Smart entrepreneurs don't just hope for a great New Year. You make it possible. A few key steps send customers your way.
5 min read
The opinions expressed by the entrepreneur's contributors are their own.
Now is the time to sharpen your SEO strategy. How to position yourself to seize the new year and do new business.
Win the local game
How important is local SEO? For companies with physical locations, that's all. Just check out the numbers recently posted on Hubspot.
46% of all Google searches are for local information. 88% of local business searches on a mobile device result in a call or visit within 24 hours. Searches near me or near me increased more than 900% in two years. 92% of searchers select a company on the first page of local search results. By 2021, mobile devices will impact more than $ 1.4 trillion in local sales.
You can't afford to lose potential customers who want to buy what you sell where you are. Bring her in.
The best news on winning the local SEO game: It's pretty darn easy. These two simple steps will rank your business high in the right search results.
Get a Google My Business account. If you only implement one strategy from this article, make it this one. It's quick, easy, and free. With this tool you can create a basic business entry (location, opening times, description). You are essentially setting your flag on Google search results. Do this now. Do a little keyword research. There are tons of free tools out there to help you cover your keyword base. I like KeywordsFX because it doesn't require an account – just type in a keyword and other keywords will be suggested. By creating content with obvious keywords, users can find your business when they search online.
Related topics: Google's new algorithm update means new best practices
Capture Covid traffic
Ideally, winning at SEO requires both a short and a long game. We'll talk about your long-term strategy later, but for now, one of the biggest factors in short-term SEO right now is related to Covid-19. I can't think of an industry that has been left untouched by the global health crisis and your website should reflect relevant concerns in your industry. Regardless of what you're selling, it has had an impact on your business. Update your web content to reflect these changes.
How you tackle the health crisis naturally depends on your company. However, prospects are looking, and you need to capture that traffic. Any company with a physical location should highlight information about cleaning and disinfection procedures and other safety measures. Restaurants can advertise take-away meals. Stores can advertise their pick-up and delivery options by the roadside. These are the obvious SEO strategies, but don't stop there. If you are an online retailer, you may want to benefit from the diffusion of DIY projects that are done at home. Or maybe you can emphasize how safe it is to shop from home.
You may need to get a little creative, but updating your website with the latest health crisis information can help ensure that your business is in the hot topic search results. Even if it hasn't been a major factor in running your business or if your business is temporarily closed, winning the short-term SEO game can translate into long-term success.
Related: How Your Small Business Can Survive the Covid-19 Pandemic
Think long term
Sure, taking advantage of changing trends in keywords and search queries can attract some new visitors to your website. And when you have a great website, some of these new visitors may come back for your spectacular content. But for the most part, SEO is a long game. How long? It turns out, we know: Ahrefs did a study of high ranking websites for a variety of random search terms this year. The average top page is more than two years old, and only 22% of the top pages were created in the last year.
Related: Evergreen content is the secret to getting more traffic
What does this mean for your company and your SEO? This means that you can't just spend an hour or two a year on SEO and expect to get (and keep) a top result for your relevant keywords. SEO needs to be incorporated into your business in such a way that it is part of your regular activities.
Whether you are managing your website and SEO in-house, or hiring an expert, be careful how people find your business online. Every company benefits from visibility. Businesses large and small, product and service providers, hyperlocal and multinational companies – all businesses benefit from solid search engine optimization that helps people find them, find answers, and ultimately make a purchase.
Your long-term SEO strategy should be diverse, combining keyword research, evergreen content, timely content, powerful link building, and listings on relevant, industry-related websites like Yelp and Trip Advisor.
Related Topics: How To Get Your Customers To Leave Positive Reviews (And Why You Can't Afford Not To)
It takes care and patience to achieve a successful SEO strategy. Plan to be around in the long run and make it an ongoing priority. Successful search engine optimization can dramatically improve the volume and quality of potential customers who find your business online. The right combination of local search engine optimization, trending keywords, and a long-term approach can prepare your business for success in the New Year and beyond.