When your target customers perform a search in a major search engine like Google for your products or services, there are only two possible outcomes – they find your website or those of your competitors. Getting on page one may seem daunting, considering that there are about 40,000 Google searches performed every second. But even as a small business, this is possible if you take the time to learn a few SEO tactics and implement them.

Here are 10 best SEO tips you can apply to your online marketing strategy to help your business effectively reach your target audience:

Build Your Website on SEO Friendly WordPress
You don’t have to invest in a complicated website. As a small business, it is best to build a website on a simple and sustainable platform that’s easy to use and simple to maintain. WordPress is the best framework because you can update it yourself whenever necessary and it is extremely SEO friendly.

Install “WordPress SEO” Plugin by Yoast
The plugin WordPress SEO by Yoast will guide you through the process of optimizing your WordPress site for SEO purposes. It manages of all the technical on-site optimization stuff for you and helps you get your Google Authorship correctly setup with Google Plus, so your pages and blog posts are highlighted in search results pages on Google.

Create a List of Target Keyword Phrases
This list serves as your starting point for finding your current page rankings and developing your blog posts and landing pages. An online tool, Google Keyword Planner, can help you identify the most relevant keyword phrases in your marketplace. Generally, small businesses will need less than 50 target keyword phrases in their list, but if you’re operating an e-commerce store, you may need to include 100 or more on your list.

Track Your Rankings
Tracking your rankings helps determine who your top competitors are and where you’re currently ranking. Choose an engine rank checker to track your ranking in the 3 most important search engines – Google, Yahoo, and Bing. There are free and paid rank checker tools that will allow you to monitor your website ranking in these search results for important keywords. You can also use these tools to track your website ranking trends against competing sites, as well as against your own marketing campaigns so you can better analyze the effectiveness of your marketing efforts. If you are not too confident doing this on your own, you can sign up for an online SEO training so you can develop your online marketing skills further.

Publish Weekly Blogs
The key to top rankings is publishing a lot of great content. Blogging 1 to 3 times a week not only allows you to provide fresh, relevant content for your audience, it also helps your website get noticed by Google. Having a section dedicated to blogs on your website will bring the greatest benefits for SEO.

Engage in Social Media
Social media channels are where most online engagements happen. Establishing your online presence through social media posts that are helpful and relevant to your target market’s needs and wants is the best way to get your website content distributed to a larger audience. Social media sharing has become the new link building.

Create a High-Value Landing Page Around Your Top 10 Keyword Phrases
Once you have determined the keyword phrases that matter most to your business, those that yield the greatest results, create one powerful landing page for each of those keywords. These landing pages should have at least 1,500 words and contain valuable, relevant content for your target audience. Including opt-in forms on your landing page will help convert your visitors into leads faster.

Guest Blog on Popular Websites in Your Niche
One great link building tactic to implement is guest blogging. Research on what blogs are popular in your niche. Identify the thought leaders in your industry and build connections with them via social media so it is easier to ask for their permission to post a blog on their website eventually.

Sign up for Google+
Sign up for Google+ and complete all the relevant fields that will help you describe what your business is all about. Spending just 5 to 10 minutes every day sharing your content on Google will allow you to effectively connect with your target audience. Make sure you update the details about your business, especially your business name, address, and phone, whenever any of these change.

Optimize for Mobile
As more and more users are now searching for products and services using their mobile devices and with the recent Google update labeling which sites are optimized for mobile SEO, it is important that your site is ‘mobile-friendly’. Your target customers are more likely to click a website that will enable them to browse more easily with their smartphone than one that they will have to zoom in to read the text more clearly. You can test your website using Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test.

Michelle Rubio is an experienced SEO copywriter and blogger since 2010. She has been working with various businesses, big and small, in the United States, UK, and Australia. You can see more of her works and experiences in her LinkedIn profile.