There are so many different ways a small business can use the internet to grow their business revenue: there’s social media marketing, email marketing, paid ads and more. But too many business owners overlook one of the best ways to grow their revenue, and that is SEO.
SEO (Search Engine Optimisation) is the process by which you get your business’ website to rank on the pages of Google (and other search engines like Bing and Yahoo) for search phrases that your ideal customers are looking for.
In fact, for small businesses, especially location-based and e-commerce businesses, Google is one of the first places your clients will go to find you.
Research done by the team at GoGulf found that 46% of all Google searches are looking for local information. Meanwhile Brightedge have discovered that SEO drives over 1000x more traffic than social media does.
Given the clear importance of SEO, let’s take a look at how your small business can use SEO to grow your revenue!
Step 1: Set an SEO Goal
This is probably the most important step for you to take when it comes to using SEO to grow your business revenue.
You need to set some clear goals and aims for the outcomes you hope to see in your business. Setting short, medium and long-term goals will be key. I usually tell people to set goals they want to achieve in 3 months, 6 months and 12 months.
Your aims should be more than just hitting page 1 for certain search terms; they should be quantifiable goals, such as:
How much more traffic to your site do you want each month?
How many enquiries would you like to come through each month from organic search?
How much revenue would you like to come from the increased traffic?
Step 2: Choose Your Keywords
Just like in your goal-setting, you will want to choose keywords (search phrases) that you can target over the short-term, medium-term and long-term. The hardest to choose will be the long-term goals, so start there and then work your way back.
When it comes to keyword research, you can do this in a variety of ways, including: using Google suggest (Google autocomplete), asking the public and even Pinterest’s suggested search terms. This will give you a rough idea of what people in your industry are searching for.
Also have a look and see what your competitors are ranking for and decide if any of the phrases are ones you would like to target.
When you’re first starting out, it’s best to choose keywords that have 3 or more words in the search string, as those tend to be less competitive and easier to rank for than for those 1 or 2 word searches.
The average search volume you should be looking at targeting will depend on what your business is. If you are a location-based business then even a search phrase that only gets 50-200 searches a month can result in your business being fully booked out!
However, if you are selling on the online space – either through e-commerce or services – then you will want to look for search volume upwards of 400 (but normally less than 10,000) when you are first starting out.
This allows you to get rankings on board and drive targeted traffic to your website without it being too competitive.
Step 3: Onsite Optimisation Is Key
The third step I want to cover when looking at how small businesses can use SEO to grow revenue is onsite optimisation.
I have had clients get increased traffic and sales within just a few weeks, simply by focusing on fixing some of their onsite optimisation. In fact, research has proven that websites that focus on fixing their onsite SEO often get the best rewards.
So how can you make sure your site is well optimised?
First, run your website through a free tool like Screaming Frog and make sure the site has no broken internal and external links. Fix or remove any that show up.
Make sure all your images are optimised for keywords or brand terms. One of the easiest ways to do this is to use a variation of the keyword or brand name as the file save name when you download the image in the first place.
Make sure each page of your site has a keyword focus and that the focus keyword is mentioned enough times on each page. If possible, make sure that the URL is related to your keyword or keyword group too.
Ensure each page has a H1 header, internal and external links, that its images are optimised and that calls to action (CTAs) are clear.
Then make sure each page has a meta description that includes the keyword and a call to action.
Lastly, check your site speed and mobile friendliness. You can do both of these things for free on Google. Simply go to Google and search for a site speed test and enter your domain name, and do the same for the mobile-friendly test.
So these are the 3 main steps your small business can take to help it use SEO to grow its revenue. Following these key steps, I’ve seen clients book out their available slots months in advance, increase turnover by over 200% and increase their traffic by over 1000x!
Just remember to keep checking the quantifiable results every month or so to make sure you are on the right track, and before you know it your website will be making money on autopilot thanks to SEO.