At LicenseLogix, we carry the weight of business licensing to free you to do what you do best: run your business. And our support of your growth doesn’t end there. We form partnerships with businesses designed to save you time and money. We share special savings, insights, and other valuable resources to help you manage and grow your business. In partnership with Quickbooks, we’ve launched our Powering Your Business blog series to offer insights and intel on how to bring your business to the next level.
Four SEO Trends for Small Businesses in 2021
By Barbara Jackson, originally published on Quickbooks.com
Shopping looked quite different 20 years ago. If you wanted a new TV, you would go to an appliance store and ask a salesperson about the different models. The salesperson would walk you through the features and pricing of each model in stock, and then inevitably point out to one that he or she recommended, saying it is the “most popular,” or “the best in the market.”
Today, instead of asking a salesperson about products, consumers ask Google. Through a simple search, Google provides results that match your search query to help you find what you’re looking for. Chances are, potential customers have gone to Google to search for a business similar to yours. If Google cannot find your business in its database, it will not show your business in the results. This is why SEO is so important.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the key for being discovered on Google. The better your SEO is, the higher you will rank in relevant search results. Here are four top SEO trends to help small businesses get discovered:
- Optimize your Google My Business profile. The first step is to claim your Google My Business page. This is a free service that lists your business’ name, website, address, phone number, relevant photos, and hours of operation. Your Google My Business page is a helpful resource for your customers to learn more about your business. Make sure that all of your information is correct on your Google My Business profile. Would you want a potential customer to drive to the wrong address, or show up on a day you're closed? Of course not. Up-to-date information not only keeps potential customers from seeking out a competitor, but also boosts your SEO ranking.
- Unlock the power of Google reviews. Google reviews are becoming increasingly popular, and they help you get found online. The more reviews you have, the better your chances are of showing up on Google's local pack. Through your Google My Business page, you can collect and respond to Google reviews, helping gain valuable insights on your customers' experiences, and rank higher in relevant search queries.
Why do reviews matter in the first place? Reviews offer social proof to prospective customers. Few people want to spend their hard-earned dollar on a product that they know little about. When other people recommend a product, it assures the prospective customer that they are making a good purchasing decision. In fact, nearly 95 percent of shoppers read online reviews before making a purchase.
If your business doesn't have any reviews, prospects are more likely to seek out a competitor who does. In addition, Google reviews are another determining factor in SEO ranking. Unlock the power of Google reviews to establish social proof and get found in local searches.
- Keep up your business listings. Chances are, your business details are listed in more places than just your Google My Business page. There are many popular listing and review websites, such as Angie's List, Yelp, Foursquare, and Yellow Pages. For you to rank in relevant search results, it's important that your business information is consistent across the web.
The most important data for your business listings is your NAP –the name, address, and phone number of your business. It is common for businesses to move locations or change phone numbers over the years. However, if you aren't diligent about updating that information in your listings, you are hurting yourself in more ways than one.
First, you could be missing out on potential customers by giving them outdated information. Second, having a consistent, up-to-date NAP across your online listings helps you rank higher in SEO. So, if your NAP is inconsistent and outdated, this will hurt your SEO. Make sure you keep all your business listings up-to-date with the most recent information about your business.
- Optimize for voice search: Can Alexa find you? Whether it's through Apple, Google, or Amazon, almost everyone has a smart home device. Even my grandmother loves Alexa! One key way for your business to hop on this voice search trend is to optimize your website and Google My Business page accordingly. Here's how:
- Make sure your content is conversational. Since people speak to their smart homes just like they do to their friends and family, you'll want to make sure your content matches that tone.
- Focus on keywords. If you're a cafe, you'd want to be sure you pop up for questions, such as this one: “Alexa, where can I study and get coffee downtown?” Make sure relevant keywords are present on your site and Google My Business page.
- Include details about your business' location on your website and Google My Business page. This will help you appear in local search results. With 22 percent of voice queries being for local content, this is the perfect opportunity for your business. Location details can be landmarks, neighboring businesses, or common phrases people use to describe your neighborhood and/or business.
Take action to get discovered and grow your business
And, with that, you have the building blocks to create better SEO for your small business! Help your business get discovered by utilizing Google reviews, Google My Business, featured snippets, and voice search. On just the other side of a Google search, someone is waiting to find your business. Don't miss out on discovering who they are!
For more information on how Quickbooks can help your business, click here.
For more information on LicenseLogix's license filing service and secure web-based Client License Information Center (CLiC) click here.