The principles behind SEO make sense for businesses looking to capture interest in a particular field, industry or product type: A consumer enters the phrase “brown spots in lawn” into Google’s search bar, and lawn services providers pop up with content filled with tips and tricks as well as advertisements for useful products. This tactic works wonders for businesses with large audiences that address problems most everyone faces.
Yet, some businesses don’t have large audiences – is SEO as effective for them? If you are operating within a niche business, read on to learn how you can effectively leverage SEO for online success.
Understand Search Volume
Search volume is an important concern for SEO; it is essentially how many people are searching with the intent of finding and interacting with your niche. Researching search volume will give you a good idea of the size of your online audience and what terms they are using to search for your industry or your business in particular.
The best way to research search volume is through Google’s Keyword Planner, which you can access through your Ads Account. Here, you can find graphs pertaining to the popularity of different words and phrases used in search. Because you are working within a niche, you are likely to discover that your search volume is low – but it shouldn’t be non-existent. If you do try to use a keyword phrase that is associated with little to no traffic on Google, the Planner should tell you that your keywords aren’t contributing to SEO success.
Search intent is a bit different from keywords; while terms and phrases used in the search query factor into intent, they aren’t always directly descriptive of what a web user wants in the search results. Google is getting better at understanding and identifying intent through machine learning tools like BERT, and you should try to work with search intent within your content to increase the number of keywords you rank for and boost your search volume.
Research Keyword Specificity
Usually, specific keyword phrases are better for SEO because there is less competition for them. For instance, huge corporations tend to rank for “financial services,” but smaller, local businesses have more opportunity to rank for “financial services Modesto CA.” However, there is a fine line between appropriately specific and obscure – and you need to be careful not to cross that line and lose whatever meager web traffic you can get.
Keyword research is difficult even at the best of times, but when you are trying to balance on the edge of specificity, you should consider hiring an SEO expert. SEO agencies have the right keyword tools to help you track and choose the best terms and phrases to target, especially when your search volume is low to begin with. Plus, experienced SEOs know more about managing search intent with keywords.
Research Search Competition
It is likely that you operate within a smaller niche because you discovered a need and worked to fill it. You might be the only business of your kind – but you will still probably have some sort of competition for your keywords.
To dominate in your chosen keyword categories, you first need to know what pages you are up against. It is important to note that your competition might be competitors in your industry, or they might be ranking for your keywords for a completely unrelated reason. Regardless, you should look into their content and SEO tactics and work to best them in every way, from domain speed and image quality to content quantity and relevance.
Develop Niche Content
Content is easily your most powerful tool in attracting a niche audience. The more content you have, and the higher quality it is, the higher your search ranking will be – irrespective of the volume of searches coming your way. You likely know your business and industry inside and out, so you can begin developing content for your audience today, right now.
However, creating your own content isn’t a terrific long-term strategy. For one, lacking an outsider’s perspective on your industry and products can be a hinderance in your business’s ability to relate to and engage its audience. For another, you might not have the time or skill to produce high-quality content on a schedule, or you might lack a network of publishers for placement of your content to garner backlinks. Now or later, you should contract content marketing services, which will provide the expertise you need to execute your niche content properly.
It is more difficult to practice SEO within a niche market, and while you might quickly see your domain rise to the top of the search results, you might never obtain the huge influx of traffic that businesses in larger industries experience. Still, SEO remains an important digital marketing tactic, and you should look into leveraging search for business success today.