Embroiled in the world of search marketing, we often have the idea that everyone knows about SEO and the benefits it can bring to the table. However, there’s an entire sector of the economy that may not know about it and, even when they do, put optimization on the bottom of the priority list. That sector is small business. SEO is important for small businesses. According to the Waspbarcode.com Small Business Report, the percentage of small business owners who own websites is close to 56%. However, the fact remains that 82% of those business owners with a website fail to utilize the benefits of SEO. Unfortunately, the world is filled with excuses for one thing or another. However, excuses won’t get things done with respect to anything in life, and they certainly won’t provide a solution to building your small business and realizing your entrepreneurial dreams. What will make a difference is figuring out how to surmount the obstacles that get in your way. With that in … [Read more...] about Overcoming SEO Adoption Hurtles for Small Business
Black small business owners
Being a small business is tough. Many businesses fail in the first year, and many more will not make it to the five-year mark. But even established businesses can fail if they are unable to adapt to changing times. Marketing is difficult — digital marketing even more so. And the black-box nature of SEO can make it the most difficult form of marketing your business. Yet when done well, there is little that can compete with strong, organic search engine visibility to promote your small business. Organic listings build trust with local customers, and all the best business relationships are built on a foundation of trust. In this article, I want to look at SEO as a marketing tactic specifically for small businesses. I will share everything we have learned working on hundreds of small business SEO projects. My intention is to arm you, as a business owner, with the knowledge and power to make the right decisions when implementing an SEO strategy — whether … [Read more...] about Small business SEO: Your questions answered
Let me start off by saying that I have seen black hat SEO tactics work for some sites, and in some cases they work very well. However, in my opinion, the potential for disaster and the long term effects that a Google penalty can have on your website are not worth the risks of black hat SEO. Google has spent years warning website owners about the dangers of black hat SEO, but with Panda and Penguin the search engine is really stepping up their enforcement policies. Black or grey hat tactics that used to slide by unnoticed, in some cases for years, are now getting sites tagged and penalized by the search engines. While this can be a frustrating and nerve-wracking time for many small businesses and site owners, I think the recent algorithm updates are finally sending a clear message from Google, and one that I've been saying all along, do small business SEO right or don't do it at all.Many small business owners are under an extreme amount of pressure to produce results and make things … [Read more...] about Small Business SEO: Do it Right or Don’t Do it at All
Link building remains the cornerstone of most search engine optimization efforts. According to Moz’s “2015 Search Engine Ranking Factors Study,” links have the strongest association with higher search rankings of all the (known) attributes used by Google in its core ranking algorithm. But one of the most common issues for small businesses is the struggle to build quality links. Lacking familiarity with current SEO best practices, many small firms still fall for the infamous black hat tactics to get links. That is a mistake. You see, search engines will continue to crack down on link exchanges, paid anchor placements and other shady approaches to building links. Therefore, it is best to avoid these “old school” methods and focus on relevant, authoritative links that drive real traffic. Here are six ways to build such links for your small business website in 2016: 1. Partner with niche-specific influencers Niche-specific influencers have connections with … [Read more...] about 6 strategies to build links to your small business website
Google conspiracy theories aren’t new. Everyone likes to believe their rankings have tanked thanks to something other than poor-quality content or bad linking practices. In reality, a lot of people are guilty of less-than-great SEO. At the same time, it’s hard to ignore the fact that some businesses, no matter how “white hat” their methods, can never seem to gain traction in the SERPs. If you’re having trouble getting the traffic you want, it might just be conspiracy fact. A Small Business Problem: The Adwords Platform Isn’t Very Friendly One of the first nuggets of marketing advice you’re given, as a small business owner, is to market online using Google Adwords. It’s supposed to be a relatively predictable, and affordable, method for generating new leads. But, that train left the station years ago. Google Adwords is expensive, and it’s mostly where large corporations (or super-savvy and experienced marketers) play around with ad … [Read more...] about Does Google Discriminate Against Some Businesses?