Smart search engine marketing for small business ensures that customers find your website easily when they need your services
Search engine marketing for small business (SEM) is an important segment of your online marketing strategy that focuses on a deliberate, well-crafted approach to bringing customers to your website through search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
For instance, a landscape design firm may have highly trained designers and hundreds of happy customers, but if an online search puts the business on page four, or if search results show a two-star rating based on negative reviews, new homeowners are likely to take their business elsewhere.
Less expensive than offline marketing, SEM protects and expands your digital presence, targeting customers precisely when they are searching for the type of services you provide.
Components of a SEM Strategy
Like any powerful marketing strategy, search engine marketing for small business works best when it takes a multi-faceted approach, including:
- Search engine optimization (SEO) – Search engines prioritize results by giving better placement to pages they consider relevant and authoritative. The more high-quality links to your website, the more authoritative the search engine considers your site.
- Pay Per Click advertising (PPC) – PPC takes search engine marketing for small businesses a step further by allowing you to buy advertisements on the search engine based on carefully chosen keywords (or phrases). The fee you pay is determined by the number of times customers click on your advertisement.
- Local SEO – Bring traffic in through location-based searching (e.g., “landscapers in Hartford”). The majority of customers use search engines to find local businesses. Claim your business on Google My Business and on pertinent online directories.
- Reputation Management – Monitor your social media presence, including online reviews, blog posts, tweets, and other social media mentions. Respond appropriately. Encourage loyal customers to post reviews.
Search Engine Marketing for Small Business: Quality Matters
As search engines have evolved over the years, effective SEM has also evolved. The sheer volume of links to your web site matters less than the quality of the links. In other words, the sites that link to your web site should be relevant to your business and respected in the industry.
For the landscaping business, a link from the website for a popular home and garden show, for instance, carries more weight than a link from a fitness center or from websites with poorly written content.
Increase link quality by:
- Frequently and consistently publishing useful content, such as blog posts or white papers, that demonstrates thought leadership
- Making your content easily shareable
- Placing keywords wisely in your content including long-tail keywords
- Leveraging partnerships with local organizations to gain backlinks from their websites
- Building partnerships with influencers that your target audience already trust (e.g. contribute regularly to their blogs).
- Creating a local resource page that provides information on small businesses or events in your area (other local websites will link to your resource page).
Search Engine Marketing Services from eMazzanti
With the recent acquisition of Liqui-Site, eMazzanti now offers world-class search engine marketing services for small business owners looking to polish their digital presence and ensure a page one position.
Starting with keyword research and competitive analysis, eMazzanti’s experts build a SEM and PPC campaign to match your business and budget. Detailed monthly reports determine your ROI and allow for on-going adjustments to maximize performance.
Search engine marketing enables your business to put your marketing dollars to work in a targeted way to effectively convert web traffic to increased sales.