I guess that Small Business SEO is not something that has been top of your mind.
Most small business owners are extremely busy people.
Juggling tasks and responsibilities that cover HR manager, Marketing, Web Design, Sales, Business Admin, Service Delivery.
These businesses are usually owner-operated and it is rare that the owner is supported by a team.
A lot of the time, the business is being managed by a solo-superhero.
It’s a lot for any one person to do.
It’s easy to forget or even ignore fundamentals (like SEO) that could make your life a lot easier and get your business where it needs to be a lot faster.
Small Business SEO Isn’t An Optional Extra
Essential tactics to your business growth like SEO can sometimes take a back seat.
And, I totally get it, when you’re the one doing everything yourself, you need to prioritise and something like SEO can seem like an optional extra.
Especially if you are not clear on why you should see SEO as an investment rather than just another business cost with no return on investment (ROI).
SEO is an essential part of your online business growth but many small business owners are making critical Small Business SEO mistakes that are costing them customers.
So, instead of SEO helping them attract customers to their business instead they are unwittingly repelling them.
The 4 Small Business SEO Mistakes That Are Costing You Customers
SEO Mistake N°1: Not Claiming and Optimising Your Google My Business Page
The fact that Goole My Business is owned by Google automatically makes it important for SEO.
So, if you haven’t already claimed and optimised your Google My Business page, following these steps:
- Click here to claim your page
- Provide all information that Google asks for, including your business address, phone number, URL, social links, map, hours, menu, and prices.
- Use your most important local keywords in your descriptions.
- Add pictures and relevant images to your listing.
- Regularly post on your Google My Business page (just as you should with your blog)
BONUS TIP: I use StoryChief’s Social Media Collaboration Tool to post to my Google, LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter profiles, simultaneously, in a couple of clicks.
SEO Mistake N°2: Not Optimising Your Website for Mobile Devices
“If you don’t have a mobile-friendly and mobile-optimized website, you need to take action immediately. You can’t wait any longer.”
– Kris Jones, Founder & CEO, LSEO.com
Mobile search is everything when it comes to local SEO.
In fact, up to 70% of web traffic happens on a mobile device.
That number should not be ignored.
Here are some of the key things to improve to optimize your site for mobile:
- Improve your page’s loading time – the optimal loading time is under 2.5 seconds. Test your site’s current speed using Test My Site Google or GT Metrix.
- Do mobile user testing and make sure that your menus and buttons are easy to navigate on mobile.
- Make sure your content doesn’t require horizontal scrolling (or squinting) to be read on a mobile device.
- Make sure common actions and requests are easy for mobile users. In other words, make it easy for them to find directions to your store, view your prices, subscribe to your list, make a purchase, or follow you on social media.
SEO Mistake N°3: Not Removing Broken Links
“A broken or dead link is a link that you click but doesn’t work or doesn’t take you to the page you were meant to see. … When the link is broken, what you see instead is a 404 not found error page that tells you that the page you’re looking for is not available.”
Broken links can occur when you change the URL of a page or remove content from your site. Not only can broken links hurt your SEO efforts, but they are also frustrating for your users.
If you don’t fix these broken links they can eventually damage your Google rank and you might be losing customers because of it.
You can try going through your site and checking each link individually – but if you’ve got a complex site with a lot of pages, that can take a long time.
Instead, consider using a broken link checker to help you test your site, identify broken links, and make it easy for you to fix them.
SEO Mistake N°5: Not Focusing on Reviews
“86% of consumers read reviews for local businesses (including 95% of people aged 18-34).”
You cannot afford to neglect your online reviews.
Requesting and proudly displaying reviews can seriously help you grow your business.
Here are a few things to do to improve your online reviews:
- Claim your business listings on Google My Business (see above), Yelp, and other review sites.
- Check your information to make sure it’s accurate.
- Ask customers to review your business. If you’ve got regulars, you can simply ask them to leave a review. Link to your Yelp or Google My Business page on your website and print the URLs on your receipts.
- Ask your Facebook followers to review your business on Facebook.
- Designate a person to handle reviews, including responding to negative and positive reviews quickly.
BONUS TIP: Reach out to customers who have left you a detailed or inspiring review and ask them to write or record a video testimonial.
Then use this testimonial to conclude a powerful case study of how you helped this customer.
A basic case study structure you can use is:
- Explain the customer’s problem
- Explain the initial assessment you made of the problem
- Explain the step-by-step solution you employed to solve the problem
- Explain the results and/or transformation the customer experienced following the implementation of your solution
- Use the testimonial to explain (in their own words) how the client feels about your solution
Do this is on a regular basis and post the case study on your website and distribute it to your social media accounts.
As long as your potential customers are using the internet to actively search for your type of solutions, you need to invest in SEO for the medium and long-term growth of your business.
These 4 small business SEO mistakes should not be ignored. Avoiding them will help you attract more targeted website visitors and help you consistently grow your business.