Let’s face it: as a small business owner, ranking in Google can be a really hard task.
First you need to deal with the fact that because you are a smaller business, you are very likely not getting the influx of attention that larger, more established businesses are getting. Furthermore, you have bigger businesses finally catching on to the SEO potential and having a larger marketing budget behind content creation, social media marketing, and developing SEO strategies in the areas of link building and website authority development.
Fortunately, you can still stand toe to toe with the big boys…and develop a fairly successful search engine presence.
Assuming you have all other aspects of SEO right and you simply need to build your authority in the search engines. As a smaller business owner with a smaller marketing budget, there are a few things you can do in-house or through a specialised internet marketing company which can have a good impact on where your website’s visibility is in the search engine results.
Here are 4 backlink strategies that small businesses can use to thrive in today’s SEO world.
Companies large and small use infographics to build links.
The best part about infographics is that their success relies more on creativity and industry knowledge than pure marketing muscle. So if you know your stuff and can put together something eye-catching, you can get dozens of links from a single infographic campaign. Just be sure to check out Visua.ly’s homepage first to see what’s popular in your industry. For example, if you were in the yoga niche, you’d want to check out their health category to learn the types of topics, color schemes and visualizations do well in your particular niche:
Obviously you don’t want to copy other people’s ideas, but it’s smart to know what’s already out there so you’re not reinventing the wheel with your infographic either.
Local Link Building
Local businesses that tap into their local community often find themselves unlocking a Pandora’s box of link building potential.
Well, without a professional PR firm, that’s less likely to happen. However you could get your link placed in an editorial in your local newspaper. You can try dropping them a line and say that you’re a local business owner that wants to give your opinion on the recent ___ issue that everyone’s talking about. Because you’re offering them free content they’ll typically say yes (and reward you with a link back to your business homepage).
Free Products and Services
This one takes a bit of legwork, but it’s usually worth it. If you can provide customers or potential customers discounts on products or services, they’ll usually be happy to provide support by way of a link.
For example, let’s say that your business sold t-shirts. One cool way to build back links would be to send them out to the people you work with. You don’t have to send them a physical product: it can be a free video, website design or anything valuable that you can bring to the table. Or you can provide them a service like helping them get more traffic from videos.
You can also send your stuff to influential bloggers. In fact, the popular internet marketing blogger ShoeMoney.com publishes a weekly posts where he shows off a free T-shirt that a company sent him (and of course, he also links to their company site):
Another small business link building opportunity that most big businesses don’t bother to take advantage of is University employee and student discounts.All you need to do is find local Universities in your area that have a “University Discount Page” that include links to their partners or businesses which offer the discounts. Then, email the webmaster and ask them to include your discount to the list and perhaps link to your website.
As you can see there are a number of ways which smaller businesses can compete on a link building front without the big pockets that those larger businesses have.