Search engine optimization might sound tricky to a startup business. Gaining website rankings amidst really heavy competition and a large pool of content online is not at all an easy feat. However, SEO is an inevitable part of any marketing strategy which just cannot be missed by a business. The right strategies, actions, and best SEO practices can take your website visibility to a higher position and keep you up in search engine rankings. Being a start up, you would like to fast-track the growth and make an impact on search engine rankings, but remember that SEO can make or break your business online. So it’s better not to take shortcuts with SEO, to achieve results faster because google dislikes all such attempts by businesses and may even penalize the website for breaking the rules. Below are a few steps defining the best SEO practices for startups, what to do and what to avoid to get fast results that last.
Google doesn’t care whether you are a startup or an old business
Google ranks sites higher based on age is just a myth. The fact is Google is both fair and impartial and doesn’t care at all whether your site was registered in 1998, 2010, or 2020. Google attempts to rank content that connects with the audience and engages them. The most relevant content for each search query will be displayed first on the search engines. So startups should focus on actively creating content that encourages their audience to engage. Search engines want to see more relevance and engagement from a brand and it doesn’t care whether you are a startup or an age-old business.
We would like to share a few more things here. Let’s say you have a competitor whose site was made in 2005. This means it has been making website optimization efforts for years and had more time to build up links and brand awareness. They are well versed with SEO tactics and have tried several different marketing methods by now. So they know what works for them and what does not. They have built a brand image for themselves and acquired some positions in the online marketplace. However, your site is fairly new and you are actually in the phase of preparing a startup game plan. Define your SEO goals clearly and focus on your SEO strategy but do not rely solely on SEO. Based on your target audience, create a marketing strategy which blends SEO and other aspects of digital like social media, content marketing to create online success right from the start. This is because SEO and some other techniques go hand in hand. A professional SEO company can help you develop an effective SEO strategy so that you can achieve SEO success right from the start.
What do search engines look for when ranking websites?
If you are a startup looking to up your SEO game and you think stuffing keywords can help you climb the SEO ladder fast, you are wrong and mistaken! While it might be tempting to take shortcuts to speed up the ranking process, keyword stuffing can kill your SEO for startup and hurt your SEO. So avoid such gimmicks or else there is a likelihood of a fall.
While proper keywords are vital to ensuring search engine rankings, there are many other aspects which influence rankings. Focus on the below factors to rank higher the right way in search engines.
- A Secure and Accessible Website (THE RIGHT URL): Your visitors will land on your website’s pages by clicking on a link, so the actual URL of a specific page really matters. Create keyword-optimized and user-friendly URLs that can help users understand what a page is about and Google’s bots easily crawl.
- Page Speed (Including Mobile Page Speed): Page speed has been one of the leading ranking factors for SEO for startups. Google attempts to rank those websites which offer a great website user experience. Fast-loading web pages save the users’ valuable time and deliver the required information in a faster and convenient manner. So identify web performance issues on your site and make sure you have a good page speed.
- Mobile Friendliness: Google has switched to mobile-first since long. Mobile friendly is now a major SEO ranking factor as more people use mobile devices than the desktop to access the web. So make sure you design a mobile-friendly website to make your website rank higher in Google.
- Quality content: SEO and content marketing are very much interconnected and always go hand in hand. Great content can help you drive visitors to your website and improve rankings. So focus on creating relevant, unique and useful content that provides the information users are looking for when they search a query.
- Great user experience (UX) : Today user experience (UX) has become a critical SEO ranking factor. Google recognizes real human behaviour and attempts to rank websites which provide great UX from their pages. Focus on usability and UX and make sure your site is easy to navigate and contains great quality content that would make visitors want to stay and engage. The site elements of your website are like a roadmap for the search engines.
- Proper and relevant Keywords: The importance of keywords in reaching SEO goals can never be denied. Pick the right and relevant keywords and phrases to attract the right audience and drive traffic to your site. Also use the right keywords in your image names and accompanying captions as well. Always remember one rule. Keeping it relevant is more important than cleverness and stuffing keywords.
How does hosting affect SEO rankings?
Whether you are a wedding photography company or own an apparel store, creating a website for your startup is easy but choosing the right hosting provider is tricky and challenging. Your hosting platform acts as the foundation of your website. Dont just fall for any hosting provider and cheap prices and plans. Go for a reliable and high-performing web hosting provider like WordPress, Domain.com etc to boost SEO and compete effectively in the online marketplace.
Websites that operate smoothly and swiftly are more likely to dominate the search engine rankings and results. This is only possible when a website is hosted on a first class hosting server. This is why hosting really matters for SEO for startups. Below are a few things to keep in mind when choosing a web hosting provider.
- Uptime and reliability: You are a startup and you are striving to build an image. Website downtime can be costly in terms of brand reputation and revenue. Choose a hosting provider who ensures that your website is up and running and customers can access your website at any time whether day or night.
- Bandwidth: Bandwidth is the volume of traffic or data transfer your website can handle in a given period of time, typically a month. If your product becomes a hit, you might start attracting more traffic instantly and will require more bandwidth. Are you prepared for it? So consider your bandwidth requirement beforehand based on the size of your web pages. Then look for a hosting provider who can provide the required bandwidth or a higher bandwidth so that more website data can be moved at one time.
- Technical Support: Sometimes things can go haywire! For example, your website can become unavailable no matter how proactive you were to prevent anything that can go wrong. You can’t get it back running and losing visitors and sales. It’s vital to have a responsive support team that’s technically equipped with the expertise to solve your problems and reacts to issues and errors instantly and effectively. Check if your hosting provider offers high quality and timely technical support.
Ready to kickstart SEO but worried about the resources?
Do you own a startup and expect the SEO results of a large business? Most startups do not have ample resources and a skilled SEO team to compete with the biggest names in your industry. And believe us..it’s ok and completely fine! Being a startup, you are in unfamiliar territory and gathering all the ammunition.
With fast-evolving ranking algorithms and SEO techniques, you not just need experienced SEO consultants but a very efficient SEO team who is well versed with all the SEO trends and techniques. Google doesn’t accept compromises when it comes to search optimization and you need to have your fundamentals in place. The sooner you excel in these the faster you’ll be able to build sustainable SEO results and drive SEO growth. Now the good news is that you can hire an experienced and professional SEO agency who can help leverage SEO for startups and leave a mark on the minds of your target consumers. Their resources will work with you as an extension of your in-house team and efficiently and tackle all your worries.