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Must-Know Web Marketing Tips for Small Business Owners

August 30, 2010  
Filed under The Workplace

How to grow your business using search marketing techniques.

marketing tips for small business ownersSo you just started your own business or worked your way into self-employment and now you’re on the hunt for new customers and clients. Wouldn’t it be nice if they just found you naturally on the first page of the Google search engine by typing in a general key term that described your service?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is no longer a recent phenomenon that only a few know about. It has taken web marketing to a whole new level in the past few years. If you’re self employed or a small business owner with a website and have never heard of the concept, you’re missing out on a powerful marketing tool, and the best part is that it’s free.

Search Engine Optimization is basically a marketing strategy that aims to rank your website high on the search engines. Google, Yahoo and Bing all use a different set of criteria to rank a page, but Google is the most used and offers the most tools. They use more than 200 factors in determining whether your website should be first or last when someone searches a key phrase in the search engine, such as, “wardrobe stylist in LA.” Some of those factors include the title of the page, who links to your site and which directories you’re listed in. (See Google Webmaster Central for more resources and info.)

If you’re not web savvy, it’s worth it to higher someone who is skilled in this area since it is a good long-term investment. In the meantime, here are five marketing tips that any small business owner with a website can quickly implement to help increase search engine rankings.

  1. Make the most of free online resources. Google offers many tools for website owners to increase traffic on their page. The keyword tool is helpful in determining how many people search for a specific key phrase. For instance, type in “young professionals in los angeles” and the tool will tell you how many people are searching for that phrase and the trend. Find a phrase that is popular and best describes your site. Then use that as the title tag. (This needs to be changed on the back-end of the site.) 
  2. Get listed in major directories like and Yahoo. Don’t try to get listed in as many directories as possible. Quality is always better than quantity.
  3. Build relationships with high traffic sites that are relevant to your content so they can link to your site. Domains that end with .edu and .gov have more value.
  4. Start a company blog about your expertise and post consistently even if it means one photo a day with a short commentary. WordPress, Tumblr, or Blogger are good options to consider.
  5. If you haven’t already, engage in social media even if you don’t want to. Hire talented underlings if you have to, but do it and be consistent. The goal is to build community and strong followers. (Facebook, Twitter, Delicious, Digg, StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, Google Buzz, etc.)

While relying on traditional media may be important to grow brand image and brand recognition, the best way to market your company with no budget and for long-term growth is through search marketing. So begin a web marketing campaign, be proactive and get crackin’. People are waiting to find you.


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