Fresh off of a nice, but brief talk with the Eastern Monmouth Area Chamber of Commerce, where I really had to streamline a longer SEO talk into just the basics, it got me thinking about some very basic stuff small business owners can keep in mind to help with their SEO in 2020. I am going to do a series of posts on P,L, & R. Proximity, Links, and Reviews. This will help, though admittedly oversimplifying a complex industry, give small business owners more to focus on what they themselves can do to move the needle in the rankings.
It should be stated that technical issues can really mess up your SEO and that having a fast site that is easy for Google to index is important. These are more advanced items that your SEO and developer typically have to get involved with. Assuming no major issues there or having a little help with these things on occasion, the P,L, & R are top-level things you can focus on that can keep moving your forward.
This first post will dig into Proximity, and what does that mean.
Proximity, Links, & Reviews for SEO: Proximity
If you are an SEO geek like me, you know that proximity has always been the top local ranking factor. That makes sense as a business in San Francisco shouldn’t show up in a local search in New Jersey. That is simply a good user search experience. However, in the local world that has become nuanced as Google better understands service area businesses and other factors grow in importance. In most cases, you don’t have a lot of control of your physical proximity, other than opening other locations that are closer to more people. Our proximity today is not meant to talk about physical proximity, though it overlaps a little bit. It is more about conceptual and content related proximity.
With the Google algorithm getting smarter about longer tail keyword searches, or more specific searches and what searcher intent is, studies have shown that siloing content can be helpful for both the user experience and the search engines. Putting like topics near each other and making them easy to find, helps create better entity understanding for the search engines and the users. Easily breaking down your content and navigation so that users can find the exact content they need as quickly as possible will help you move up in the rankings. Keep your blog posts organized and on topic and make them easy to find. Remember you are there to answer the user’s issue and you should clearly define your services and offer similar topics close together.
In order to provide siloing, you do need to continue to create good, useful content about your subject areas. It isn’t as hard as many may think. Every business has questions they answer over and over from clients and prospects. Every one of these answers can be an individual blog post that is linked out to and connected to from the content category you are talking about. You can build content around all of your major product or service categories.
Topic proximity could, and often does, have more relation to your physical location. However topical proximity can also be industry related. When I mention topical proximity I generally mean catering to your market. If you are targeting New Jersey or New York City, talk about how you specifically are the right choice to help customers in that specific geography. If you are hyper-local and targeting a specific town, discuss what makes your work in that area unique. This is not only a great opportunity for more content ideas, it as a great way to separate yourself with content from national companies that drop into your market. They don’t usually know your area as well as you do and you can write content to better target those searches. Specific, thorough content sells. Write about your market.
This holds true for other types of targets. If you find that your best customer base all falls within a certain industry or broader classification, you can create content with “proximity” to that industry. Targeting the dentist market with websites. Write specifically about how you help relieve their specific dental industry issues and how you have experience dealing with them. Building your content around your market sounds basic, but many overlook it. You want to be as specific and targeted as possible when you are the little guy. You can make up ground in some of the other areas like Links and reviews, by beating them with content proximity.
We will go deeper into links and reviews and how they all help each other out in the next posts in the series. Give us a call if you want help with your own SEO program.