Small businesses can benefit greatly from search engines such as Google and Bing, driving in thousands of organic visitors which can be converted into customers. But if your website is not ranking, you won’t be able to grow and enjoy the same benefits as your competitors – and that could cost you thousands of pounds in lost revenue. To give you a helping hand, we’ve rounded up five reasons why your website isn’t ranking as well as it could be. Check them out and put it into action.
- You haven’t submitted your site to Google
Search engines like Google crawl websites on a regular basis without any user interaction, but you can speed up the crawling process by submitting your website directly. Tools such as Google Search Console can be used to upload sitemaps, which give Google direct access to the structure of your website, making it more likely to index and rank your pages. You could also add a link to your sitemap in the bottom of your website, like in your footer, to make it easier for search engines to find your sitemaps. Oh, and be sure that your sitemaps are uploaded in your root directory as /sitemap.xml or similar, and reference this in your header.
- Your content is poor
When it comes to promoting your small business online, content marketing is one of the best ways to go. If your content is short, low-quality or even non-existent, Google won’t want to rank your content. Make sure you take your time when writing content – that means well-researched, in-depth content that answers questions, helps your users and improves their online experience. If you’re not feeling confident or don’t know how to write, then you should consider hiring a copywriter or marketing specialist to help create the best content for your site.
- You haven’t optimized your keywords
When you start your SEO strategy, you should take the time to select the right keywords. It’s easy to do this by spying on your competitors’ keywords or using a tool like SEMRush or Ahrefs to see which keywords have the best chances of success. Again, you should enlist the help of a marketing or SEO specialist if you don’t know how to find the most appropriate keywords – or you could check out a marketing blog and learn how to find them yourself. Make sure you incorporate your keywords into all of your relevant pages – in your headers, Meta descriptions, page titles and general content. Oh, and try not to keyword stuff – doing so can cause you to be penalised and will make you appear spammy and unprofessional.
- You’re not linking internally
Internal linking is one of the best ways to boost your website’s SEO – and it doesn’t take long to do so. As well as having an easy-to-use navigation system and a sitemap, you should link between pages on your website when appropriate. If you run an eCommerce website, for example, you should write high-quality content and link back to product pages. You should also aim to write at least 250-500 words at the bottom of every page of your product categories – that way, you’ll be able to rank higher for your product categories, and have an opportunity to add in links.
- You don’t have any backlinks
When it comes to SEO, write high-quality content. The more high-quality websites that link back to yours, the better, so you should do everything you can to earn them. You can build links by signing up to business directories, partaking in email outreach when you launch new content, commenting on other people’s blogs and guest blogging. The best way to build links is to mix up your strategy – you don’t want to only gain links from directories or only from guest blogging, as Google will see this as unnatural and may penalize your content. Make sure you build links on a regular basis – the more you have, and more relevant they are, the better you’ll rank.
There you have it – just five ways that you can boost your chances of success when it comes to ranking on Google. Of course, there’s more to SEO than the points we’ve raised, but they’ll no doubt but you on the road to success. Be sure to take our advice on board and see how it works for your business – the chances are, you’ll soon see results and will be one step ahead in your SEO strategy. Good luck.
This article has been written by Max Greene. Check out his bio below:
About the Author
Max Greene is the Managing Director of Muffin Marketing, a marketing agency specializing in content marketing, social media marketing, and search engine optimization.