suggest some of the top trusted brands.
In simple words, to develop your online business, you must come to the top of the search engine.
Apart from this, you also need to build a strong relationship and trust with your audience.
That’s why content marketing comes in small businesses.
Although you can run ads to get some customers but it’s no longer useful.
Adblockers are now giving opportunities to block ads, and in 2015 nearly 200 million people were using ad-blocker.
In fact, approx. 11% of internet users have blocked online advertising which is slowing down the growth of small businesses.
This means that you cannot survive online with advertising, you need to do something different that can work forever.
According to neilpatel.com, content marketing is not just creating content but is a strategy that uses content to build a better relationship with the audience.
Content marketing is an important factor to make business-SEO effective.
Content helps the consumer to understand your product/service well which encourages them to buy the product.
About 53% of consumers say that offering free content can attract more people to learn about your business.
All the information above is sufficient to prove how powerful content marketing is?
Now understand how you can use this strategy to grow your business.
If you want to add value to your product, provide what people are curious about. Content helps your business rank at the top of search engines.
The best strategy to attract massive attention to your business is to ‘diversify your content‘.
Variety of CONTENT you can prepare
- Blog articles
- Case studies
Let’s have a look at this image to get more ideas
According to https://www.newsvend.com, each type of content has different results.
Here is a picture that can help you know what kind of material works well and cost-effectively.
There are so many social media sites where you can interact with the audience and share your content to build a strong relationship and engagement.
Most Popular Social Media Sites You Already Know…
Content marketing could be the best option for small businesses because it is cheaper than other traditional marketing.
In fact, the cost of content marketing is 62% lower than other marketing strategies.
Small businesses using content marketing to generate 7.8 times more site traffic than other businesses.
Now let’s talk about the SEO mistakes that small businesses make.
SEO Mistakes that small business make
SEO is getting harder over time as more businesses are online now.
To achieve goals quickly, you need “business-SEO strategies” that work in the right direction.
In this lesson, you’ll learn some SEO mistakes small businesses make unknowingly.
But new businesses use SEO incorrectly and eventually they fail. SEE WHY…
6 SEO mistakes that small business should avoid
#A. Buying SEO service initially
Most small businesses purchase SEO services after launching their online store without KNOWING SEO.
I suggest that you should not buy any SEO services unless you know the basics of SEO yourself. Because it helps you understand what is bad for SEO.
Many times small businesses purchase an SEO service that guarantees higher rankings. They perform off-site SEO like –
- Keyword research and analysis
- Technical errors like loading speed, server errors, crawl errors, and sitemap errors.
- Backlink creation
- Content analysis
Now what you expect in return: –
- High search engine rankings
- Drive more targeted consumers to your business
- Increase in online presence
- Growth in sales and conversions
Unfortunately, they do not reach any goal. Although you may get rankings for a short time, it is not beneficial in the long run.
And that’s the truth … you don’t get anything in return
I have noticed that many business small business SEO services convince you to rank for competitive keywords within 10, 20 days, or 30 days.
And surprisingly they list your business for a short period, and you feel blessed.
But the bad news is that it will not help you in the long run.
In fact, this is next to impossible because SEO is a slow process.
And if you want a high ranking for competitive keywords, you have to learn and execute fast to get quick results, and even then, it takes months.
#B. Try ranking for broad keywords having high competition and search volume
Do not target broad, high competing keywords because those terms can take years to rank.
The best way to overcome the competition is to go for long-term keywords.
Once you create a compelling article with less competition, you are good to go. And you can also rank for highly competitive phrases later.
There are many free and paid tools that you can use to search for long-tailed keywords. Some of them are listed below…
- Long Tail Pro
- Keyword everywhere
- Google autocomplete
- Google keyword planner
You can use any of these tools and start producing less competitive keyword ideas for your business.
A few related articles that you might check out…
- Best keyword research process to boost your rankings
- What is the LSI keyword and how to use these keywords in your blog article
- How to use Google keyword planner effectively
#C. SEO without content
If you are serious about SEO then start creating content for your business because SEO is difficult without content.
You need content and a well-paced content strategy to add value to your productivity.
#D. No targeting, No branding, No community, No trust
When you are new to the business, you have no goals, no branding, no community, and certainly no trust.
And if you do not have these basic pillars, then you cannot make your business sustainable.
It takes time, and you need to develop all these qualities over time.
Targeting: – Incorrect geolocation and audience targeting may result in failure. So it is better that you analyze the targeting to reach the right audience.
Branding: – Google has officially announced that the mention of the brand is now more powerful than backlinks. Therefore it is better that you spread brand awareness rather than just looking for relevant linking.
In fact, Gary Ilys says  “If you publish high-quality content that is highly cited on the Internet – and I’m not just talking about links, but social networks and your branding I also mention people talking about, like, nonsense. Then you’re doing great.” (Brighton SEO)
Trust: – It helps in building a strong relationship with you and customers. If your business has no trust, no one appreciates you, and you can no longer survive.
But you may ask, how do I build trust?
Some trust-building tips that you can use in your business…
- Be assured what product or service you provide to your customer
- Never back from your promises
- Respect your customers, customers, and shareholders
- Always give more in return for what the customer expects.
- Provide complete support in optimum time
- Never compromise customer expectations
- Be adaptive and productive
- Keep your customer happy
#E. Ignoring mobile usage
“Mobile usage surpasses the desktop for the first time” (says https://Statcounter.com, November 2016).
If your business isn’t mobile-ready, then it’s time to optimize it. Otherwise, you are out of business.
Small businesses are already concise. And it’s a drawback because they have LIMITED audience.
So, if you aren’t considering mobile SEO for small businesses, then you are abstaining from a vast crowd.
While it’s never too late to make your business mobile-ready to get business advancement.
A few tips that can help you bring more users to your business…
- While it comes to mobile SEO, the first thing you should do is ‘Design & responsiveness’ of your business theme (Best WordPress themes for businesses). Make sure to use SEO-friendly themes.
- The second thing is the loading speed. If your site is loading under 5 seconds, then you are good to go. Otherwise, go and make fewer HTTP requests to reduce the loading time of your site.
- Proper product showcasing
- User experience
#F. Voice Search Optimization
Nearly, 1 billion voice searches are performed each month on a smart assistant (by https://alpine.ai).
According to ComScore, ‘50% of total search will be voice search by 2020’.
Voice search is growing and helping users to perform searches faster than ever before. It has now changed what it was in 2016.
From the image source, it has proven that In 2017 Google voice search increased by 4x then in 2016.
It means if your content is optimized for voice search then it can boost traffic to your business significantly.
You can learn more about voice search and other SEO trends from here: SEO trends to rank in Google
New business strategies to increase sales & conversions
So far, you’ve learned what is business SEO?, the importance of local SEO in small businesses, and SEO mistakes to avoid in 2020 or beyond, etc.
Now in this lesson, you will learn some new SEO tips for small businesses to increase traffic, brand awareness, sales and conversions.
Let’s get started…
To make a business successful, you need to know the following things: –
- Set-up business goals
- Know your business potential
- Product quality
- Business Reach
A few tips for small businesses to increase conversions & sales in 2019 or beyond
#i.) Make your business secure
84% of users would cancel a purchase if data were sent over an insecure connection.
You don’t want to risk your business. So, it is essential for companies to encrypt data. Because 58% of malware attack targets the small market.
And approximately 92% of malware is delivered via email.
For this, you can use an SSL certificate that encrypts your data. Some cybersecurity services that can protect your business…
The advantage of having a secured business
- A secured transaction gain more authority & trust
- It helps rankings because security is now a ranking parameter in google
- A company with an SSL can generate more leads and conversions
- There is no fear of data breaching or being hacked.
#ii.) Video content
Videos are a great way of communication and highly consumable. Using product videos on e-commerce sites encourages users to make a purchase.
Using videos for product showcasing on your store can increase product purchases by 144%. Moreover, 83% of businesses believe that video content provides good ROI.
A few video marketing stats (by Wyzowl’s in 2018 ) reveals how video content is vital for small businesses.
- Video marketing has helped 76% of marketers to increase sales and traffic.
- 81% of businesses use video as a marketing tool.
- A person invests 1-hour watching video content every day
- 74% of users buy a product after watching a product showcasing video.
Another reason for using video content is the rise of mobile video. 90% of mobile users now watch videos.
The advantage of embedding video content to your e-commerce store
- It increases sales & conversions
- Video content helps to produce good ROI (Return of investment)
- It encourages the consumer to buy a product.
- Video content increases brand awareness and social attention.
#iii.) Return policy
The return policy can increase your sales significantly. In fact, stats say that it influences 80% of sales.
In fact, 72% of consumers willing to buy from e-commerce that has a fast & straightforward return.
Besides that, nearly 67% of people will read your return policy before buying anything from you.
So be careful while preparing your return policy. Don’t confuse users because it may affect your sales.
Your return policy must give satisfaction to the consumer and also immediate return.
Many small businesses don’t return for free, and this is why they lose 80% of customers. An excellent presentation that shows the impact of the return policy.
If you’re loyal to your customers, then they will be more likely to buy from you. You can enhance your business loyalty by providing an easy and simple return.
#iv.) Customer Reviews
How you can encourage users to buy from you. The simple answer is “positive customer reviews.”
Your business must have a review panel where your customer can share their experience. Your old customers are gold. If you’ve satisfied them, then they will give you positive feedback.
These positive reviews encourage new user those become your customer further.
The importance of customer review
- Consumers spend 31% more money in a business which has excellent customer review.
- 72% of people believe in online reviews. Positive reviews shine a company and increase trust
- 90% of consumers are willing to read online reviews before visiting the real store
- Negative reviews influences 86% of people to buy anything from your online store
Whenever you get negative reviews from a customer, it means there is something wrong. You need to deal with these negative reviews.
In case if you get these types of feedback then first, respond to all those feedback and accept your mistakes.
Don’t give excuses, instead provide the possible solution to the problem.
#V.) Low shipping charges
According to bigcommerce.com, a high shipping charge discourage 58% consumer to make a purchase successful.
Why does this happen?
Let me share with you a scenario… Suppose you go to an online shoe store and add favorite shoes to your cart at a price of $100.
Now what happens is that when you open your cart and see the final price after shipping charges ($110) you suddenly change your decision to buy it.
Many times I’ve also undone a purchase because of high shipping charges. It is what small businesses are not taking care of. That’s why most of them are not growing.
You must strategize your shipping/handling charges to increase sales and conversions. This little change can do wonders for your business. So keep shipping charges low as much as possible.
The best way to increase sales is to adjust your shipping charges smartly. If you didn’t do it then, you might lose 44% of buyers who were willing to buy but change the decision finally because of shipping charges.
A few tips that can work
- Free shipping with a little adjustment in your price and margins
- Add discount offers. Because it may reduce the effect of shipping charges
- Ask buyers what they prefer to pay as a shipping charge
You can compare shipping charges with your business competitors. Always keep it lower than your competitors for the same distance & geolocations.
Steps for small business to grow successfully
In this last lesson, I will show you some steps that will help you in your business.
However, you have already known many things. And you have understood the power of SEO for small businesses.
Nevertheless, you should know a process that you can adopt for your business from day one. A process that involves very few steps and helps you avoid SEO mistakes.
Now let’s dive into it …
#a.) Determine your business presence (Online & Offline)
Before starting an online business, identify how much your business can affect people’s lives. If your business is not capable, then there is no need to establish an online presence.
SO, this is the ‘business presence‘ that you should determine in the beginning.
Sometimes, businesses with an offline presence can do better than online. So it is always necessary for your business to be present both online and offline.
Because it gives an opportunity to raise awareness of your brand.
#b.) Create your business site
Nearly, 64% of small businesses have a business website. So why don’t you create your own as it helps grow your business fast?
Creating a site is not that hard but managing it is harder. That’s why you need to select a reliable server to launch your website.
As the business is a concern, you can’t take the risk. So, I always recommend you to use a ‘dedicated server or hosting’ where your data will be highly secured.
However, a dedicated server may cost you a lot but also keep your business up and secure. You can also go for VPS (virtual private server)
Now you might ask ‘which server or hosting should I choose for my small business site?’
Best hosting companies for small business: –
All three are the best hosting for small businesses. But make sure you compare these hosting providers and then choose one that fits your business.
#c.) Design your business site
A responsive and fully optimized site can attract more users to your business.
Salient points to remember while designing
- Fully responsive
- Smooth scroll
- Mobile-friendly (Mobile SEO techniques)
- Fast loading
- Supports schema markups
- It must support all essential plugins like woo-commerce.
- Easy to navigate
- Visible Call to action
#d.) Write product-based content
Once you set and design your website, it is time to publish some valuable articles that add value to your business and improve the productivity of your business.
You can even create video content for a better engagement.
#e.) Submit to all business directories
Submit your site to all business directories. There are tons of directories. Some are listed below.
Top business listing sites (directories)
- Google my business
- Yahoo local
- LinkedIn company directory
- Yellow pages
Upon submission, write a compelling introduction to your business. After that, you’re asked for your business name, address, and phone number. These are the necessary information that every business should provide.
Moreover, you can add opening and closing times, your business site’s URL, and provide a video or picture of your office.
#f.) Local SEO to establish a well-recognized business
You cannot expect your business to grow overnight. It takes time for your business to succeed globally.
Before you go global, first, make it recognizable locally, only then you can move forward.
Local SEO helps small businesses reach a local audience. It improves business visibility and also increases brand awareness.
Local SEO for small business
- Team up with other local businesses in your category
- Add your business to all business directories. (Mentioned above)
- Optimize local search keywords related to the business
- Create a blog section on your e-commerce site and add valuable information about your business products and services.
- Use schema markup as it helps search engines understand your business in more detail.
- Allow users to review your business as positive reviews can help build trust
- Use content marketing to connect with more people
- Optimize your business page for voice search
- Add pictures and videos to ‘Google my business’ profile.
- Be sure to confirm that your business listing is verified on all business directories
- A business site with a good user interface and site structure can do wonders.
- Keep the local language in your mind
- Add your precise location so people can easily find it on Google Maps
#g.) Stay Adaptive
In business, keep your product consumer-friendly. Otherwise, no one will buy from you. Therefore, remember that you need to be adaptive if you want to be competitive.
To be adaptive, you need to be flexible. Adaptability is a measure of how fast you respond to change.
You cannot depend on an older version of your product. Therefore, upgrade your product to maintain a balance between customer demand and trends.
Compatibility is a good quality of a person and is therefore for business. It helps the business to become a leader in its domain.
Adaptability leadership is the only way to get results.
Now you come to know how important ‘Business SEO‘ is in small businesses. Reading this guide, you must have learned many things, and now is the time to execute all strategies quickly.
I have explained everything from business-SEO to SEO mistakes. Also, I have talked about local SEO and its importance.
As more people are getting online, your business must be on the internet so people can find your business.
I have done it here. Now it is your turn to learn and implement these things.
I hope this helps you. And if you like this guide, then share it on social media sites.
What did you learned from this article? Please tell me in the comments section.
Do you have any questions? feel free to ask…