Managing your SEO goals on a shoestring budget is an overwhelming challenge. With a limited number of SEO strategists in your team, achieving the goal of ‘a robust SEO strategy on a limited budget’ is hard but not impossible. Nowadays, owing to the importance of a visible online presence, every company has combined SEO into their digital marketing strategy. With an excess of options available to market your business, you need to be sure of choosing those strategies that are easy-to-implement and yet bring considerable returns. So, for startups and small businesses that are running low on marketing budget and yet want to compete with industry giants, we present a number of SEO strategies that will help you keep-up the pace:
Focus on Local SEO Optimization to Dominate Local Search
Website presence is a must and earning a strong local presence is essential for visibility, especially if you own a local business. Local SEO optimization is the key to start-off, so that your business ranks among the first positions on dominant search engines. One way to do that is by earning local citations which would help you get found online. You can build you local citations through the Wider Web, Local Business data platforms or Industry-specific platforms.
In the latest survey involving Local Search Ranking Factors, the experts rated citation related factors as making up approximately 13.31% and Google My Business as 19.01% of the Top 50 factors. GMB (Google My Business) provides a common gateway for businesses in all industries. You can set up your business account quite simply by logging in via email into Google and then filling a requisite form with company’s NAP (aka Name, Address, Phone number) details.
Points to keep in mind:
- mention the city/location of your business in the title tag;
- make sure the NAP information is correct and updated;
- optimize your content for the local customers;
- try to get authentic and natural reviews;
The accuracy and authenticity of your services plays a more important role over the mere online presence. Discrepancies in information, misleading information and irregularity in updating across different listings can damage your business image and create space for bad reviews. Think locally, act globally.
Optimize your design for mobile-friendliness
Mobile optimization for your business website is an absolute must. With the arrival of Google’s mobile-first index this year, there are a number of ranking factors that Google takes into account while calculating the rank of a webpage for mobile search. Besides content, titles, links and descriptions, it also considers the layout of the webpage, its accessibility, speed, location and even the position of Ads.
Hence, optimizing your website for mobile-friendliness with the user is absolutely necessary, while being easy-to-implement. You can start with platforms like WordPress which have a plethora of mobile-optimized themes to pick from.
Focus on thought leadership when creating content
“Content is king” in the marketing world. Content is at the core of today’s marketing strategies as businesses use websites and blogs to demonstrate their own expertise. So, while crafting a content strategy, think of creating and consistently delivering unique and relevant information that adds value to the readers. Find concerns that haven’t been addressed and then deliver solutions through your content.
Keep your content simple, short, unique, informative and scannable. Break down the points into subheadings and include bullet wherever possible. The reader appreciates you being respectful of their time. Incorporate visuals in your content plan to give-out information in a more engaging way.
Create a sitemap
Having a sitemap that is shaped out of a clear vision could be the driving factor to a website’s success. The sitemap of your website is an important communication tool between your site and the search engines. “Crawlability errors” are amongst the major reasons behind websites losing traffic. So, in order to increase your traffic results, you need to address the issue of crawlability right from the start of your SEO journey. A sitemap allows search engines to list all your website pages, for effective crawlability.
Online generation of a sitemap is quite easy. Google requires XML sitemap, while Yahoo and MSN require HTML sitemap. For sites hosted on most of the open-source content management system like WordPress, your sitemap is generated automatically by the Google XML Sitemaps Generator plugin.
Focus on making your metadata click-worthy
Optimizing your metadata is one of the best things you can do to get positive SEO results. The major elements in your meta-data are: Title, Meta description, URL.
First include your target keyword in the title and meta-descriptions. Effective meta descriptions are short snippets of information your audience can view from the search results that compel them to click on your website link. The meta description character limit by Google has been increased to “320” from 160 characters. Getting your URL structure short and right is also a crucial distinctive of SEO optimization. Always make sure that your target keyword is also a part of your URL.
For startups and small businesses, the best way to crack the SEO code is through strategies that offer them a uniform field similar to that of big companies. Now that you know the basics, you can work on preparing your website marketing strategy and optimize your website to increase your SEO dramatically without spending a cent.