Nobody wants to think of his own business as small. Although there is a universally-accepted scale classification (small, medium, large enterprises), as an owner you do not want your business to be perceived as not capable of growth and scalability. Now Search Marketing offers an opportunity for any small or large industry player to have a place on the niche map. Truth be told, search marketing isn’t the only channel that can multiply growth (and you shouldn’t put all your eggs in one basket). But search marketing is a basic, integral part of any business who wishes to tap the online market. Here are 6 Search Marketing Basics for the Small Business you can use as a guide.
In fact, one of the fundamental components of an online marketing campaign is a good search presence. In order to get your small business website achieve this, here are 6 tips on Search Marketing Basics:
1. Define your audience and their needs
Surprisingly, a lot of small-time business owners do not have a full grasp of what their type of audience is like. Understanding the person (his lifestyle, his needs, preferences, etc) will give you a hint on how he would probably conduct a search query to look for you. What does he look for in a product/service like yours? If you’re a local business, how do you think your neighborhood will find out about you?
This is related to the next point below:
2. Research on the search terms they use when looking for your type of product or service
The key is to boil down, filter down to the intent of the user. Search terms are keywords used by people when conducting a search on google.com, for example. If you know the intent behind a search (see item #1) – you’ll have a better clue on the type of queries your audience will use to find you. The most common mistake is pinning for a broad keyword, i.e. “tennis balls” – when actually, your only target is to sell tennis sports paraphernalia in your locale, i.e. “tennis balls for sale Atlanta”
3. Optimize your website based on these search terms and reader’s expectations
The goal is to make your site’s pages written and organized based on what each page is about. If one page is about reviews on tennis equipment brands – then create this section to reflect that. Use the relevant keywords you have researched on, then apply these on the site’s meta data, content body, and links. This process is part of on-page SEO (search engine optimization).
4. Create your content marketing plan – and stick to it!
Google AND real people favor great content. Great means useful and relevant. Content marketing has long been a fundamental element in any search or social campaign. For any brand who wants to grow, it is important to establish a content marketing plan – and be disciplined to stick to it.
A content marketing plans involves determining your target audience (personas), the type of content material that suits them, the content topics you will produce for them, and the frequency of publishing (like a content calendar). Content outreach is also necessary initiative in order to gain traction with your content marketing.
5. Track and measure results versus initiatives
Analytics plays a role in growth and improvement. You need to set your metrics right if you want to know if your search campaign is doing well. A basic statistic to monitor is your brand and non-brand organic search growth. What percentage of your total visits are attributed to people who look for you via querying your brand name? And how many of them were able to find you by using non-brand terms (i.e. product items). Where can you improve? Which terms should you build on? How is your brand growing through time?
Also, keep a keen eye on your content metrics. Which content initiatives are bringing in customers and followers for you?
Related Read: Find out about Website Analytics service
6. Keep improving your site. Bottom line: Create value for your target market
As any marketer knows, search marketing isn’t a one-time deal. It is continuous work to achieve gradual website improvement and business growth. There is always something to offer to your market. Keep on creating value for them – whether that is a newsletter subscription, a new product feature, or a customer service they can call on when they need to. Always aim for improvement.
Romela de Leon-Ortega is an experienced Search Strategist for small-scale businesses. She is a busy work-at-home professional, and a full-time mom. Contact her below for a FREE website consultation.
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