Mobile marketing, digital marketing, search engine optimization. When does it stop? Well, it doesn’t. The internet and the technology that drives it is constantly evolving and it takes a lot of effort to keep up with the ever-changing digital tactics. It can be confusing and time-consuming to keep up with the latest wave of digital change, but it’s in your business’ best interest to do so. And if you need some assistance and want to avoid common digital marketing mistakes, then don’t be shy about asking for help from search engine marketing experts.
Here are some digital tactics that may help your business website rank well in web searches.
Focus on Website Usability
Anyone who visits your site should be able to find exactly what they’re looking for without having to search all over every page. Just like the advanced user, search engine robots know the difference between a good website and a bad one. All else being equal, solid websites with clean code, user-friendly URLs and internal links structure will generally be ranked higher than sites with poor HTML, structural flaws and messy URLs.
The number of mobile users passed the number of desktop users in 2014. So, it’s not a question of whether or not you should incorporate mobile into your business; it’s a question of why haven’t you done so already? Nielsen collected data to understand the consumer’s mobile habits in the shopping process. One of the major findings was that the most common starting point for mobile research began on search engines, amounting to almost half of the consumers surveyed. If you don’t have the funds in place to develop and maintain a mobile app for your business, at least invest in creating a website with responsive design. You don’t want to lose potential business just because your site doesn’t automatically resize to fit your customer’s smart phone or tablet screen when they do a mobile search.
Write About Current Events
Google recently made a change to their algorithm that slightly affects what shows up in the SERPs in the ‘news’ section of Google’s Knowledge Graph – the featured information displayed under the targeted categories, such as ‘news’, ‘images’, ‘web’, etc. Featured sites are no longer just the typical news outlets like FOX News or CNN. Especially for niche topics, industry blogs might appear more frequently. This is a big advantage for content marketers who are aiming to rank for targeted queries and keywords. However, this doesn’t mean you should be writing about the Presidential candidates if you own a beauty salon. Relevance is key factor in search engine optimization and publishing fresh, quality content has always been a strong digital tactic.
Produce Relevant, High Quality Content
Don’t underestimate the power of Google’s search algorithm. With innumerable data points, Google can easily identify low-quality footprints and pick out sites that produce inconsistent, irrelevant information. The relevancy and quality of your business’ content are two critical factors that can influence your ranking in the SERPs. Create all-original content, fact-check your work and cite reputable sources as needed. Be sure to focus on keywords that are relevant to your business.
Clean Up Spam Links
While Google sees external links as votes for your website, spammy links are like votes against you. Among other reasons, a site may be considered “spammy” if they have thin content and hundreds of links to random, poor quality sites. If your link is on pages like this, get it off ASAP. Your site can be severely penalized by Google’s Penguin algorithm, regardless if you created these links or not. Every month or so, take a look at your backlink profile, identify the bad links to your business’ site, and request to have them removed.
Secure Your Website
Encryption used to not matter as much in the search world. But after Google announced in August 2014 that HTTPS encryption may impact rankings, it’s more likely to help you. Thus far, it’s only affected a small amount of search queries, but it’s worth the investment. Not only for Google ranks, but also for the security of the information provided by people visiting your business website.
If you want your small business to be found online, then it’s critical to get up to speed on the latest digital tactics. In a nutshell, follow digital marketing best practices and develop a mobile-friendly site with high-quality content.