5 Things Every Business Owner Needs to Know About SEO in 2013

Showing up at the top of search results can make all the difference for your business. If you want to get more leads and more customers in 2013, you’ve got to follow the numbers.

Over the years, my research has shown that there are some reliable ways to get predictable results when it comes to SEO. Here are five key actions you can take to ensure you’re getting the most out of your web presence in 2013.

1. Take baseline measurements and write SMART goals. Educate yourself on your current numbers via Google Analytics. Then take Darren Hardy’s advice from his book, “Living Your Best Year Ever,” and set SMART goals. These are goals that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-sensitive.

2. Create high-quality content for each page. The biggest SEO challenge facing business owners is the lack of high-quality content. Everyone involved in a website project gets excited when they see the design for the new homepage, but when it comes time to write the actual content, the project can come to a screeching halt. In my training sessions and university classes, I often suggest that business owners find help on Elance.com, or hire a local freelancer, as an alternative to writing the content themselves.

3. Select keywords that are proven performers for delivering traffic. We call these “predictive keywords” because they relate to themes on your website and have proven performance on Google and other search engines through daily use. I suggest you create a free account on SEOBook.com and use their Keyword Selector Tool for keyword guidance.

4. Focus on location, location, location. Take advantage of the three most important pieces of real estate on any content page: the page title, meta keywords, and meta description. Google uses your page title as the link to your site in its search results, so give each page a unique title and include keywords. Use the same phrasing from your page titles for your meta keywords, and keep your meta description (that sentence or two that runs under your page title on a Google search results list) to no more than 23 words.

5. Give visitors something to read. Limit the content on each page to a single topic running between 500 and 1,000 words each. Fewer than 500 words will prevent you from using enough keyword mentions, and more than 1,000 will lose the attention of your visitor.

If you’re looking for more expertise or need additional help, seek out an SEO professional who can give you the following three things:

  • A predictable increase in targeted site traffic,
  • A predictable increase in leads, and
  • A predictable increase in sales.

These predictions are, in fact, possible — and they’ll bring you far more customers this year. So don’t take “no” for an answer. It may make all the difference for your bottom line.

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