At Anvil, we have a passion for moving our client’s businesses forward with measurable, actionable results and want to help them with their growth and success.
With this in mind, I wanted to provide recommendations a small business owner should look at when they are building a new website or if they are looking to improve the organic performance of their existing one.
- Mobile-Friendliness – Make sure that the website is both desktop and mobile friendly. With more and more searches being performed on mobile devices, it is absolutely imperative that a website is compatible with both desktop and mobile devices. Also, Google will penalize websites that are not mobile-friendly by displaying other websites, that may not be as relevant, before a website that is not mobile-friendly for searches performed on a mobile device.
- Keyword Optimization – Developing and implementing solid keyword optimization, both in the search engine title tag as well as the content of the website’s pages, is imperative as this will let the search engines know what the website and web page content is about and will increase visibility in the organic search results. Using the Google Keyword Planner to determine what the most commonly searched for keywords are, applicable to the content of the website or what a small business would like to rank for, will help to build the list that should be used to build the title tag optimization as well as provide a strong list of terms that should be used in the page content of the site. Properly structuring the title tags is important as well and a great resource for learning about this is Moz.com’s title tag page which can be found here.
- Write Solid, Compelling Text Content for Pages – Use keywords from the keyword development phase mentioned above as it is important to write unique, share-worthy content for your site. The more text that can be indexed by search engines the better. I would personally suggest shooting for 500 – 700 words minimum for the top level pages of a site (though you can probably get away with 300 – 500 words on the homepage). However, for informational pages, articles, or blog posts, I would recommend shooting for a minimum of 1,000 words if possible. This is something that has changed recently as the idea was to get as much information “above the scroll” but with more and more searches being done on mobile devices, users are becoming familiar with having to scroll to read the information provided on web pages which opens up the opportunity for longer pages of content. This provides small business the opportunity to integrate the keywords they hope to rank for.
- Link Profile Development – The top two ranking factors for a website are on-site optimization and backlinks, also known as a link profile. One thing that a small business can do to grow their position for organic search results is to develop their link profile by utilizing social media to generate links back to their website. Backlinks from websites with a high domain authority increase the quality of a website’s link profile and, in turn, will help the website become more visible to search engines. A couple of high domain authority social media channels that I would recommend using, if applicable to the business, are Pinterest (Domain Authority Score: 100) and YouTube (Domain Authority Score: 98). However, if a small business makes a post on any social media channel, they should include a link back to their website whether it be the Home page or a specific page that may be listed in the post.
- Consistently Update the Website – Once the core website content is in place and optimized with the keywords you developed and tested it is very important to not just sit back and wait for traffic to come pouring in. Search engines are always indexing websites and it is important to have new content for them to find when they index yours. One very easy way to do this is to utilize a blog which provides a medium that is part of the website and can be easily updated on a regular basis. The content that is generated on the blog should be applicable to the business and content of the website and should incorporate the most commonly searched keywords that are most applicable to the topic. Once a blog post has been made, the new post can be shared via social media channels to generate external exposure about the website and of course, should include a link back to the actual post on the site. As you can see, this process effectively combines Step 2, Step 3, and Step 4 and will help a small business grow its online presence both “internally” (on the website) as the search engines index the consistent updates as well as “externally” on social media channels which is a solid, yet manageable, combo for a small business owner.
Following the steps above should build a very solid foundation for a small business’s website and will also provide a way to continue to expand and grow into the future.
If you are interested in learning more about these steps, you should join us for my presentation at our next Lunch and Learn on August 10th at noon right here in our office. I will demonstrate more examples of how these recommendations can be used effectively to gain organic exposure for your site and business. RSVP to reserve your spot today!