Creating SEO campaigns for small businesses can be tricky considering locality as well as competition of keywords. Many small businesses look to an SEO to be rain makers or miracle workers in establishing online and foot traffic. So how does an SEO really manage expectations of small businesses and provide results for these opportunities?

Initial Strategy Development
Meet face to face and with your research in hand related to competitors (online – related to targeted keyword). That analysis should discuss authority of those competitors and what is needed to surpass those metrics as well as a timeline. There is nothing worse then setting false expectations and needing to explain later to a client why you are behind on ROI. Outline tasks to be completed weekly as well as benchmarks and run rate reporting.

Geo Opportunities
Discuss and develop plans that meet local search for organic SEO, Social Media and Paid Search. If the goal is to get users to the site immediately then focus that budget toward PPC with geographic settings. If the focus is to get foot traffic into brick and mortar then focus that spend on Social Media engagement. All the while accompanied by an organic campaign for long term increases in rankings.

Little Successes Add Up
Be certain to communicate daily with small business owners regarding SEO, PPC, SMO wins that happen. At the end of the month if your reporting is as favorable as the owner may like you can discuss these little wins throughout the month. Cumulatively, the small business campaign is one that requires direct communication and clear/focused understandings of what they may consider a successful campaign. Remember, small business means the budget they spend is a large investment for them – so be certain to spend time and money wisely.