The internet has become an invaluable source for small business marketing and promotions. Offering a large audience for a minimal fee (usually just the cost of internet service), advertising and marketing on the web is a great way to receive maximum exposure for a fraction of the traditional marketing costs.

Entrepreneur Magazine forecasts the widespread growth for small businesses through the growing use of search engine optimization tools, also known as SEO. “Since Google’s fan-named “Pigeon” update in 2014, the importance of local SEO has grown, leading many entrepreneurs to focus on their strategy despite going years without considering a local tangent to their inbound marketing campaign,” Jayson Demers writes. “Others, who already practiced regular local optimization strategies saw the update as an opportunity to increase their efforts even further.”

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But, how can you harness the power of SEO without taking a long course or doing hours of research? This article is here to help by presenting an easy guide to utilizing some of the latest SEO strategies.

The first and most important tool is creating a blog on your business website. Your website showcases your product or service; your blog, in turn, should exhibit your specialized, expert knowledge in your given field. Ensuring your blog is updated frequently with new and engaging content is paramount in drawing traffic to your website.

Knowing how to properly tag your blog posts is also critical. Using keywords in your posts that are associated with your industry, service and product is important. With that said, the unique content is what will draw people to your page, and great content will encourage them to look around and come back. Keyword overload, also known as “keyword stuffing”, can be detrimental to your business. All to say, resist the temptation to stuff your blog posts full of unnecessary keywords.

A second SEO strategy that you can employ is to make sure that your business is listed in online directories like 411.ca. The more places your business shows up in a web search, the more advantageous it is for your business.

411.ca is an online directory and search engine that has over 20 million visitors annually. Like Google, 411.ca offers an advanced search engine. However, 411.ca also offers a comprehensive business review function, one that particularly caters to local Canadian businesses. You can check the 411.ca reviews page to see what customers think of your business and service, which is a true advantage for any small business owner.

411.ca ’s online directory also offers more customized services for businesses looking to increase their SEO and “super charge leads”. In conjunction with Google Ad Words, 411.ca has created a three-tiered system – standard, advanced and extreme – for customers looking to hire a professional to help strengthen their online presence. 411.ca reviews and Ad Words are easy-to-use online tools that can boost web traffic and generate business.

Utilizing a keyword tracker like Google’s Keyword Planner can also help an internet novice develop a robust and effective SEO strategy. With a simple interface, Google’s Keyword Planner not only helps identify the most effective keywords for your customer base, it also lets you view important analytic tools, like estimated clicks and impressions any specific word will generate, as well as historical data on the trendiness of any given word.

Finally, taking a quick look at your competition can help generate new ideas, show you what ideas and topics to stay away from, and let you know how your website compares. Mark Walters, an SEO specialist, offers 100 tips for SEO optimization on his site. He reminds those new to the SEO world that, “No SEO means no visitors from search engines. If you don’t do it then search engines can’t categorize and rank your site for keywords relevant to your business.” So get started today, but also realize that while SEO is proven to help businesses grow and reach audiences, it isn’t an overnight cure. The results may take weeks, even months, but employing SEO strategies is worth it in the long run.