SEO: Your Small Business Secret Weapon.
In September of 2018, I wrote a series of blog posts that was part of a partnership with the city of Pensacola. We told people where to stay, where to eat, what beach bars were a “must”, and how to make the most of a night in downtown. The posts went up and I checked the series off my list and didn’t give it much thought. And then 3 months later, I noticed my web traffic was spiking. I was getting YouTube views, Instagram followers, and emails from people asking about my trip. I remember thinking, “Why is God rewarding me with all of this digital traffic?!”
So I hired an SEO specialist to break it down for me… enter Alison. She analyzed my web traffic and told me that the blogs I published 3 months earlier were written in a way that was accidentally increasing my odds of coming up in a Google search (hello, happy accident). I was getting free traffic… all of my digital platforms were growing… and I wasn’t paying a dime.
I wanted to keep up my business momentum, but I knew I couldn’t do it alone. So I flew out to Pensacola the next week, interviewed Ali over pizza/wine, and asked her to join the Sip Dine Design Team. Since we brought Ali onboard I’ve been on an SEO bender… we’ve created a new SEO strategy for our site and traffic is up 150% in one month it👏is👏working👏y’all 👏.
I’m making SEO my bitch and I want every other small business owner out there to do the same. As I said in our female friday series launch, I’m making a commitment in 2019 to use my social channels as a platform to empower other entrepreneurs. So I’ve asked Ali & my team to create a series of tools that will help other small businesses reap the rewards of SEO, and I’m picking up the tab (which if I’m being honest is semi-scary for me, but here goes nothing). Consider Sip Dine Design your free team of SEO small businesses coaches.
So what is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization, and it’s a way to optimize your website so that search engines, like Google, can “read” and understand the content of your site. It’s important that search engines are able to quickly find and understand your website, because that’s how they determine which sites are ranked first when someone types a keyword into the search box. For example: you type “pizza” into Google’s search box, and a list of results (SERPs) show up. If you own a pizza restaurant, you want your website to be listed (aka ranked) first. This is because people are inherently lazy when they’re searching online; think about it, when was the last time you searched for something and clicked on the 2nd page of the Google SERPs to find it? Not often, I’m guessing. But also, why would you look on the 2nd page when there’s a list of acceptable responses to your query on the first page? Consumers trust search engines; they believe that if Google or Yahoo or whoever trusts your site enough to list them first, then they should trust them as well. Thus, if you want to get your website noticed, you at least need to appear on the first page... if not in the first 3 spots. According to RealiableSoft.net, “the majority of search engines users are more likely to click on one of the top 5 suggestions in the results pages.” In addition to getting your website noticed, SEO has a number of other significant benefits.
Why is SEO important for your business?
Optimizing your website for SEO has numerous other benefits besides making it searchable for Google. For example:
If you’ve improved your website navigation so that Google can index it easily, chances are you’ve made changes that make it easier for your target audience to navigate your site as well. User experience on your site plays a huge factor in how your website is ranked, not to mention it directly impacts your sales as well. If a customer can’t figure out how to find a product or make a purchase on your website, they’re going to quickly move on to another site that’s easier to navigate. Which brings me to my next point...
SEO helps you get ahead of your competition; if you and another site are selling the same product(s) to the same target audience, whichever site is optimized the best will gain the most traffic and earn the most in sales.
SEO is relatively cheap, and it’s a long term investment. You don’t have to spend a ton of money to excel at SEO, you just have to be willing to put the necessary time in to learn about (and keep up with) the ever-changing market trends. In addition, while you do have to consistently work at SEO, it’s pay-off is long term. A change you implement now could continue to bring you traffic 5 years from now. The more you develop your website’s SEO, the more credible it will be in the future.
There are countless other benefits to SEO, but these are some of the most important. Trust me- taking the time to learn about and invest in SEO now will pay off in the long run (and some in the short term as well!) If you’re not seeing the kind of traffic you want, your sales are in a slump, or your content isn’t being shared, look at your Google analytics and analyze your SEO. A few minor changes today could lead to big improvements tomorrow.
Want to increase your SEO but don’t have the time to train yourself how to do it? We also offer SEO optimized content packages to set-up your small business for success. They’re based on the exact same strategy we’ve used for my own website which has increased my SEO by 2000%. Send me an email and we can chat email@example.com.
Have specific questions that we didn’t answer? Comment in the section below and my team or I will respond as best we can.