SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, might seem like an impossible-to-crack code. Yet SEO is incredibly important if you want your business to be found online. If your website is optimized for search engines, Google, Yahoo, and Bing will view it as a good source and offer it up to users who are searching for your products or services. If your website isn’t optimized, then it might as well be invisible.
For many people, SEO is a full time job. You may think that due to your full-time job as a board retailer, you don’t have time to add SEO to your plate. This is where you’re wrong. Sure, you won’t be able to do all the things a digital marketing professional can accomplish, but everyone has time to make a few small tweaks to their website that will yield big results.
Below are five things you can do this week to improve your SEO and make your website rise in the rankings. Try them out and see what a difference they make.
1. Create unique content that people want to read and share.
While filling your website with rich content isn’t exactly something you can do overnight, it is something you can start today. If you don’t have a company or business blog, it’s time to launch one! You can write “how to” posts, new product launches, behind-the-scenes information, or gift guides for various holidays. Use specific keywords in the title and first paragraph of your post so readers (and search engines!) immediately know what the post is about.
2. Create internal links within your website.
Internal linking helps SEO in a number of ways. It helps search engines crawl your pages more effectively, it keeps users on your site by encouraging them to click around, and it increases your page views. The more time users spend on your site, the more valuable it will seem to search engines. But don’t go overboard! Make sure you only link relevant things that make sense, otherwise you’ll frustrate users and search engines alike.
3. Don’t forget about external links!
External links are exactly what they sound like—links from your website to other sites. While this might seem counterintuitive—why would you want to lead users away from your website? —it’s actually great for SEO. Remember when your mother used to say “you’re only as good as the company you keep?” This advice is still true—at least when it comes to websites. If you link to established, informative websites that are seen as experts in your field, it will reflect well on your site. Plus, it’s a great way to network with colleagues and support others in your industry.
4. Get on social media and engage.
SEO is based on keywords, codes, and algorithms, but part of it is also a popularity contest. This means search engines take your social media platforms into account when ranking your site. The more active you are on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, the more valuable your website will become. If you aren’t on social media, or have a profile you don’t maintain, make an effort to be more active and engage your friends and fans. Create a content calendar and post regularly, sharing industry news, special sales and events, and links to new products in your shop or store.
5. Read your URLs and edit as needed.
Search engines aren’t deep thinkers. They’re basically robots, so it’s important to make things easy for them. Keeping your URLs search engine friendly is one way to do just that. Make sure your URLs aren’t an incoherent string of numbers and letters, and instead contain keywords that show exactly what the page or post is about. This is easy to do when you’re building brand new pages or writing blog posts, but harder to do retroactively, especially if you’ve linked to pages in the past. At the very least, make this a good habit moving forward and your website will thank you.