DIY SEO For 2017

Google has us all by the balls. For the small business owner, especially local brick and mortar retail, trying to get your business information visible and appearing on Google search is now seeming to be more and more challenging. Many have caught on to the fact that the interwebs aren’t going anywhere and the internet is changing the way we do business and how people shop. To ignore your digital space as a business is a death sentence to your bottom line. You’re on Facebook, you have an Instathingy, you know you need to be on Google. So what do you do? You might be able to bake cakes, but your no techie or SEO guru. Never fear! We are here to provide a few must have tips to DIY your SEO for 2017. This is not a comprehensive guide, but a simple overview. Advanced SEO geeks should click your back button now. If you’re a newbie, stick around…


  1. Google is rewarding mobile first. 
    Google is now treating mobile search as all search. Therefore, if your website is not mobile friendly or lacks the load time or features necessary to load and be used properly on a smart phone, your rankings on Google will be buried. Look at the measure of mobile search over the past year versus desktop search:
    Action point: Make sure your website is mobile friendly. If your site is already mobile friendly, but not mobile optimized, make sure to do an audit to see if your site loads on all forms of smart phones and tablets. Contact your current webmaster or hire a web designer to redesign your site to add the features necessary. 
  2. Voice search and audio is going to be the next frontier.
    Google now wants to break into the home market. You’ve probably seen the advertisements for Google home, voice activated speaker. This totally makes sense since, speaking something is naturally more easier than having to type or write something. Search is moving more towards voice. This only serves to provide Google’s users with even better search results and besides, you don’t have to be attached to a desktop or device to receive an answer.Action point: Mark up your content using rich snippets and structured data. Using structured data allows Google to display your results where users can directly interact with your content right from the search results. Here is an example: 

  3. Basic fundamentals of SEO are a must 
    If you’re still wondering what a title tag is or your website still doesn’t feature any kind of blog you need to get ahead of the game or get left behind. A blog featuring relevant, valuable content to your target customers is a search magnet for prospective customers on Google. Not everyone is a writer, so you may have to hire a copywriter to develop some deep, keyword rich content to post on your website. This content also serves as social juice to share on social media platforms. Don’t stuff keywords though! Make the content real, relevant and providing real solutions for people that are looking for the products or services you provide. Some of Severity Design blog posts are the main traffic generator for our website. Take those visitors, offer them something of value and capture their information so you can begin developing a relationship with them. Action point: Start blogging! Set aside some time to do the research to find out what your customers are searching for, what questions they have and provide the answers on your blog. Bang out 10-12 articles that you can post on your website. Get a few employees involved, or heck even your kids! They have tons of time! 


Hopefully this will get you started enough to realize that one of these 3 things are lacking on your website. SEO is not completely dead, but the game has surely changed and continues to do so since Google is in control of the online marketplace. We need to stay up on trends, Google updates and make changes necessary. If your product or service is something that highly depends on website traffic, you might want to consider hiring an SEO company like Severity Design to give you an SEO audit to see where there might be room for improvement. 

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Russell is the founder and owner of Severity Design. Severity Design is a digital marketing studio located in Elgin, Illinois, a Northwest Suburb of Chicago. We help small businesses get the word out and gain attention.
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