Author Topic: Ideas on SEO/marketing for a tiny webite  (Read 1658 times)

kiwi

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Ideas on SEO/marketing for a tiny webite
« on: November 27, 2016, 10:26:33 AM »
I've set up a website for my mom's translation micro-business (oldgermanletters.com), and she's been getting some business here and there from it. She's not desperate for the money, but she gets the biggest thrill out of feeling like she still has something to contribute to the world (she's 83). I get the blow-by-blow of each customer interaction, each email forwarded on to me, etc. She's interacted with customers all over the world - England, Germany, Israel.

The only problem is, she only gets about 1 customer a month. She'd love one a week. I looked into Google adwords, and it turns out that there's not enough search traffic to make it worthwhile. Not to mention that it's much more expensive than I thought.

If anyone would like to take a look at the website and give feedback on how to make it rank higher in Google, that would be much appreciated!

AngryOcean

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Re: Ideas on SEO/marketing for a tiny webite
« Reply #1 on: November 27, 2016, 10:54:38 AM »
What a fun idea, I don't have a lot of experience with this stuff but here are some of the basics you may want to try.
 
Look at key words that have a higher search volume. For her specific business I would look up key words around family tree, history and ancestry. Try and implement some of those words into your home or services pages.

The other thing is to submit your sitemaps to google (google.com/webmasters) and bing through their webmasters tools. It will cause them to look over your site to look for new material and keywords hopefully increasing the amount of people they send to your site.

Finally, if you can post your website link to various forums, possibly search and reach out to smaller ancestry sites and similar to feature your moms site.

lizh

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Re: Ideas on SEO/marketing for a tiny webite
« Reply #2 on: November 27, 2016, 10:58:00 AM »
I would add google analytics to the site (it is free) and try to see where she is getting traffic from now.  It may unveil some good ideas that she could expand on. (possibly a forum she could contribute to (and she could put her website and service in her signature)  Has she asked her customers where/how they found her?  I agree google adwords is probably not the place. 

Is anyone else online doing what she does? (even different languages) If so, investigate what they are doing. (check their backlinks and overall online footprint).
Liz

kudy

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Re: Ideas on SEO/marketing for a tiny webite
« Reply #3 on: November 27, 2016, 11:30:02 AM »
What you have so far is pretty good! Thinking specifically about SEO, with a super-niche topic like this, it can be hard to find the keywords that people are searching, but focusing your content around a few key phrases is important. I did a bit of keyword brainstorming...

Unfortunately, the word "letters" has multiple meanings, and some of the people searching "old german letters" may be looking for info on alphabet characters - some of the more common modifiers people are using with the phrase seem to indicate they are talking more about the alphabet characters:

old german capital letters
old german cursive letters
old german letters keyboard
old german letters of the alphabet

You might consider using "documents" in place of "letters" in some places - with the phrase, "old german documents" as a root phrase, I see a little traction with terms like these:

translating old german documents
old german documents ww2
translation german english documents
translate german documents needed
translate scanned documents german english
german documents translated into english

There might also be a bit of search volume around "handwritten" terms, I am seeing:

translate handwritten german to english
translate handwritten german
translate handwritten german to english

There are a few places you'll want to make sure to use your chosen keywords - in the page title (<title> tag), and in the main heading at the top of each page (<h1> or main heading tag). If you feel like doing some reading, the Moz beginner's guide is great (https://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo). This chapter has specifics on keyword usage and on-page optimization that you should definitely apply.

There are dozens of other factors that can have small effects on rankings (mobile-friendly layout, using an SSL certificate, adding a privacy policy page, changing image file names to include keywords, etc.), but the biggest impact beyond good on-page optimization with well-targeted keywords will be incoming links. If you can encourage related websites around the web to link to the domain, you will see rankings for related keywords increase. "Building" links to a website is one of the hardest and most controversial aspects of SEO (there are more chapters in the linked Moz guide about best practices in link building).

I love AngryOcean's ideas for other marketing and outreach - the more exposure you can get the site on forums and related websites, the more likely you will gain some valuable links to the site. It will be important to avoid "spamming" communities with promotion, and would be more effective to ease in as a genuine participant. Manually promoting the website/service will be time-intensive, but maybe your mom is savvy enough to start participating in a few communities related to genealogy and family history? SEO helps you rank well for people who are already searching your service, but there's a whole world of people out there that don't yet know they want the service, as well. Building relationships that lead to promotion in the right circles could be very impactful.

P.S. most/all search engines these days completely ignore the "keywords" meta tag, and some (Bing) have even said they penalize the rankings of a website if they are using that meta tag, so I'd recommend removing the meta keywords tags from pages ("<meta name='keywords'...>").
« Last Edit: November 27, 2016, 11:32:16 AM by kudy »

kiwi

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Re: Ideas on SEO/marketing for a tiny webite
« Reply #4 on: November 27, 2016, 10:07:12 PM »
Thanks for the great ideas. I added Google Analytics to it (I'm using the free version of Weebly for the website), and also changed the text of the front page, trying to make it more SEO friendly with some of your keyword ideas, kudy. My mom isn't up to contributing in forums and such like, but that's a great idea.

I look forward to seeing what Google Analytics shows....