Search engine optimisation (SEO) has become absolutely crucial for small businesses to carve out a niche for themselves in the digital marketing landscape. With big corporate competitors devouring the biggest and most general search terms, you might be wondering how SEO could help a small business.

Despite the dominance of big businesses on the digital landscape, it’s important to remember that these market leaders will always have more mindshare than you by default. Small businesses who use SEO should not be attempting to compete directly with these big players but instead capture a specific potion of the market that suits their niche, whether it is their location or some other factor.

Let’s take a look at why SEO is still so important for small businesses.

Targeting local search trends

The biggest way in which SEO helps small business is in the way that it can help a website rank for keywords tailored to their specific geographic area. This is incredibly powerful in industries like hospitality where someone might search “restaurants near me”.

Using that geographic prompt, Google then uses the GPS location of the searcher to find businesses within a variable radius. This means that users are looking for a local restaurant, not necessarily the best restaurant in the world, so a small business can only needs to be the most authoritative choice in that geographic area.

This is not to say that a small business shouldn’t aspire to greater SEO outcomes, but realistic practitioners will always start with a focus on local SEO and build up a campaign from there.

Creating an optimal user experience

A big part of SEO is the task of optimising a businesses’ web presence so that it is user friendly, engaging and authoritative. This includes optimisation of social media channels and developing a content strategy for those platforms.

An optimal user experience is created by serving quality content in a readable format on a technically proficient web page. This means the page needs to be interesting, easy to read and must load quickly for users.

While there are plenty of other small factors at play here, the main objective is to keep users on the page and engaging with the businesses’ content. Whether it’s a FAQ page or an online shopping cart, the user experience needs to be as good as possible.

Another big part of user experience is having a mobile friendly website. This means that your website displays optimally on smartphones and tablets as well as for desktop users.