Small business pages need to index for local search results and relevancy. Usually, a search engine user will look for a specific type of business and location, like “auto mechanic in Brooklyn.”
However, users also search for answers to their problems while they have location search turned on. Imagine a user searching for “how do I fix a flat tire?” and getting a local search result for an auto mechanic offering towing services.
This can happen for small businesses on a local level. To take advantage of it, you must have the right information available on your small business website – and it should be relevant information, not just a string of keywords and locations.
Should You Have a Blog?
If you’re a small business owner (or managing the online reputation and visibility of a small business and its brand), it might seem natural to include a blog on the website. However, think about how you’ll use the blog and what it will say.
- Will you update the blog frequently (once per week or more)?
- Are you an industry expert or looking to become recognized as one?
- Do you have the time to regularly maintain a blog?
If the answer to these questions is yes, then implementing a blog on a small website makes sense. If not, there’s a workaround to help you achieve keyword and key phrase searchability.
Answer Common Questions Simply
Let’s say we’re helping a local plumber manage his brand. He’s not really interested in blogging and social networking, and he’s a bit frugal; he’s not into hiring you or another blogger to keep an updated blog.
Since there isn’t time or money for a blog, you could instead include an FAQ page on the website, answering common questions like:
- How do I unclog a sink?
- Why does my toilet run?
- How do I fix a leaky faucet?
- How do I reduce my water bill?
The answers to these questions are short – and if the person answering the question can’t figure it out or runs into trouble down the road, it could result in a service request for the plumber and his helpful website.
This will also help if a search engine user looks up “fix leaky faucet Philadelphia PA” or any other search identifying the problem and the location (versus “find a plumber Philadelphia PA,” which is also relevant).
Update Content Frequently
If you aren’t blogging regularly on a small business website, it’s important to still include updates from time to time to maintain relevancy on Google. Google likes fresh and updated information, so consider including holiday greetings from the business owners, quick tips with the change of seasons, and more.
Google may reward you for this effort, especially if your small local competitor has a website that is largely ignored by its management team.
To learn more about how prospective customers use Google, check out Jeremy Miller’s SEMrush post about making your brand Googleable.
Do you have a success story about a small business website and SEO? Tell us about it in the comments.
Tara M. Clapper is a technical editor for SEMrush and senior editor at The Geek Initiative, a website celebrating women in geek culture. She has written effective web copy for more than 300 small business websites.