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All small businesses should have a good website. Having a website alone is not enough. The website should be ranked at least in the first 20 search results. As a small business owner, if you want to attract traffic to your website, you must improve the search engine optimization (SEO). That means, making your website more visible to Internet users when they search for products/services similar to the ones you sell. One of the key factors that can improve your SEO is the use of specific keywords. The content of your website should use relevant keywords, i.e. the keywords that are widely used in searching for topics pertaining to your industry.

5 Traditional Channels of SEO a Small Business Owner Must Know

  • 1. Join relevant forums and groups – If you search the Internet, you will come across forums and discussion boards based on your area of expertise. Join them. This will be a chance for you to share your expertise and give any suggestions you may have. Use this outlet as a place to gain knowledge about your specific industry.
  • 2. Submit the URL of your blogs and websites – There are free link directories such as Google, Dmoz, Alltop and so on that allow you to submit the links for quick caching and also, for gaining relevant back links.
  • 3. Bookmark the sites you visit frequently- There are sites which contain valuable information that you may need and these sites could be bookmarked for future use. Currently, many people are using social bookmarking sites such as Digg, Delicious, Reddit and many more to share similar interests. If someone has bookmarked your website, ensure that you have quality content and updated information on it.
  • 4. Write Blogs- This is considered to be the king of all SEO techniques. Search engines love blogs which have fresh, unique and frequently updated content. Small business owners should maintain a blog and also update it frequently. There are many blogging sites where you can post your blogs. This will create awareness of your product; hence make a wonderful marketing tool.
  • 5. Blog commenting- You should comment on other people’s blogs. This is an important networking tool where you can share your opinions and suggestions. Similarly, you should invite other bloggers to leave comments on your blog posts.

5 SEO Terms a Small Business Owner Must Know

There are a few SEO terms that you need to be familiar with. This will give you a better understanding of what SEO is. We have put together 5 common SEO terms you must know.

  • 1. Google Bomb – This refers to the practice of webmasters, where they create a large number of links and also change the meaning of the keyword phrases that will help the web page rank higher in search results. When this is done, Google’s search-rank algorithm ranks pages higher for a certain search phrase if there are enough other pages linked to it, using similar anchor text.
  • 2. Keyword cannibalization – This is the term which is used when the pages of your website competes with each other for certain keyword phrase. It means a few of the pages are eating the popularity of other pages. There are times when keyword cannibalization is unavoidable.
  • 3. Cloaking – This is a SEO technique, where the content presented to the search engine differs from that of the browser. It is practiced to deceive the search engines and is known as the black hat technique. By doing so, it will display the webpage that would not otherwise be displayed. You should avoid using this because it can cause the ranking to fall.
  • 4. Back links – It is the process of one website linking to another. Search engine rankings will be higher if there are many websites that have back links to your website.
  • 5. Google Dance – Website owners should have to regularly update the web content if they want to rank in Google. When Google changes its algorithm, it will reflect in the ranking of the search engine result pages (SERP). Sometimes your site will be ranked on the first page, later on the second page and sometimes on the 10th page. This occurs when you are building your website and adding contents and back links and have yet to earn the trust of Google.

5 Free SEO Tools You Can Use

  • 1. SEO-Quakethis tool will work only with Firefox.
  • 2. Free Google Keyword ToolYou can search for keyword phrases. You can enter any website URL into the tool and Google will return the keywords.
  • 3. Market SamuraiPaid version is also available. If you want only the keywords, free version is more than enough.
  • 4. WordPress.orgWordPress is free to use and here you can set up as many self hosted websites as you want. It also allows you to update your content and this is something search engines love.
  • 5. WebsiteGrader.comThis SEO tool is used for SEO analysis of your website. A paid version of this SEO tool is also available. However, if you are analyzing only one website at a time.

Harness the power of SEO and attract business to your website, thus producing tangible revenue.

Flickr image by toprankonlinemarketing

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