How and Why SEO Works for Your Marine Business

What exactly is SEO?

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) refers to the practices a business uses to increase the visibility of its website in a search engine. 

Essentially, a search engine uses the information and interactions on your website to decide how important it is. It wants to send searchers to websites that are relevant and helpful, so it adjusts the results accordingly. 

If I search for “marine electronics”, Google will give me a list of what it thinks I’m looking for. If I choose the first result (that Google thinks is most relevant), spend 30 seconds on the homepage and decide this isn’t really what I’m looking for and press the back button, Google will log this information and note that the website may not be the best choice for someone searching “marine electronics”.  These algorithms – along with many others – create the search result rankings we see. 

 

Why is SEO important?

SEO drives more organic visitors to your website. This is targeted traffic you don’t need to pay for, and it lands them directly on your page (vs social media accounts or other corners of the web). 

If businesses are landing on your site and quickly leaving, the search engine won’t want to prioritize it on search results! This may be because your site isn’t associated strongly enough with the right keywords, or maybe your site isn’t answering the questions your searchers are looking for. 

 

Ways to incorporate SEO

If SEO is important to you (it should be!), it’s possible to hire an SEO expert who can completely optimize your site and continue to keep it that way. However, there are things you can do to start improving your website for SEO without needing to hire a dedicated specialist…

  • Blog

Quality content is the most important component to SEO. This isn’t just promotional copy on your site, but includes consistent blog posting that answer the questions or solve the problems that your readers have. Educational, informative, and/or entertaining posts will keep readers visiting your site and sticking around for a while. Blogging also means relevant keywords will show up over and over on your site. 

I’ll talk about this more in another blog post because it’s so important and more complex.

  • Mobile Version

 Web browsing is happening on mobile devices more frequently than ever before, and Google in particular has started prioritizing mobile-optimized sites. How does your site look on your phone? Do the images resize correctly and is the text readable? 

 You know if you’re searching for something on a mobile phone, it’s usually because you’re out running around and looking for a quick solution to a problem. If you need to flip the phone sideways, zoom in and out, or wait ages for the page to load, you’re more likely to leave that website and find another that is quick and easy to navigate.

  •  Images/Layout/Visual

This goes for any format – mobile, tablet, or desktop – and includes things like: 

Breaking up text walls with headings and spaces

Incorporating high quality videos and photos

Make sure all pages, links, and information are current and working

Appropriate file sizes (such as photos) and pages that don’t take too long/too much data to load – this is especially important in the marine industry, where the site may be viewed by someone who is offshore, traveling, or otherwise on a slow or expensive internet connection. 

An overall attractive website that is not too overwhelming or difficult to navigate

 

The list of tasks you can do to improve SEO is long and complicated. Because the search algorithms are always changing and refining, it could be useful to consult an expert or even dedicate a bit more time to learning about the topic. Ultimately, a few website tweaks and more time spent on consistent valuable content could make a significant difference in the traffic to your site over a longer period of time. 

-Jenna