Having a great set of products and a user-friendly website are only the half the battle when it comes to gaining traction online. For businesses to get noticed, they need website traffic. But what do you do when there isn’t enough traffic to your site? The answer is to revamp your SEO strategy.

Search engine optimization (SEO) is a key step to increasing a small business’ visibility to new customers. Proper SEO management will increase the ranking of your site in search engines’ results so customers can easily find your online store. Here are the top four need-to-know basics of SEO to help you see Web traffic results quickly.

1. How do search engines work?

When a search engine displays results, the results can be separated into two types: sponsored and organic. Sponsored links are where the website owner has paid for their site to appear at the top of search results. What SEO focuses on is the organic results: Listings that are chosen due to their relevance and popularity for the keywords and topics being searched. This infographic is a great overview of how Google gathers site information and uses it during searches.

2. How can I learn where I stand and what my needs are?

If you’re just starting out with SEO, it is crucial to know where you stand today. Tools such as Alexa provide a large amount of detail on your rank and traffic. You can also consider using some 3rd party Chrome extensions such as Meta SEO Inspector. This tool allows you to evaluate your site’s SEO needs and successes on a page-by-page basis. Using these tools can show you where your traffic is coming from and what is helping, as well as what pages aren’t getting adequate traffic and what these pages may be missing.

3. How can I improve my SEO ranking?

Most people are aware that keywords and titles affect their website’s SEO. Consider these tips to boost your website’s rankings with the Web crawlers that scan your site:

  • Images: At the end of the day, search engine crawlers are just computer programs. No matter how good your product image, if there’s no text associated with the image, it will have no impact on your rankings. When adding images to pages, including an image description gives Web crawlers more to work with.
  • Blogs: Blogs are a great way to add relevant, noticeable content to your site. Focus on keeping your blogs relevant to your customer base and their needs for a sure-fire way to boost your site’s ranking. An easy way to get started is by blogging about the features of one of your products.
  • Get other sites to link to you: This can be done in many different ways. Two are creating content that other sites will want to link to (helpful infographics are great for generating outside interest) and making reciprocal link arrangements with related websites. If you belong to any trade organizations that have an online presence, they may be open to having you provide content, such as a post for their blog, that includes a link to your site.

4. How do I monitor results?

Once you’ve started making changes to your SEO strategy, periodically review the change in rankings from where you started. This will help you to determine what SEO efforts have been helpful in boosting your traffic and if you are reaching your goals.

For other tips on boosting your online marketing success, see How to Weave Social Media Into the Fabric of the Business.

This article was originally published on the SAP Anywhere Knowledge Center and has been republished with permission.

Blog originally published on the Digitalist Magazine