Thanks to digital marketing, the term “small business” now holds a lot more weight than it once did. While large corporations have the luxury of a bigger budget and heighten workforce, digital marketing now allows your small business to compete in a way that gives you a fighting chance. Now let’s be honest; will your small hardware store ever trump Home Depot on search engines? Probably not but by applying the right practices, you can pop up as number two. Not every consumer is going to want to check out Home Depot, which will make your business the next best thing.
Whether or not you believe in this methodology, it’s a known fact that competing with bigger brands on search engines is impossible without SEO. For those that are unaware, SEO or search engine optimization is the digital marketing practice of using keywords, meta descriptions and tags, as well as the overall coding of your website to increase your search ranking. The wonderful thing about SEO is that it practically levels the playing field for small and large businesses alike. When it comes to SEO, there’s nothing that a larger corporation can do that you cannot accomplish.
We’re going to take you through some of the necessary steps to using SEO to effectively compete with your larger competitors on search engines. Keep in mind that you still may require the assistance of an SEO specialist but as far as tactics and practices go, these few should provide you with somewhat of a guideline. Let’s get started!
Social Media is a Must
Even if you’re not on social media, you can bet that your competitors are. Believe it or not but establishing a social media presence is a major factor in SEO. Search Engines look for websites that contain links to social media accounts like Facebook, twitter, and LinkedIn. From there they check to ensure that your accounts are posting relevant content that is engaging with audiences. Type your biggest competitor into google right now and we guarantee that their social media accounts appear right beneath their website. Unlike most things related to digital marketing, social media is absolutely free, which means there’s no reason you shouldn’t be using it.
Use Keywords Your Competitors Find Too Long
Tired of coming second on search engines? Well, be more specific. Large companies already have their SEO strategy down as far as which areas are being targeted. This, on the other hand, provides you with an opportunity target small geographic areas like your town or county. In order to do so, try using keywords that your competitors may find too long. Where Home Depot may use the phrase “hardware store”, you can use “Hardware Store in Garden City”. This way, consumers in your area will be more drawn to your location rather than traveling a little further to the big guy.
Get to Writing Content
The reason there may not be that much content on your competitor’s website is because there doesn’t need to be. However, because you’re considered the underdog, you may need to work a little harder to increase your search ranking. That means creating content like your life depends on it. Whether you’re creating videos, blog posts, social media, or just website copy about your products and services, it’s your job to show visitors and search engines that your website has something to offer. Be warned; your content should be of quality and relevant to your brand. Creating content without a purpose can lead to search engines catching on and decreasing your search ranking.
Think about Your Website’s Design
SEO encompasses many aspects of digital marketing including web design. Whoever you decide to bring on to handle your SEO should know the ins and outs of your website’s design. Little things like load times, page requests, and mobile responsiveness can all affect your ranking on search engines. Rest assured that your competitors have their website’s functionality down to a tee. Search engines pick and choose which aspects of your site’s design are most important from day to day so it’s best to stay on your toes. Ensuring that everything is up to par is the only way keep up with your competitors on search engines.
SEO has changed the way we view competition on the digital landscape. With the help of a sound SEO strategy, your small business can appear alongside and even above larger corporations on sites like Goggle, Yahoo, and Bing. The key is to continue to work on establishing your digital presence while keeping an eye on the competition. Best of Luck and check out our other digital marketing blogs for additional information!