As a small retail business, appealing to your target audience is everything.
To ensure a rewarding in-person customer experience, you will hire amiable staff, have a welcoming environment, and maintain a favorable clientele. But, what about the online perception of your business? Is it the same?
SEO (search engine optimisation) campaigns are proven to create an attractive and intriguing online environment for your retail business.
Boiled down, SEO components amount to two words: “user experience.” While SEO can be complex, your SEO campaign will be successful if you provide the best user experience as compared to your competitors.
We’ve compiled this article to share foundational ways that your business can utilise SEO and maximise online user experience.
Ensure your website is secure
Google states that security is a top priority regarding ranking websites. Having an HTTPS website is essential for SEO. HTTPS is the secure version of HTTP, the protocol by which data is sent between your browser and the connected website.
On an HTTPS site, all communication between your browser and the website is encrypted. This helps protect against eavesdropping and man-in-the-middle attacks, if someone tries to intercept your communication.
To check if your website has HTTPS security, look at the URL. If it starts with “https://,” it’s a secure site. If it begins with “http://,” it’s not. Google also displays a lock icon in the Chrome browser when you visit a site, to indicate a secure site.
Increase website speed while remaining mobile friendly
Mobile friendly websites offer an excellent online user experience. You only have a few seconds to make a first impression, so your website must look great on desktops and mobile devices.
Nearly 61% of website traffic in 2020 was from mobile phones. You can verify whether your website is mobile-friendly here. If your site looks odd on their phone screen, people are highly likely to click away and move on to another.
To make sure that your website is user-friendly on mobile devices:
● Use responsive design
● Optimise images
● Limit pop-ups
● Use large font sizes
● Stick to one call-to-action (CTA) per page
● Use plenty of white space
● Keep menus short and sweet
Additionally, here are a few ways for increasing your website speed. Overall, you want a website that loads in three seconds or less.
Sites with a lot of videos and large images, should compress them, or use a content delivery network (CDN), which is a group of servers worldwide that deliver web pages based on the user’s geographic location.
Also, use Google Analytics, a free service that offers detailed statistics about website visitors.
Google Analytics is essential for understanding your audience, their needs, and how they interact with your website. Understanding this data can improve your marketing efforts, website design, and user experience.
Intuitive website design and navigation
Your website should be easy to navigate for users and search engine crawlers. A well-designed website will have a logical structure with straightforward navigation that allows visitors to find what they’re looking for quickly and easily.
To make your website more intuitive:
● Use descriptive titles and meta descriptions
● Organise your content into categories and subcategories
● Use breadcrumb navigation
● Add a search bar
● Include a sitemap
● Make sure your pages are mobile friendly
Creating an intuitive website design takes time and effort, but is well worth it. The user experience improves and it helps your site rank higher in searches.
Improve content relevancy
Content relevancy has a significant impact on your SEO. To ensure the topics you’re writing about are relevant to your business, products or services, you must write helpful and valuable content for your target audience.
Try this for content creation. Construct an ideal customer persona. Give them a name, age, occupation, some interests, and other places that they frequent. Then, ask what types of searches would they Google?
Thinking this way should generate topics of interest to your target audience. From there, you will begin to see the articles that you want to write.
For instance, let’s say you own a coffee shop. An article that would likely brew great interest for your customers could be, “The Seven Types of Coffee: Everything You Need to Know”.
The content of this article would be both relevant to your business, and be something that coffee-lovers would want to read.
Another way to ensure that you are writing relevant content is to perform keyword research using a tool like Google AdWords Keyword Planner, or Moz Keyword Explorer.
These tools allow you to see how many people are searching for a particular term or phrase, and how difficult it would be to rank that keyword. A more expensive yet all inclusive tool is Ahrefs, according to Digital Authority Partners.
Utilise video and images
Four times as many consumers would rather watch a video than read its contents. Using high quality images and videos that are relevant to your business is one of the easiest ways to improve the online user experience.
Including images and videos on your website also help improve your SEO. Because the website pages are more visually appealing, people will engage longer. The longer they spend on your site, the better for your SEO.
Further, videos are an excellent way to share your business’s story with visitors.
They allow potential customers to connect to your business before they even enter your actual doors. How-to’s, product demonstrations, and customer testimonials are other possible ideas to effectively use videos on your site.
Small retail businesses can improve their online user experience by utilizing SEO techniques such as optimising website content, easy navigation, and including pertinent images and videos.
Applying these tips will help keep visitors on your site longer, which yields a higher ranking on search engine results.
Finally, high quality images and videos help attract potential customers to your business, and keep them engaged as they learn about your amazing products and services. We hope your small business thrives online and in person.