SEO For Salons 2018 – 3 Highly Actionable Steps
Whether you own a barbershop, salon, or rent a chair, SEO can help grow your business.
SEO or Search Engine optimization, is creating content & building a reputation that compels Google to serve you up as an answer to a search query.
When people google : “Top Rated Salon in Minneapolis” “Barbershops in Brooklyn”
Then Google wants to know that you’re trustworthy, and that you’re a relevant business.
So – I want to give you three actionable steps you can do to help make Google, and the web, your best employee.
The Three Major Goals of these Salon and Barbershop SEO Strategies:
- Drive the right kind of appointments your way
- Dominate your competitors for the most profitable clients
- Conveying your brand, reputation and trustworthiness over the web
Tip #1 – Start with the Google My Business Page
Google Gave Small Business a Way to Win with a Google My Business Page
Google gave small businesses a way to register with them, build up reviews, and drive traffic in their local regions even if they can’t compete with the domain authority of giant corporations.
Google My business really is a miracle, and it’s the best free marketing tool for small businesses – Barbershop & Salons Rejoice!
When someone uses Google to find a hair stylist, barber, beautician, or colorist, Google really wants to connect them to a trustworthy business
But how does Google know that a Salon is trustworthy, and not a fly-by-night sham?
You’ll need to prove it to them.
Improve SEO for Barbershops and Salons with Google My Business Page Reviews and Optimization
The #1 Advice we have for salon search engine optimization is to optimize and mature their “GMB” or Google My Business Page.
How do you Optimize your Google My Business Page?
Three Optimization Tips for Google My Business Pages:
- Put your primary category or keyword in your business name (HUGE!)
- Choose no more than 2 categories
- Create a compelling description & link to your website
- Be VERY intentional about accuracy in your “Name, Address, and Phone Numbers” or NAP
We’ve learned that women with hair coloring needs are a very high value client for beauty salons.
How do you attract hair coloring clients through search engine optimization? With basic keyword optimization.
How does Google know that you’re a beauty salon that has helped hundreds of people with their hair coloring needs? How does it know what regions people will drive from in order to seek out your services?
Think about that.
How does Google know what you do and who you serve?
You need to tell them with your web presence and Google My Business Page.Example:
“Hair Salon” v.s “Hair Colorist” search terms show different intent – and profitability.
We worked for a Minneapolis Chimney Repair company that had been doing work for nearly 15 years. We did our local SEO makeover and setup his new WordPress site. During our conversations, we discovered that while the company name and vocation was called “masonry,” the search engine results that would help him the most was for Chimney repair. We added “Chimney repair” to his website, H1 and H2 headers, put a service page talking about all the relevant chimney information, then over the last year he’s done more highly profitable chimney repairs than he’s ever done.
The point? People don’t search for masons, they search for chimney repair.
But how would Google know that it’s all about Chimneys, not just stone, brick and masonry?
Well you gotta tell them!Putting one or two core niche’s or keyword focuses after your name isn’t about spamming, it’s about sending signals to people and Google that you’re in the business of something.
So the first step to get your Google my business page optimized is to put the best keywords for salons in the Google My Business Page name, description, and then build out relevant and trustworthy service pages on your website.
Mature Your Google My Business Page
Google Reviews are a major factor for Local SEO.
Think about it, how do you know if a business usually does a good job, or a bad job?
A Google Review conveys trust from one customer to a prospect.
When a small business reaches out to their clients and gets authentic reviews, they can dominate with seo.
Both Google and People respond well to a large number of authentic, quality reviews.
If you want to invest into your marketing through search engine optimization – you should create an outreach plan and stick to it.
Read our article: How to Get Google Reviews for Your Small Business
When you’re the beautician, barber, hair stylist or salon with the highest number of Google Reviews – you’re reputation will inevitably head in the right direction.
#2 Write Quality & Engaging Website Content
Too often I head over to a salon and they’ve simply dumped image after image, totally neglecting their written content.
We get it, people don’t want to read and your site should be mainly high quality images……
But how does Google find out what you’re about? Images tell Google very little about the web page.
Google rewards quality content that’s relevant – which starts with actually writing something.
Make sure that your barbershop or salon website isn’t too thin on written content, you need some words on those pages!
Write sections of relevant, helpful and descriptive text, don’t miss opportunities to send Google the signals of what you’re all about.
A best practice would be to write at least 500 words of good, quality content for your basic home pages. In order to keep the focus on services, directions, and images – break it out into sections and space them out.
Your home page or landing page doesn’t need to have tons of text, but it should have the basics:
Basic Content Tips for Salon Pages that are hesitant to have text:
- Have one H1, and one H2 that are your name and primary keywords i.e. “FeedbackWRENCH Web Design & SEO Minneapolis St. Paul”
- Ensure your page title, meta descriptions, and meta title, all have the keywords you want to rank for – written in a coherent format
- Don’t overstuff keywords. Use the keywords periodically, don’t try to manipulate the results with unnaturally stuffing keywords.
- Have Keywords leading to landing pages for services, niche’s and keywords that matter – “Hair Coloring, Nails, and Facials” each service might have it’s own section on the service page or even it’s own page entirely.
- Optimize the image “alt tag” so that it includes salon keywords that matter for you
- Check on putting a local Schema markup tag into your site
- Get your sitemap created and submitted to Google Webmaster
#3 Grow Authority with Citations and Links
Up to this point, it’s all been pretty straight forward.
Google needs to known what you do, where you do it, and who you serve.
Create the relevant web presence and Google My Business Page….and that will help your salon a ton!
Now we need to grow your authority.
When reputable websites and companies point to your website with a hyperlink, Google considers it a small vote of confidence.
The more votes of confidence you have from reputable organizations on the web, the more authority Google will give your domain.
There are two parts here:
Citations & Backlinks.
Barbershop, Hair Salon & Beauty Citations:
The Yellowpage phone books are dead and gone – now we have listings & citations.
Just like being in the phone book, you need to put yourself in the internet’s version of the phone book.
You’ll want to register and claim your business listings or “citations” on the websites that act like a phone book for the internet.
HALT! PAY ATTENTION HERE!!!!! “NAP” CONSISTENCY!
If you’re going to do this – you need to ensure that every single listing you submit is identical to your Google My Business Page name. There are hundreds of millions of web pages, and you need to help the web clearly understand your place in it all.
Example of a Typical Bad NAP Citation Structure:
- Facebook – “FeedbackWRENCH Web Design & SEO”
- Google My Business – “Feedback wrench search engine optimization & website design”
- Bing …. BAH you get the point.
Take this serious and do some planning and homework to establish your precise naming scheme before doing any business listings or citations.
Make sure that every listing has IDENTICAL, and I MEAN IDENTICAL information. Figure out the exact name, address, phone number, email, and core naming scheme you want to use before you start.
- Google My Business
- Bing Local Page
- Apple Maps
- Amazon Alexa
I wont waste your time – just spend the $100 and get your citations in place at Moz or BrightLocal.Backlinks & Votes of Confidence
Alright – now you want votes of confidence from reputable and authoritative websites.
You might want to hire a firm like us, or you can start Googling “backlink outreach techniques” we’re writing a book about this as we speak.
There are a couple of backlinks that are like a mix of citation and backlinks:
Pillars of Local Backlinks:
- Better Business Bureau
- Chamber of Commerce
- Industry Associations
- Government Pages
- Local Newspapers
I’m not going to keep droning on about this, but you can find creative ways to build backlinks with your local newspapers through a press release, event sponsorship, or event organizing.
Find the Biggest Chamber of Commerce in your area, and become a member. Then build out your profile.
In 2017 and 2018 – Backlinks are basically the name of the game for SEO.
If you want to get your SEO humming, these are some things you can do right away.
I got introduced to the entrepreneurial spirit of salon hairstylists, nail salon artists, and other beauty service providers by giving tax advice with when I built my tax firm in Lakeville.
Some of the most professional and entrepreneurial people I know, are those in the salon industry.
But hairstylists and salons get cheated when they don’t have a great web presence.
You work too hard – don’t let your web presence lag.
Don’t Get Cheated by a Mediocre Web Presence
SEO is like growing a tree.
When is the best time to have planted a tree? 20 years ago.
When’s the second best time to plant a tree? Today.
SEO is like growing a tree, you need to do the right things over time to get results.
We can do it for you, or get everything setup for you to win.
Shoot me an email to start a conversation – Rob@feedbackWRENCH.com
Also published on Medium.