It’s important to have my hand on the pulse of the digital marketing community, as an expert in the field. Change happens around here in the blink of an eye, which can impact each of us greatly, from B2B and B2C business owners, as well as social influencers and freelance creatives. We rely on the internet for ALL of our STUFF, don’t we? As we know, this reliance is a beautiful and complicated relationship, which for better or worse, introduces more competition than we’ve ever witnessed before. It takes a lot to get noticed. The bottom line? Search Engine Optimization is an absolute must. Here’s a few cutting edge SEO tips that could really help boost your visibility by elevating your website and giving you more authority with Google in 2019.
1. The game is not necessarily about getting MORE eyes on your product as it is about THE RIGHT eyes.
In the past, it was possible to plug in a bunch of keywords all over your site to boost your site’s views. But as search engines get smarter, we must also. Ask yourself the right questions: Who is my ideal audience member? How do I clearly and concisely convey my brand message? Are my descriptions compatible with voice search? — something that will only continue to grow in popularity as we welcome more virtual assistant software into our homes. These questions will help you narrow the focus and optimize the category of user intent.
2. Labels and tags.
Labels and tags placed intentionally and thoroughly around your site will fare well for you in search ranking, as your consumer will find these more appealing. In the world of the millisecond catch and hook search, your concise and thoughtful wording can attract more clicks, and more importantly the RIGHT clicks, like I mentioned in the previous section. This process is referred to as micro formatting, or schema — which can get really technical in the coding world — but we don’t need to go there. You get the point. Ultimately, we want to communicate more honestly and more efficiently with search engines using these pockets of information.
3. In your personal time, how often do you search from your phone?
…..Go ahead and think about it…… Well, if your answer was the majority of the time, your answer reflects the same in your market. Do everything in your power to make your site mobile-friendly. Period. Seriously. It’s one of those investments that will keep you on par with, and hopefully ahead of, your competitors.
4. Hello Siri, Bixby, Alexa, and Google Home!
As briefly mentioned in the first section, voice search is increasing in popularity and use as these devices continue to sell. This merge in technology has blended the Bluetooth music speaker, virtual assistant voice search, and streamlined communication & shopping apps all into one small device slightly larger than your phone (yet thankfully more difficult to misplace.) To elaborate on earlier notes about voice search — it is important to pay mind to how we phrase descriptions to be compatible with these devices. Consider utilizing phrases that answer the who, what, when, where, and why questions. I recommend playing around with your own Siri to discover the responsive nature of these AI bots.
5. The best customer is also a neighbor or nearby visitor.
THINK LOCAL! Google prefers to play area-specific matchmaker. The closer, the better. For those in the city, don’t be afraid to focus on just your part of town. As a brick and mortar storefront, make yourself known at an exact location. “Near Me” searches increased 130% from 2014 to 2015 and will only continue to do so. You can also begin to target hyper-specific areas in paid ads. If a potential customer feels confident in your business by their first impression online, why would they feel the need to drive across town? Anyone would opt to save time, gas, and find a great business close to home, work, or wherever they may currently be visiting.
6. Fresh content is still a necessary component.
But algorithms will now be identifying a deeper level of content QUALITY, rather than just accounting for QUANTITY. With billions of words, replicas, and mindless copies, it’s hard to introduce new ideas — but the human touch can always put a valuable and unique spin on material if they are truly in touch with their audience. Maintaining an authentic connection between your people and your industry is priceless, and search analysis will recognize it. Everything will pay off as your site is rewarded in visibility ranking for all the extra TLC.
7. You’ve gotta bring your A-game if you want to win eyes in this competition.
As a brand, your “whole package” has got to include a comprehensive and cohesive strategy. Unfortunately, DIY will only take you to a certain level. Without an expert on your side, your chances of success decrease. Thankfully, these experts are more accessible and affordable than ever before. There are good guys out there who want to help your small business win the fight against the big greedy corporations. It is essential to build a supportive marketing team around you and your business.
Let’s face it, 2019 will be full of numerous challenges and countless rewards. In order to stay focused on what matters most, we’ve gotta stay in touch with the fast-moving tech world and all the lovely people utilizing these advancements. Take time to know your product, know your people, narrow your focus, and do what you do well. And when it becomes too much, don’t be afraid to reach out for help or at least explore the possibilities. Do what you do and do it well! Cheers to a new year!
Co-founder of Humble Fox Media, Thrive Global Contributor & Small Business Marketing Expert. I have helped many local businesses with their digital marketing needs for more than 4 years. In my off time, you can find me tasting some local beers around Gig Harbor, WA. Searching for music from the 90’s at a vinyl record shop near you and playing guitar with my band Pastel Dream.