An Important Question From A Small Business Owner In Regards To Hiring An SEO Expert
🚩 We had an important question from a small business owner in regards to hiring an SEO expert at the office today.
(Copy has been altered to remove identifying info for privacy)
Why Are some websites so popular?
In short: It's complicated. Some ‘SEO experts' may offer a quick fix that could be quite costly financially or by negatively affecting your search ranking, while others are committed to responsible practices. Our advice – do your research so that you can make a confident and informed decision based on your needs and business goals.
You don't need to understand every technical aspect of SEO, but a quick overview of the basics can help you to discern a valuable offer vs a sales pitch you may want to walk away from.
SEO is at play… But you need to understand how organic SEO works, as a part of a larger digital strategy plan, in order to see the most benefits for your small business.
Where Should I Start?
Why not get your overview straight from the source: Google! This ‘Starter Guide‘ takes into account all levels of familiarity from SEO experts to those looking to hire someone else to take it on.
Some Key Takeaways:
- A new website will always take time to “be discovered” as ‘google crawlers’ make their way through – This could take one month or could take longer.
- Hiring an SEO specialist can be beneficial, but also can do damage if they use irresponsible practices.
- The best SEO experts include SEO as part of the original website design or redesign process.
- Dedicate time and effort into writing meta tags that inform and generate interest.
- Most experts echo that good practice is to spend time planning and creating content that informs and generates interest – This could be included within a blog section.
- Know what your readers want and give it to them.
- Write easy to read text.
- Organize topics clearly.
- Provide an appropriate amount of content.
- Use links wisely.
- Make your website mobile-friendly.
- Consider using a social media strategy to grow your audience and drive revenant traffic to your site.
- Consider learning more about google analytics so that you can better understand your audience, their demographics and behaviours and formulate your ‘next steps’ based on insight you gather there. (There are many online tutorials for this as well as in-person workshops)
- Try also checking out articles you may find by searching “Organic SEO” on google to gain some more insight and inspiration.
Basic Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Website As You Get Started.
- Do I serve high-quality content to users?
- Is my local business showing up on Google?
- Is my content fast and easy to access on all devices?
- Is my website secure?
- Have I included a call to action?
- Have I given some thought to strengthening my brand as well as User experience on my website?
- Have I asked for feedback from customers or clients? (design, messaging, functionality, etc)
- How much of my monthly budget have I allocated towards marketing and how can I spend this most efficiently?
- How can I track metrics, and when will I revisit my digital strategy to assess if adjustments should be made?
- Am I working with service providers who are informative, helpful and transparent?
- How could I better connect with and learn from other business owners facing similar challenges to myself?
- How can I utilize social media platforms to grow my audience and drive traffic to my website?
- How can I identify my main competitors, learn from them, and remain competitive?
- Will you implement a sales funnel? What style? (Here are 22)
Hire an Expert or DIY – Some Things to Consider
- Time investment vs spend?
- Where will you find a reputable expert?
- What is your primary motive for driving more traffic to your website?
- If you want to hire someone, are they upfront and knowledgable about your ROI + KPIs, (Return on Investment and Key Performance Indicators) and do they communicate in a way that makes it easy to understand their role?
- Do they seem concerned with responsible practices that are complementary to your overall digital strategy?
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Written by: Anna Zissou
Coordinator – Marketing + Events at Digital Main Street
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Digital Main Street is helping to create connected cities, maintain vibrant neighbourhoods, and empower main streets – providing business owners with the support and guidance they need during their digital transformation journey.
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The many small businesses that line global main streets have always been a defining quality of vibrant downtowns and communities. Small business is the economic engine of any country. Main street small businesses are major contributors to any regional economic power through employment, taxes and exporting.
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