Search Engine Optimization for Small Businesses

As a small business owner, you need your website to rank higher on search engine result pages (SERPs). But with so much competition, it can be challenging to get noticed. That’s where search engine optimization (SEO) comes in. SEO is the process of optimizing your website to rank higher on SERPs. In this article, we will discuss SEO tips that any small business should implement right now.

What is SEO?

SEO is a marketing strategy that focuses on increasing the quality and quantity of website traffic by optimizing your website for search engines. SEO is not a one-time process; it is a continuous effort to improve your website’s ranking on SERPs.

Select The Right Keywords

Keywords are the foundation of any SEO strategy.

A keyword is a phrase or word that users enter into a search engine to find information.

The first step in SEO is to identify the keywords relevant to your business.

For example, if you are a bakery, your keywords could be “freshly baked goods,” “artisanal bread,” or “custom cupcakes.” Once you have identified your keywords, you can optimize your website for them.

Pro tip: You can use the following tools to identify what keywords you should be targeting, Uber Suggest & Google Keyword Planner Tool. Remember to keep an eye on the competition level and the search volumes. You want to target keywords that are not too competitive but that still have enough monthly search volume to drive traffic.

Title Tags and Meta Descriptions

Title tags and meta descriptions are HTML elements that provide information about your webpage to search engines. The title tag is the title of your webpage that appears on SERPs, and the meta description is a brief description of your webpage. Both title tags and meta descriptions should include your targeted keywords to help search engines understand the content of your webpage.

Pro tip: Ensure your keyword is in the title as well as in the description. Ensure your title is no longer than 70 characters, and your meta description is no longer than 160 characters. Only use your keyword once in each instance, don’t stuff keywords into the titles and descriptions. Also, ensure you make use of power words to drive more interest in the SERPS.

Content Optimization

Your website’s content should be relevant, informative, and engaging. Content optimization involves optimizing your website’s content for your targeted keywords. You should include your targeted keywords in your content but avoid keyword stuffing. Keyword stuffing is the practice of overusing keywords in your content, which can hurt your website’s ranking.

Pro tip: Use no more than 4 instances of your keyword in a blog or page that has 1000 words or less. If you have a WordPress website you can make use of YOAST SEO to get tips on what best practices your should be following.


Backlinks are links from other websites to your website. Backlinks are essential for SEO because they signal to search engines that your website is a trusted source of information. The quality of backlinks is more important than the quantity of backlinks.

Pro tip: Don’t buy backlinks, they will hurt your SEO efforts in the long run. An easy way to obtain backlinks is from quality business directories, Quora and by manually reaching out to website owners to be featured on their blogs.

Here is a list of some business directories you can get links from.

Local SEO

Local SEO is a subset of SEO that optimises your website for local searches. Local SEO is essential for small businesses that want to attract local customers. To optimize your website for local SEO, you should include your business name, address, and phone number (NAP) on your website. You should also claim your Google My Business listing, which will help your business appear in local search results.

Pro tip: When optimising for local traffic you will want to ensure you include area-specific keywords when you are researching your keywords. Keywords like “bakery in Durbanville” or “custom cupcakes Paarl” will help attract people to your website that are most likely in your area. You can also read more on optimising your Google My Business page.

Mobile Optimization

Mobile optimization is the process of optimizing your website for mobile devices. More than 80% of internet traffic comes from mobile devices, so it is essential to optimize your website for mobile devices. Mobile optimization involves using a responsive design, optimizing images for mobile devices, and reducing page load times.

Pro tip: Ensure that your website designer has optimised your website for mobile devices, simply test your website on mobile and see where visitors to your website may find difficulty, and get your designer to resolve these issues.

Social Media

Social media can help you improve your website’s ranking on SERPs. Social media signals, such as likes, shares, and followers, can indicate to search engines that your website is popular and relevant. You should include social sharing buttons on your website, which will encourage users to share your content on social media.


SEO can be daunting for small business owners, but it is essential for attracting more customers to your website. By following the tips in this article, you can improve your website’s ranking on SERPs and attract more customers. Remember that SEO is a continuous process, and it takes time to see results. But with patience and perseverance, you can achieve success in SEO.

If you don’t have the time to master the ongoing SEO efforts on your website, then get a professional SEO company to help you out.