Every business in today’s world has web presence in one way or the other. All businesses irrespective of their size whether it be big or small are competing for the topmost position in search results. People spend a great amount of time doing online search as it has now become a standard feature of day to day life, and so search marketing has gained wide popularity.
Large companies like Walmarts already have thousands of links, large volume of age old contents, millions of online visitors etc. So, there is no wonder they normally appear on the first page of the search results when searched for any commercial products. For every business, regardless of the industry and stream, there will be a competitor who is larger, made huge investments and worked harder to make them visible on the top of the search result list. A small business with less experience and resources must do special techniques in order to compete with such companies.
Search Engine Optimization is no longer confined to those companies who have been present for a longer time, or with most number of links, or with vast content. It solely is about those pages which is most relevant for a searcher. If you follow some strategies, any small business can overcome such competitions. Let’s take a look at some of them.
1. Specialize in a niche
Small businesses must first give focus on the niche. They should cover numerous areas of expertise as possible for better search visibility. Example, if your business deals with house maintenance segments like roofing, plumbing, wiring, painting, cooling, heating etc. then it will get wide coverage and chances of appearing in search results due to the queries from any of the foresaid keywords.
However, if you are planning to compete with really big competitors then it is better to put all your efforts on fewer areas of specialization. With large areas of focus, you get numerous keywords but the relevance for each one will be low. Focusing on fewer keywords gives better and higher visibility. Example, if your specialization is painting, then you should be the best in that field, even though the visibility for other maintenance fields are less.
2. Engage in a long-tail keyword strategy
Google looks for long-tailed keywords like “tips for installing heater in a toiler in upstairs”. It is easier to get higher ranks for long-tailed keywords than getting higher ranks for short-tailed keywords. They might bring less traffic but it is beneficial for small businesses. Using long-tailed keywords are like sacrificing minimal ranking potential with popular keywords to get maximum ranking potential with less known keywords. Long-tailed keywords normally appears I the course of writing. It is possible to find and use long-tailed keywords by checking “The Rise of the Long-Tail Keyword for SEO” and “How to Find Long-Tail Keywords Once You’ve Identified Your Primary Keywords.”
3. Leverage locality for optimization
Target local audience as local search is more important and relevant. It is efficient to be a best in your locality than be an average in the whole country. Irrespective of whether you have business in national or international level, it is always best to have a niche market share and compete in any kind of specialization in a local area. Some of the strategies to follow in order to build a reputation in your city are listed.
Get involved in your community and create a name by attending events. Whenever possible try to participate in events like fairs, festivals or any get togethers. This will help you to get more business either by providing promotions or discounts. Also, you can make your presence online as well which will boost our SEO.
The content in your website should be excellent with details about your company, your vision and mission, press releases of high authority inbound links etc. and make sure to use local-specific keywords. In this way, you get publicity and build local optimized content.
Local reviews are important for local SEO, Directory and aggregation sites such as Yelp are essential and receive huge boost in priority. Currently those sites with large positive reviews are ranked higher than those sites with negative reviews. Yelp has gained much importance that Yelp profiles have higher ranks than the official pages of the companies they represent.
This gives small business a new opportunity to reach good ranks without the need to produce new contents or inbound links. Instead they can concentrate on creating good, positive reviews from the customers.
Local search is becoming more local and with this trend you can defeat even large competitors especially if those competitors are also from your same locality.
Google is specialized in identifying and classifying neighborhoods within a large city. So, you can make use of neighborhood-specific keywords instead of city or state names. Always make sure to do research before using this technique as the success depends on how the Google has classified the neighborhood boundaries.
4. Personalize your social engagement
Besides local search optimization, another method of overcoming the competition is by getting into the personal factor in the brand strategy. Large business upon reaching a certain point in their growth loses their personalities, but small enterprises are advantageous as they give personal and humanized experience to their followers.
Always make sure to encourage your social media followers as this can lead to more posts and followers. The more active you are on social media the higher is the chance of getting top ranks in Google search.
5. Become a recognized, authoritative content publisher
To build brand awareness, devotion, faith and integrity, good quality content publication is required. Most of the companies make use of blogs to publish contents, some distribute e-books, webinars, videos etc. through various medias.
To build your brand through a content strategy, quality and consistency is to be maintained. Make sure to maximize the reach for every content you publish thereby increasing the returns on investments.
In total, there are no easy and shortcut methods to reach the top of the Google search results especially when there is tough competition among the companies. But using and adopting good strategies you can overcome your competitors effectively.