SEO for small service businesses

SEO for small service businesses is difficult. You’re competing against well established businesses that are bigger than you who have a lot of good quality, well optimized content on their websites. This system helps give you a leg up when you’re getting started.

The important point about this system.

Each blog post links back to the category page it’s listed on. When Google sees a lot of blog posts linking back to one central category page, or hub page, Google thinks that hub page is important. You can use this linking structure to help you rank higher for your most difficult to rank for head keywords.

What you must do.

Write several blog posts and assign them to the same WordPress category. Then add a text link in each blog post that links back to that post’s category archive page.

The clickable part of the link should use your head key word surrounded by relevant text. We call these links contextual links.

You can describe this system in several ways.

  • Cornerstone content.
  • Category archive pages.
  • Hub and spoke pages.

The system we use and how it works.

Hub and spoke.

Visualize this system by thinking a bicycle wheel hub and the spokes that hold the hub securely in the center of that wheel. Your category archive page is the hub and each blog post is a spoke connected to that hub by a clickable link. The hub is at the center, everything else revolves around this hub, the hub (category archive page) is the most important part of the structure. If you take the hub away, the wheel collapses. But you also need the spokes. Every spoke (blog post) makes the wheel stronger.

When you use this system, you don’t write a web page, you write a multi blog post resource. Then you organizing those blog posts using a WordPress category. This category archive page and blog posts structure gives you a hub and spoke linking structure.

These blog posts link to the category archive page.
These blog posts link to the category archive page.

First you make a category archive page.

In the WordPress dashboard make a category for every head keyword you want Google to list your site for. WordPress can then automatically list all posts saved in that category. The posts are listed in category archive pages. So each category archive page becomes a hub page listing all blog posts in that category.

Next, you write blog posts and assign them to the relevant categories.

This is the important bit!

You add a clickable text link inside each blog post. The link takes the reader back to that post’s category archive page. But, and this matters for SEO, the link guides readers, and Google, back to the category archive page.

Google can now count the number of links going to the category archive page. And in Google, more links mean higher ranking.

Improve SEO for small businesses by naming categories and blog posts using SEO keywords..
These blog posts link to the category archive page.

Blog post link text.

The clickable part of the text links, which point from the individual blog posts back to the category archive page, contains the head keyword inside a long tail keyword.

Naming the category and blog posts.

You use your main or head keyword to name the category. You use a different long tail keyword to name each post inside that category.

The link text.

You place clickable text links in each individual blog post in your category. The clickable part of the text links that point to the hub page, contains your head keyword inside a long tail keyword.

My category is called content writer, so I named my link content writer.
My category is called content writer so link to that category using the words content writer.

SEO optimizing the category and posts.

You optimize the category page for your head keyword, and you optimize each blog post for a long tail key word.

To understand this system, you need to understand what certain terms mean.

  • WordPress.
  • Category archive page.
  • Web page and blog post.
  • Head keyword.
  • Long tail keyword.

WordPress.

WordPress is software that makes your website work.

Category archive page.

You save most of the content on a WordPress website as blog posts. You organize those posts into categories. WordPress lists those posts in category archive pages.

Web page and blog post.

Web pages are independent of each other. They you connect them using the navigation bar or web links.

A blog post looks like a web page. But blog posts only exist inside categories. Before you can save a blog post, you must choose which category to save it in. Every category has a category archive page that lists all posts in that category.

Hub and spoke.

Visualize this system by thinking of a bicycle wheel hub and the spokes that hold the hub securely in the center of that wheel. Your category archive page is the hub and each blog post is a spoke connected to that hub. The hub is at the center, everything else revolves around this hub, the hub (category archive page) is the most important part of the structure, if you take away the hub the wheel collapses. But you also need the spokes. Every spoke (blog post) makes the wheel stronger.

Head keyword.

In search engine optimization (SEO) you must choose the search term you’d like to be found for in Google. This could be 24 hour plumber, content writer, or garden designer. We call these short search strings head keywords.

Long tail keywords.

Because it’s so hard to rank for these short head keywords, we write blog posts using longer keyword strings. 24 hour plumber in Bradford, service business content writer, and cottage garden designer, are long tail keywords.