To the non-technical local shopkeeper, getting onto the internet with a small business web design in the first place can seem incredibly difficult but getting found online is even harder.
Because it's not just about having a website, it's making sure that your pages show up on Google and the other search engines for the search terms that best reflect your product or service.
So, you need to find out what your potential customers are typing into the Google search bar and then you need to make sure that there are pages on your site which position those words in the places that the search engine spiders can see them.
Header tags, metadata, alt tags are the main places that the bots sent out by Google and the other search engines will be looking for the clues that tell them what your website is all about so these must be completed with care as it is very tempting to keyword stuff.
But that's just making the page search engine friendly. It's not much good having a page full of words that only the spiders like, you have to think about the visual experience of your reader too. Because they're not just a reader, they're a potential client.
Use the right words in the correct order and they will be picking up the phone to find out more or even buy straightaway.
So you have to look at your website and give it an audit. Ask yourself four questions:
What is the first thing that will jump out at any new reader?
Is the content interesting enough to not only keep them on your site but also to encourage them to click on the other pages to find out more?
Is it patently obvious what service/product you are offering and the benefits that it can provide?
Is there a clear Call to Action (CTA)? An instruction to buy now or learn more with an easy to read phone number so they know exactly what to do?
The most beautiful website in the world is absolutely worthless if no one knows it's there or, if they do get there, they cannot work out what it's about or what they're meant to do.
Concept, Content, Call To Action, Conversion
Of course, it doesn't end there for the small business, web design and on-page SEO are just the things you can see - they deal with the content. The search engines decide the relevance of your website to the search term by analysing Activity and Back links, so the next thing you have to do is small business marketing using social media, back linking, bookmarking and paid advertising tools like AdWords and Facebook or Linked In Ads.
These will drive targeted traffic back to your site where your clear content and concise calls to action will result in sales.