Boosting your business’s search engine optimization is crucial to potential customers finding your company rather than your competition. It is the age of the Internet and if you don’t have a Web site now, your business has a very slim chance of reaching its full potential. Businesses spend hundreds of dollars paying a Web designer to create a user-friendly, informational and eye-pleasing Web site, but what good is an excellent Web site if no one ever sees it? That’s where search engine optimization comes in. A great Web site is virtually useless if no one ever knows how to find it, or if your potential customers are typing in keywords in their search bar and your competitors are the only ones showing up in the results. How do you avoid this online presence nightmare? Dip a toe, or jump right into the world of search engine optimization. Even people who don’t have a huge budget have affordable options for boosting their business’s search engine optimization.
Follow these 8 easy tips to start moving your site up in the search engine rankings now:
1. Participate in link exchanges. One affordable or sometimes free search engine optimization method is linking to your site from other sites. The more sites that link to you, the more relevant your site appears to the search engines. A link directory is a site you can submit a link to your site to. It is usually free, but some link directories require a small fee to submit your site for a lifetime. A link directory editor then reviews your site to make sure it is relevant to the category you submitted to. You can submit to as many link directories as you have time for and it will appear to search engines that you have more relevant links, therefore boosting your page rank. Also potential customers may visit link directories and find your page. Another way to get more links to your site is to link from your blogs, Facebook page, Twitter account or Linked In account. Make sure they are relevant posts so it does not appear that you are spamming.
2. Write relevant Web copy that’s sprinkled with keywords and easy to read. Aim for a seventh or eighth grade reading level for the content. The writing on the homepage is the most important because it’s the first page people see and it usually has less than three seconds to win a visitor over before they click off.
3. Make sure you have a META title, description and keywords that follow search engine guidelines and use the best possible keywords. The META title should not be more than 70 characters, the META description should be less than 200. Make sure your META robots aren’t accidentally blocking your site. They should say “index, follow” if you want the Google bots to crawl that page.
4. Make your site user friendly. Including an organized site navigation along the top of the left side of your site, including a search bar, a site map for users and clear, concise information will make your visitors happy and want to return to your Web site. Also, don’t bombard your site with ads or a million photos, videos and flash. It will slow page loading time and make it hard for users to read the actual site information. White space is your friend when it comes to an organized site. Giving plenty of entry points, using bullets and breaking up the text makes it easier to read which will please your visitors. The happier the visitors are with your site, the more they will visit and link to it. An increase in site traffic and links means an increase in page rank on Google and other search engines.
5. Another affordable search engine optimization technique is, make sure your site is speedy. Google now takes site speed into consideration when ranking results. Google Webmaster Tools shows your site’s speed performance data. YSlow is a free tool from Yahoo! that suggests ways to improve Web site speed and Page Speed is a Firefox add on that evaluates your site’s performance and offers tips for improving it. Consider using flash, videos and photos less and useful text containing keywords more.
6. Make sure you have a catchy, memorable domain name. This will help make it easier for visitors to remember your site and return. Keep it short, sweet and relevant to your company.
7. Write informative and keyword enhanced articles. Writing articles that contain keywords is a great way to help create a better online presence. You may write your own articles or get them from article directories that allow you to post articles on your site (make sure to give proper credit to the author). Do not stuff articles with keywords or force keywords in. You don’t want your article to read awkwardly or for it to be obvious which keywords you are using. The quality and timeliness of the article is important because it will boost your company’s reputation.
8. Hire an affordable search engine optimization company if you don’t feel confident in your knowledge of SEO. A professional firm can work with your company’s budget to provide it with successful and ethical search engine optimization techniques to increase the site’s page rank.
By following these tips for search engine optimization, your Web site’s page rank will start growing without you going broke. Once the site starts moving up in the search results, it will gain more traffic and as a result you will gain more clients. Engage in as much ethical SEO as you can and you are more likely to surpass your competitors on the results page, which will allow potential clients to find you, not rival businesses.