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Search Engine Optimization is the official term for the process of getting a website higher on search engine results pages- and it really is a process. SEO requires a lot of research beforehand on the business’s market, local area and competitors, and a lot of work optimizing and maintaining the site so that it ranks well and adapts to future changes in technology.
Most SEO work happens on the back end of a website, and on things that as users, we can’t really see. This is the kind of thing that’s best left to the experts.
Your website scores big points when Google finds it to be relevant, so here’s how you can help:
As business owner, don’t just set and forget your website. You need to check in regularly to make sure the content is correct, and still relevant.
One of the most important things to check is your contact information- your shop’s phone number, physical address and hours of operation. You need to make sure that each of these are accurate and consistent across your web presence. Your shop’s website (including all of the pages) and social media pages should reflect the same information. Inconsistencies are a signal to Google that the information needs to be updated, so your site could get put on the back burner until the necessary updates are made, causing your search rankings to suffer.
Keep your services information current as well- if you change any of your services, add new ones or stop performing old ones, be sure to update your list of service offerings on the website. This will help your chances of getting found for the right kind of services, and avoid potential customers calling in about services you no longer provide.
If your shop has a Facebook or Google+ page, make regular updates and posts- no more than once a day, and no less than once a week. And don’t leave your followers hanging if they ask questions or leave a comment! Believe it or not, an active social presence goes a long way to boosting your rankings and increasing the relevancy of your content and web presence.
Visual content, like photos are another simple update that can have a big impact. People love looking at photos of others, so photos of you and your staff, and interactions with customers at the shop are sure to grab their attention and increase the time users spend in your website. Regularly updating your photos sends a message to Google as well, that you’re paying attention to your content and making sure it continues to stay relevant.
Adding promotions to your website is another great way to engage your users and encourage them to spend more time on your site. People love shopping around for a deal, and including recurring promotions will prompt them to check back in to your site regularly to see if you have any new specials and coupons they can take advantage of.
So to recap:
– Up to date and accurate information is your most important contribution to solid SEO for your shop’s website. Make sure your website and social pages display consistently display the right contact information.
– Use social media to your advantage: post regular updates and stay on top of communication.
– Update information about your shop’s services and any other developments whenever you can.
– Add photos of your staff to your website, especially on the homepage to get the biggest impact.
– Add a promotional section to your website and keep it up to date too!
– And lastly, don’t forget to blog!
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