Being a Web strategist that specializes in SMBs (small to mid-sized businesses), I’m often asked about small business internet marketing ideas. Being a search engine marketing specialist, (full disclosure: my opinion could be just a bit biased but) I believe that there is no better way to market a small business online than with organic search engine optimization.
The return on investment (ROI) is just unmatched by any other marketing methods.
This post aims to answer an average small business owners questions about search engine marketing and ideally provide some sound and valuable small business internet marketing ideas that can be implemented very quickly and easily. We will be addressing things like 1) how it works, 2) how to get started, 3) how to know if it’s working, and 4) some very important things to keep in mind throughout the process.
Search Engine Marketing is a Game of Words
The all-important rule is that search engine marketing is all about the words. If I could give you one piece of advice it would be to use words that you think your ideal customers would use, in certain places throughout the page.
What are the important places to use the words?
In what we call, page “SEO Points”. These points consist of each page’s
- URL (think, www.YourSite.com/keyword-that-user-would-use)
- Title (source code – <title>Insert Keyords Here | YourSite.com</title>
- Meta keywords (another source code thing – not visible to users)
- Meta description (see above)
- Copy (the actual visible writing on a page)
- Linking (the words that appear in the blue clickable part of a link)
Of those things, certain ones are more important than others. Page URLs and titles are very important. Meta keywords, not so much anymore. But linking is arguably the most important.
Let me give you an example.
My goal for this post (other than to educate my existing and potential clients around Baltimore and Washington D.C.) is to be on the first page of Google when somebody types in “small business internet marketing ideas”. With that in mind, it would be ideal for me if somebody clicked on the “Contact us” page and wrote us an email to become a potential client.
Stick with me.
To optimize my linking, instead of saying…Click here to contact us (the words “click here” in the link text) – I would instead say contact us for more small business internet marketing ideas!
I can hear the lightbulbs going off as I type.
So here it is, step-by-step plan:
1. Contact whoever it is that administers your site
2. Brainstorm up a list of keyword phrases that you think potential customers of yours would search for in Google
3. Thread those keywords through the SEO Points, or key places on your own site
Another important tip is to have an analytics tracking program. These simply help answer questions like, how many users find your site, where they’re from geographically, what search terms they used to find you, how long they stay on the site, and other information.
If you don’t have analytics, you can get Google Analytics for free. It’s awesome. And easy to install. Just grab a little snippet of code and paste it before the closing body tag on each of your pages (</body>). Otherwise, the effort is kinda pointless. You won’t know if it’s having a positive effect or not.
Let the analytics run for 2 weeks to one month so that you can establish a baseline for performance. After you implement the changes, what you’ll likely find is that SEO is probably one of the best, most economical, highest returning small business internet marketing ideas around. Depending on how much internet traffic you currently get, you will very likely experience a quick bump between 10 and 200 percent!
It works. Believe me. Think about it. You found us, didn’t you?
Contact us for a free consultation…Before your competitors do.