Everyone’s talking about SEO for small business these days, aren’t they?
Is your website search engine optimised? Does SEO for small business actually work? What is search engine optimisation? Will your local business show up in Google searches? Why ISN’T it showing up in Google searches? All of this stuff — making your website ‘magically’ appear on Google so that people hire your services more or buy your products more — is SEO for small business. Optimising your business website so that Google likes it and recommends it to people who are looking for something just like it.
HOW IMPORTANT IS SEO FOR SMALL BUSINESS?
In the five minutes or so that you spend flicking through this blog post online, Google will have performed over 22,000,000 searches. According to internetlivestats.com, we (the people of planet Earth; not just you and I) are Google-searching something close to 75,000 times with every single second that passes. And that’s *just* Google; we’re not taking into account any of the other search engines that the internet has to offer.
75,000 searches per second.
4,500,000 searches per minute.
270,000,000 searches per hour.
That’s pretty bonkers, don’t you think?
It also shows you just how many people are using Google to find what they’re looking for in this day and age: A LOT!
The whole point of having a website for your floristry business is so that people on the internet can find you. Many businesses, particularly smaller ones, struggle when they don’t have an online presence – a website or social media page – to substitute the fast-decreasing amount of foot traffic. More consumers are choosing to stay in and purchase new things from the comfort of their own homes; and with lower or no overheads, the prices online are usually cheaper too. But this doesn’t just mean that you can set up a website and wait for those customers to come flocking. They probably won’t. Not without a little SEO assistance, anyway.
WHAT DOES SEO ACTUALLY DO?
When you optimise your website for search engines – SEO – you’re giving those search engines a little helping hand. Using simple steps and processes, you’re telling them exactly what your website is all about, what you offer, and how you can give a searcher [potential customer] what they’re looking for.
There are a lot of websites out there. Let’s just say that I’m a florist in Southend, Essex. Pretend for a moment. If I were to type in “florists in Southend”, I’d be met with hundreds of results. Maybe even thousands. And they’re all my competitors. Those sites on the first page of search engine results are going to get more traffic than those further down the list — on page 2, 3, and beyond. It’s been estimated that only 25% of browsers will actually click on page 2 and beyond, so appearing on that first page is super important.
But getting your business on that first page is no easy feat.
Just making a website won’t be enough to make your business appear in search engine results for “florists in your town”.
SEO for small business does that.
DO I NEED A BLOG FOR SEO?
In reality, no, you don’t need a blog. You can implement search engine optimisation steps for your website without a blog. Pinterest pins can be search engine optimised too, which can be used to promote your business. Pinterest is actually great for driving traffic to a blog or website, but it’s not overly great for localised traffic. A consumer is more likely to search for “florists in Southend” on Google, but “wedding day flower inspiration” on Pinterest.
A BLOG MAKES IT EASIER TO IMPLEMENT SEO
It gives you more opportunities to rank higher in Google and to target different blog keywords. If you aim for one relevant keyword per blog post and you have a list of 20 different keyword suggestions to target, you have 20 opportunities to get your site — and business — ranked higher in search engine results.
Having a blog also gives you a way to communicate with your potential customers, sharing information with them that might not be otherwise available on the site. Floristry-related blogs could cover everything from keeping your bouquet of flowers alive for longer to seasonal flowers and how they can be used within arrangements. I’ve written hundreds of flower-themed blog posts, and I’ve still got a whopping list of keywords, titles, and general suggestions to pick from. The possibilities really are endless.
Having that kind of information on a blog makes your site invaluable to customers. You aren’t just selling them a product or service; you’re giving them information, allowing them to get more for their money, and making yourself an authority or ‘expert’ within that industry.
“77% of Internet users read blogs.”
A BLOG GIVES YOU A WAY TO CREATE CONSTANT CONTENT
Publishing a new blog post gives you something new to talk about with your audience, not just through social media, but also through comments. You can share details of your floristry life that perhaps doesn’t fit on your social media platforms, or is too long a tale to fit there.
You can also create SHAREABLE content — stuff that *could* potentially pick up speed and go viral. Content that goes viral around the world probably isn’t going to immediately send your business (or profits) through the roof, especially when you’re trying to get people in the local area (if we’re still pretending I’m a florist, in Southend and surrounding towns/cities in Essex) to notice you. However, ‘going viral’ is a surefire way to get your name on the map, so to speak, and that’ll do great things for your business. I bet the “singing dentist” has bookings coming out of his eyeballs as a result of his viral videos. He’s just a local dentist, remember.
Admittedly, you don’t need a blog to go viral. Blogging has evolved — “microblogging”. It is now possible to have a blog-like setting on Facebook and Instagram, with longer captions. They can’t be as easily SEO’d as a blog can, though.
A BLOG BRINGS PEOPLE TO YOUR SITE EVEN WHEN THEY DON’T WANT TO BUY YOUR WARES OR SERVICES
Yes, of course you want people to visit your website because they want to buy something from you — your products or services. Wouldn’t it be super awesome if people came to your website to learn something too, though? Because they TRUST you and what you have to say?
That’s what a blog can do — it can build trust between your business and potential customers.
When customers TRUST you, they’re more likely to BUY from you.
Just pretend that I have the following blogs published on my Southend-based flower shop’s site –
- 5 Tips For Keeping Your Bouquets Alive For Longer
- 10 Red Bridal Bouquet Ideas For Winter Wedding Inspiration
- 5 Halloween-Themed Floral Arrangements You Need At Your Dinner Table
- Houseplants That Are Virtually Impossible To Kill
Blog posts #1 and #4 are what we content creators like to call “evergreen content”. They are pieces of content that are relevant all-year-long, just like evergreen trees. People are going to read them — on your site — any time of year.
Blog posts #2 and #3 are event and seasonal-specific blog posts. They’ll see increased bursts of activity around the times of the year they discuss — winter and Halloween, every year. They’ll also get a spattering of bridal interest throughout the year. Weddings do take a long time to plan!
I would incorporate my own floral arrangements into the blog posts, using bright and eye-catching [watermarked] images of them. And then I’d create beautiful Pinterest pins for them, sharing them for other people to use as inspiration.
You know what they say: imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Is anything really “new” on the internet anymore?
A BLOG KEEPS YOUR WEBSITE CONSTANTLY UPDATED
Google and other search engines LOVE constantly updated and refreshed blogs and sites. Old content is stale, irrelevant and probably won’t offer readers much in the way of value. Someone will have done it better since then, or the information will have changed entirely — as is often the case in my little social media and blogging world. Not only do I recommend having a blog on your small business website, and publishing new blogs fairly regularly, but also going back and updating the older content too, from time to time.
A BLOG GIVES YOU ESSENTIAL INTERNAL LINKS
I talked about this very recently, more specifically for bloggers, but it is advice that definitely applies to this situation too. When you have multiple posts published on your blog, you can link from one to another, and from other pages (such as sales or product pages) to them. This creates a little system of internal links, making it easier for search engines to make their way around your site, index every page, and then potentially display those pages higher up in the list of results when someone searches for the topic or keyword. Blog or not, definitely look more into internal links for your SEO for small business strategy.
Helpful blog post: The Easy-Peasy Guide to Using Internal Links in a Blog Post For SEO
A BLOG GIVES YOU THE OPPORTUNITY TO HIT MORE KEYWORDS
I know I’ve said this once or twice already, but keywords really can make the world of difference to how your site performs — but only when they are used in the right way. Keyword stuffing is not the right way. Buying backlinks is not the right way. Creating content that readers find easy to follow, interesting, and valuable, is the right way; combined with a good helping of SEO, including adding keywords where they feel appropriate and natural.
Helpful blog post: How to Use Keywords in a Blog Post for SEO – 9 Steps
To give you a little example of how a blog and SEO can make quite a difference to your website, I have a range of beauty reviews and posts on this blog, none of which I share to social media. There are a few Pinterest pins floating around that promote them, none of which do particularly well [humph], but after realising that I just wasn’t getting anywhere with them on Twitter/Facebook/Instagram/etc., I figured I would just stop creating them.
That was up until I’d seen my blog stats.
My beauty reviews *don’t* do very well on social media, but they get a lot of search engine traffic. The same can be said for my one (so far) fashion-related post on the blog. The L’Occitane Aqua Réotier Ultra Thirst-Quenching Gel review is my second most-visited post to date, and 99% of the views have come from search engines. My post comes up FIFTH in search engine results for “L’Occitane Aqua Réotier Ultra Thirst-Quenching Gel”.
The fourth most-read post on my blog, to date, is my review for the Collection Illuminating Touch Foundation. My post comes up THIRD in search engine results for “Collection Illuminating Touch Foundation Review”. It also comes up FIFTH for “Collection Illuminating Touch Foundation”.
Might not give them up just yet, then …
I’m also second in search results for “Givenchy Noir Couture Volume Mascara Review”, eighth for “Instagram tips for bloggers”, second for “should you repin other people’s content on Pinterest?”, fourth for “Christmas blog post ideas”, and third for “blog post ideas for Valentine’s Day” <<< all Google page one. [Only 25% of peeps click on page 2 and beyond.]
I’m targeting the crap outta those long-tailed keywords … and it’s working in my favour!
Search engine optimisation — getting to the first page of Google results — isn’t going to happen overnight, although there are going to be companies that promise you immediate results. This is usually achieved with dodgy, fake, or irrelevant backlinks that could actually harm your SEO for small business status, not boost it. Starting a blog and paying attention to well-written SEO content, on the other hand, is proven to help businesses. If you’d like to give it a try for yourself, why not let me know! I write blog content for a living 😊
I hope this blog post was helpful for you today, but please give me a shout if you have more questions. Don’t forget to take a peek around the other SEO posts on my blog.
Thanks for stopping by, have an awesome day! 🌹
SEO FOR BUSINESS – FURTHER RESOURCES + READING: