How-to Trump the Competition in Search Rankings

Small business owners are up against companies that have very large budgets to place into their marketing campaigns but there are definite ways to run “circles” around the competition if you’re ready to do the heavy lifting.
From: Alex Summers
July 9th, 2013 | 0 Comments

Competition can be very stiff if you’re in a competitive industry and, as you’d expect, a very competitive location (for example: New York City). Small business owners are up against companies that have very large budgets to place into their marketing campaigns but there are definite ways to run “circles” around the competition if you’re ready to do the heavy lifting.

The following are three of the most powerful ways to trump the competition in search rankings.

Go Professional

The trouble with big competition is that they have the money to invest in marketing, hiring of employees, and launching big advertising campaigns which may not be readily available to the average small business owner that took their products or services online.

To add to the frustration – small business owners are stressed on time because there aren’t as many individuals able to handle the day-to-day operations. For this reason, you should seek professionals.

Areas you may want to invest would be:

  • SEO services
  • Ecommerce development
  • Advertising management
  • Social media

Professionals, in each of these elements of online business, will free up time for the small business owner so they can focus on other important actions (such as closing big deals with partners).

To-do: It’s recommended to hire a Social Media Marketing Company to increase your website’s traffic because many (if not the majority) of business owners don’t truly understand how to fully utilize the social networks for search rankings and traffic generation. Social media is one of the best options for business owners to gain an edge on the larger competition because the “big boys” are generally stuck behind paperwork and hierarchy which prevents them from using social media on a real level (what users actually want).

Develop a Unique Selling Point

A unique selling point (USP) is what makes you different than all the other competitors; it’s what conveys your goals, standards, and value you achieve to deliver. The reason a USP is immensely powerful for search ranking comes down to its ability to build a strong brand for the business. Having a head-turning unique selling point will allow visitors to immediately understand what they can expect if they choose you as their primary provider of a good or service.

To-do:  Spend some time thinking about what makes your business different from the others and then write down a one sentence “elevator pitch” that explains it all; take that USP and apply it to areas of your website such as the About Us page, main product/service copy, and within highly visible elements such as at the top of the website sidebar.

Embrace Content Marketing

A long-term plan for search ranking and growth comes through the process of content marketing which, as the name implies, is the process of using content to market your brand, offers, and build authority.

Content allows you to share your expertise which, in turn, increases the chance members of your community will return to your website (since you’re delivering them great value). Crafting great content and having a plan in place as to how it’s formed, where it’s placed, and how it’s promoted will not only set in motion a greater chance of ranking well in search engines for long-tail keywords (these are usually the “buying” phrases people use) but it also gives your community something to share on their social media feeds.

To-do: Sit down and brainstorm (either by yourself or with your team) the most frequently asked questions about your business, products, services, and industry. Categorize each of the content ideas and further plan how to interlink each piece to create a natural flow of information. Delegate who will create each piece and begin publishing, regularly, to your website. Follow through the process by updating your community about this new information and by doing the “rounds” by building links back to these valuable content assets.

As you can see – it’s very possible to trump the competition if you’re willing to put the time, energy, and budget behind your cause (even when you’re up against stiff competition). Stand your ground with a USP, know when to rely on professional services, and utilize content for better search placement – you can do this!