When I talk to other business owners, especially ones who are not in niche fields, there is often the feeling that doing any sort of optimization of their website for search engines like Google, Bing and Yahoo would be pointless. The though is that they just can’t overcome the marketing budgets of their larger counterparts.
It does SEEM that way, and certainly larger companies and expensive marketing firms would like everyone to think that, but it isn’t actually true and here’s why…
Changes in Google…
In the last few years, popular search engines, especially Google have gone through a lot of changes and these changes have actually made it easier for the little guys to compete.
Back before 2012 (before the infamous Penguin update), in order to get ahead in SEO, you needed to have a TON of incoming links (links to your website coming from other websites). I used to spend countless hour submitting websites to directories, contacting website owners for link exchanges and trying leverage anyway I could think of to get the number of incoming links up. To be honest, I HATED doing SEO during this time! It took forever and it was hard for small businesses to compete in this atmosphere because EVERYONE had the roadmap to doing SEO effectively, but bigger companies had more resources to get it done faster.
What the Penguin update (and subsequent other updates) did was essentially put everyone on a more even playing field. In recent years the amount of incoming links you have is no longer the most important factor. The most important factor is actually having great, relevant content!
Sure, links, page authority and all that jazz still factor into the equation but you CAN absolutely beat big companies with huge budgets by simply having well written content that uses the keywords that best describe your business in a way that engages your visitors and gets them to click on other pages of your site and come back!
In some ways, it’s actually EASIER for small businesses when you consider the following…
Small businesses can connect to customers on a more personal level. If you are an owner operator or a small business with just a few employees. It is very easy for you to get to know your customers. They have a relationship with you and therefor have a relationship with your business that they just cannot have with a large corporation. It makes it much simpler for you to pinpoint what your average customer is looking for and provide that content for them. You can also use that relationship to get more useful feedback.
Small businesses can make changes more quickly. People say that the only constant in life is change but that is especially true for SEO. Search engines change their algorithms everyday but they don’t actually tell anyone what these changes consist of. This can seem daunting for many small business owners but small businesses actually have the advantage here. When a large company wants to make changes in their web strategy, it takes a lot of time. Meetings need to be scheduled, people in a position of authority need to make decisions and sign off on the changes. As a small business owner, you can just try stuff! As long as your website has great relevant content, you can go on a marketing adventure and come up with creative “outside of the box” ways to drive traffic to your website. Just be sure to measure the results with analytics so you can record what’s working and what’s not.
Here at Zebralove Web Solutions, we love to chat about Small Business SEO and Maine SEO. Give us a call (207) 221-5822, send an email or follow the link above to see our Search Engine Optimization plans. Zebralove Web Solutions is a web development and web marketing company located in Maine.