As a small business owner, you face the challenge of not only building a book of business but also the question of ”Where do I spend appropriate time and money?” Let’s face it: SEO is an art where practically anybody can dabble in the basics. I hear it all the time from people who call me, “I know just enough SEO to be dangerous.”
It can prove quite profitable to master every nuance of SEO and search engine algorithms. However, small business owners often get wrapped in marketing myths that ultimately cost them money, time, and stress. It is time to debunk these myths and share which SEO and marketing practices can be beneficial for any sized business.
Myth 1. My business is too small for SEO
Not true. If you are truly a “small business,” look to local SEO such as reviews, photos, surveys, Google My Business, and local newspapers. Speak to your neighbors, and gain attraction from your local community.
Make sure your website is easily accessible and includes the information customers are searching for such as a menu, class schedule, product availability, etc.
Myth 2. You need to be on every social media platform.
False, you do not have to be on every social media page to gain attraction. Select the platforms that work best for you, ones that you can easily update and navigate effectively.
Rather than wasting time, money, and effort trying to update every single social media page, you could most likely use that time and money more efficiently elsewhere.
Myth 3. I don’t need a website.
If you have a business in today’s modern age of digital, you need a website. Even if you only have a single page site, this gives you credibility and recognition that you are in tune with the technology of today.
Think about it from a customer’s point of view: if they are searching for a pet store in town, they are most likely going to use Google or another search engine. If you don’t have a website, you just missed out on potential business.
In addition, if you are on Yelp or another review platform, you are more likely to follow the link to the website to learn about the professionalism of the business in addition to the reviews.
Myth 4. I need long blog articles to drive traffic.
While it is important to have articles long enough to answer your users’ questions, that does not mean to bore them with lengthy, irrelevant information. We live in a fast-paced society where people want information quickly and instantly. They simply don’t have time to read through long stories when their questions can be answered in one or two sentences.
Ever see those recipe sites with huge, long stories before giving you the recipe? When was the last time you read all of that? Most of us scroll right to the recipe ingredients and directions.
Myth 5. My target audience needs to be wide and varied.
“Niching” down can actually help your business. Most business fields are flooded with competitors and it is important to separate yourself from the pack. Stand out, and be the expert in your area. Narrow down your target audience and effectively reach the right customers.
This allows you to potentially become the go-to for referrals from people in those niches. Think of how many lawyers you know or have seen in advertisements. Now consider which ones have stood out to you because they have found their niche, whether it be through a phrase or target clientele. I already know it’s Ken Nugent when I hear the phrase, “One call that’s all…”.
Myth 6. Email marketing is just spam.
Not true, especially for small businesses. Use email marketing in effective ways that will absolutely bring people to your website.
Give away useful information, coupons, and be creative. Send emails you would want to receive. Use catchy subject lines that would lead to you wanting to open that email.
Think like your customer.
Myth 7. My industry is too boring to write about.
If your industry isn’t as exciting as Cirque du Soleil, that doesn’t mean it is too boring to write about. You just need to get creative in your writing.
Use real-world experiences and things that people can relate to. Keep things light, short, and informative without sounding boring. Trust me, I have read blogs on income tax that I’ve found interesting because the author opened with a joke and based it on how I can save money.
SEO is one of the best practices to gain attention online, no matter how small your business is. Sure, there are numerous myths out there that “hustlers” use to steer you in another direction. Don’t fall into the marketing myth trap.
There are SEO practices and resources available that are quite simple to try and in a few months can prove successful. It is also important to talk about your SEO experiences with your peers. They can serve as your audience and offer helpful insight into maximizing your SEO growth potential. They may even be trying things that you probably haven’t considered in order to drive traffic to their websites.
Final words wisdom: Keep experiencing and trying new things, and find the SEO strategy that works best for you.
Need help with your content and SEO strategy? Check out available Search Hermit packages.