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Can you use SEO to Compete with Bigger Businesses in Search Results? Find out more in this post and discover if you can use SEO to level the playing field with your deeper pocketed competitors.

One problem smaller businesses face when competing for real estate on search engine results pages, is that of bigger businesses being difficult to compete with and over take. However, both sides in this situation have advantages that can help them make grounds in different ways. 

A bigger site may well have a number of advantages that can make even thinking about competing seem a daunting task, some of these include:

  • Their budget – a bigger site is likely to have a bigger budget to focus on SEO and other forms of digital marketing which means they have resources to push a lot of areas of their sites
  • Domain authority – sites that have been going longer and have historic value in their domain are seen as more authoritative and trustworthy
  • Link profile – bigger sites (say Amazon for example) are likely to have far more links from a broader range of sources than a small independent shop.
  • Trustworthiness – using Amazon as an example again, people are likely to visit them over a smaller business online, as they have a long history of being a trusted brand that can be relied on.
  • Ability to act fast – a bigger, higher budget site can react to events and keep on trend quickly but also afford to pump resources in to make this happen.

These all seem like big issues and on the face of it could put some businesses off putting too much into an SEO strategy – but should that be the case? Here are some great SEO techniques to compete with bigger businesses in search results:

  • Focus on local – targeting a local market can help out with the way your business is portrayed in search results. Regardless of whether you operate on a national level you can still work on local SEO to beat your competition in that area,
  • Make use of long tail keywords – this is a case of focusing on the less common keywords that have high volumes of searches and are difficult to rank for. So rather than “shoes”, you could aim for “winter shoes buying guide” as a keyword to be found for.
  • Focus on a niche – in a similar notion as the idea of longer tail keywords being the idea of taking on rivals by focusing on a niche of your business will help you gain traction. Say for example that your business offers a bespoke service that makes it different from a bigger business selling similar products, then emphasising that can help you build a niche online service around it
  • Make social more personal – this clearly depends on what it is your business does as to how much people will interact with you (a boutique style shop may have more people wanting to engage than say an engineering company), however if you are engaged with your customers you can help your ability to be found, and get important links back to your site, as well as a reputation for being personable and helpful
  • Become an authority – a lot of bigger brands have sprawling sites packed with products, however they can often miss the chance to be an authority on subjects. A smaller business can jump on this, writing well informed accessible content on the industry and related topics can help make you an authority, but also helps with niche and long tail ideas already mentioned.

Can you use SEO to compete with bigger businesses successfully?

One of the best examples of how this can work is our client Hose Shop. They come up against a number of bigger suppliers and manufacturers selling a similar product range. With well executed keyword research, content creation and technical optimisation, they have managed to be far more visible than their size would suggest for big terms within the industry. Alongside this, creating content in a field where information has previously been scarce has given the opportunity for them to be an authority.

As a smaller business you can compete with bigger businesses by using SEO. If you want to be more prominent in the SERPs, then contact Zelst today!

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