Understand search trends and market interest
Understanding search trends and interest is a powerful method of structuring both your marketing efforts and brand offering. A key SEO deliverable is keyword research which leads into your overall website optimisation strategy. Keyword research will help you ascertain what people are actually searching for in relation to your brand, products and services.
By having this data, you will be able to predict consumer behaviour and market your business in the most efficient and effective manner.
Let’s work with an example scenario
You run a bakery that produces a range of products and from your sales data you know that the customers who come into your store love buying certain products during specific times in the year. That’s one data source – an internal one.
Keyword research is an external data source that will help you understand if there are more searches for bagels compared to doughnuts or whether people are searching for a specific type of bagel. It will also show you whether people are searching for products and services that you may not currently offer, for example ‘baking classes’. Being a small business, agile adaptation is a high possibility – giving you the opportunity to create new or promotional products and services based on search interest.
Using this data, not only can you optimise your website for the right keywords but you can also optimise marketing efforts on other channels. This will help you invest your money in marketing efforts when and where it will have a significant impact.
Keyword Difficulty %
bakery near me
cake bakery near me
bagels cape town
how to make bagels
Recognise your competition
Remember that competition in the online world works a little differently to, for example, shoe stores located next to each other in a mall.
First, how do you find your online competition?
During the SEO research phase, your priority keywords are analysed through software that tells us where you rank for those keywords on search engines and who is competing with you for those keywords.
An SEO landscape audit will give you the following information:
- A list of domains and businesses you are competing with for visibility
- Your visibility performance on mobile and desktop
- Solutions you can implement instantly to improve your visibility
- Solutions you can implement over time
Increase brand awareness
For small businesses, building brand awareness is essential to leading people down your purchase funnel.
Different people are at different stages of the marketing funnel when they conduct an online search. Some people already know what they want to buy and where they want to buy it from, whilst others might not even know they want to buy something – they could simply be researching, “Images of the most beautiful places in South Africa”.
We call the second group of people, informational searchers. Creating SEO content is one of the most effective ways of reaching these searchers and improving your brand awareness. Quality-crafted content can leave a lasting positive impression that has the potential to bring those people back to your website and may even convert them into a customer in the future.
Long term affordability
SEO is a marketing tactic that has the potential to grow your small business in a steady and positive manner.
It’s important for you as a business owner to understand what SEO is and what it is not.
It is an affordable, long term marketing strategy as once you have the technical foundations set in place, there is a possibility to continue at a lower budget by focusing on content and basic maintenance.
It is not a once-off implementation – especially if you want to see continued growth. If you are tempted to take this route due to budget restrictions, be sure to ask your SEO provider for training on how to measure performance and for a clear roadmap that will help you continue basic SEO implementations on a regular basis.
We are often questioned as to when results will start showing. Unlike paid search or paid social media, organic marketing takes time to adjust and you can expect performance fluctuations as search engines attempt to understand your website and where it should be ranked.
We recommend that you plan for (at least) a six to eight month initial commitment to SEO. Your SEO provider should advise you on the current organic search landscape for your business and explain any difficulties that you may experience in terms of competition or other factors that may impact your performance.
In the long term, SEO is an affordable marketing tactic and doesn’t immediately stop working if you decide to pause it for a month or two.
How does our SEO pricing work?
We have worked with a range of business types and sizes and understand the budget restrictions that you as a small business owner may have.
This is why we price for a recommended SEO strategy and rollout which can be manipulated according to your budget. Simply, this means that we will provide you with the same, high-quality services but at a longer rollout period. Our team will explain the difference in effectiveness of each pricing option and adjust our strategy accordingly when we become aware of tactics that will serve as a quick organic win to your business.
Free SEO consultation for small business owners
A great part of our business has been connecting with small business owners across South Africa, specifically those that have been negatively impacted by COVID-19 to provide advice on their marketing efforts.
The goal of our SEO consultation is to show you areas of your online presence that can benefit from SEO and also provide you with recommendations on how to do so.
If you would like to connect with us and learn more about the free consultation, get in touch with our team.