I was asked recently ‘What’s the most important marketing strategy for small businesses?’

While I specialise in law firm marketing, I’m often get asked for advice from other businesses. There are many marketing strategies that work great for small businesses. If I had to pick one, I’d suggest SEO.

Why does SEO work great for small businesses?

Google is just so important for matching clients with businesses. More people are flocking to Google to find products and services. It’s also the first place most people go to find answers. Importantly, Google is getting better at matching people with useful information.

That’s why I think it’s so crucial to be visible on Google. The best way to do this is with SEO and Google Ads.

While I recommend both, if I had to choose one, I’d prioritise SEO. Why? Cost.

Google Ads can become expensive. Whereas SEO helps you get organic (i.e. free) clicks. And SEO takes time. So it’s best to start now. Think of it as an investment.

How can small businesses execute SEO effectively? Are there are any tools or steps they should take?

There are many ways to do SEO. There are many ranking factors. A few important ones include high-quality content, great user experience and getting links. 

A few quick words of advice for small businesses:

  • First, have a great website.
  • Use a basic keyword research tool. There are many great options (e.g. Keywords Everywhere, Keysearch, SEMrush, etc.)
  • Always research your content before creating it.
  • Write website content based on keyword research (e.g. blogs, legal updates, videos, news articles, etc).
  • Flesh out your services pages. Ensure you answer common questions.
  • Ensure you have a primary keyword in the meta title for each relevant page.
  • Optimise each website page for SEO with an SEO tool (e.g. Rank Math SEO for WordPress users).
  • Create a website with useful information. 
  • Get high-quality (and relevant) backlinks.
  • Ensure your website loads fast.
  • Mobile-friendly layout.
  • Write a compelling meta title, meta description and URL. This can improve your click-through rate in search results. Which can improve your Google ranking.
  • Don’t neglect local SEO (e.g. optimise your Google My Business listing).
  • Pursue media opportunities. This can attract new clients and improve your SEO.
  • Be consistent.