All your digital marketing efforts are geared towards getting your brand in front of customers. Online, the main presence of your business is your website, which your customers are likely to get to via a search engine. Search engines use algorithms to crawl the web for the results that will be most helpful to a searcher’s query. To get your website in the top results, optimization of your online presence is essential.
Know Your Target Audience and Answer Their Questions
Search engine optimization, SEO for short, includes all techniques that you can apply to your website to appear on the first page of a search engine results page. To boost your rankings, the main focus of SEO lies in answering your customer’s queries. To understand your target audience, ask yourself who they are and what their goals are. Imagine yourself in the position of your customer and what they would type in the search box to find your services or products.
Find the Most Valuable Keywords
Use the terms and phrases you come up with during your target audience brainstorm sessions and enter them in a keyword research tool. This is the starting point for your keyword research. SEO takes time and experimentation but here are some tips to help you pick valuable keywords to work with:
- Don’t just pick the keywords with the highest search volumes. A high search volume means more competition.
- Look at more specific phrases with lower search volumes. These long-tail keywords often convert better as customers with a more detailed query have already moved further down the sales funnel looking for a few more details before they buy.
- Look at what your competitors are doing. See what they rank for and any missed opportunities they might not have spotted. You can also go for a more aggressive strategy here and go for the keywords they rank for.
Apply Your Keywords and Create User-Friendly Content
Once you’ve performed thorough keyword research, make sure to apply your list of keywords to your website. Here’s how:
- Find topic clusters that you can turn into landing pages and blog posts.
- Keep your content easy to understand, informative, and valuable for your target audience.
- Avoid using one particular keyword or phrase as often as you can just to “please” the search engines and making your content unreadable. Always think about your users first and how you can create content that is helpful to them.
Don’t Forget About Local SEO
Even if you’re an international business and your physical address is not that important for your customers, make sure you have your Google My Business account set up correctly.
Check that your details in online directories like Yelp, Hotfrog, or Yellow Pages are up to date. This is your best chance at ensuring your brand is featured with the correct address details, phone number, and website link in Google’s knowledge panel, which is the box with information you get next to your search results.
Start asking your customers for reviews that can also be featured there. Create a link to send to your customers by searching for your business on Google Maps. Once your Google My Business account is set up, the Google maps result shows your business details including a link to your review page at the bottom of your company listing. You can copy and shorten this URL to make it easier for your customers to access your reviews page.
Build Your Brand Authority
SEO is an ongoing online marketing technique that constantly evolves, which means that you have to keep providing unique content for your rankings to improve. Create educational content and populate an FAQ page to rank in featured snippets, the question and answer box on a Google search results page. This helps with establishing expertise and brand authority by being the business with the answer to your customers’ questions.