Business owners are always looking for new ways to strengthen their online presence and name recognition. Having a website is important, but unless it can be found on the Internet, the website won’t do business owners any good. Therefore, your website needs to be found in search engines when people type in a keyword.

Ensuring that you are using the right keywords for your industry and making them strong will go a long way toward helping your business website be found on the Internet. Besides using the right keywords, you also have to be competitive with your keywords.

There are certain keywords that companies in your industry want to use regularly. For example, McDonald’s wants to be the first one in Google’s list when people type in “fast food restaurant.” This is a competitive keyword because Burger King and Sonic also use that keyword. Here are some tips to get top rankings using competitive keywords.

1. Prepare

Long before you launch your website, you should be talking about it. You should mention it during networking events, industry trade shows, and other business-related places. However, don’t wait too long to launch it after you have mentioned it.

2. Create a Website

To get top rankings, you need a strong website. You want one that accrues authority links and has been visible for a while. You also want your website to use the best available practices in search engine optimization. A good SEO expert can help you figure out how to create your website using best practices.

3. Rely on Networks

When you create your website, you should already have networks you can use. For example, you should have social media and e-mail contacts and people you have met in person. You need to begin link-building through these networks. Filling out social media profiles will help you with link-building.

4. Find Your Keywords

Do your keyword research. You want keywords that have a good volume but are not too high. Pick the ones that are popular. For example, if you offer weight-loss products, you might want to use “how to lose weight fast” as your keywords. Think like your customer and potential customer. What would you type if you were searching for your product? That would be your popular keyword to start. Those with the highest volume are too competitive and won’t work.

5. Fit Keywords to Business Model

Your keywords have to be relevant to your business and website. That’s why you don’t want to put “pool sales” if you are a business consultant. However, if you are a sales representative for a pool company, then, you could use “pool sales.” People are more likely to click on your site and want to buy from you with the correct keywords. Rankings are good, but they are meant to get people to visit your website and buy from you.

6. Visit Competitors’ Pages

Just knowing keywords isn’t going to help you. Business owners must look at what competitors are doing. Look at what names they use for their URLs, their title tags, content that is ranking, businesses that are ranking and the authority of the sites.

You want to ask whether the domains are an exact match to the keyword, whether title tags use the keyword, and whether blogs or videos are ranking. You need to do the same as your competitors to be even with them, but if you want to beat them, you have to do more. Find ways to differentiate your site from theirs.

7. Consider Thought Processes

You want to think about the intent of the searcher. The more specific the keywords you use, the easier it will be for you to determine what your searcher and the potential customer is thinking.

The intent is the most educated guess as to what the searcher really wants and whether your product or service will solve that problem. For example, someone looking for a digital marketing service in Los Angeles might type “Los Angeles Digital Marketing Agency.” That is a specific search term, but it tells you exactly what the person wants.

7. Create Content

Now that you know the keywords and have finalized the other steps, you are ready to create content. You want a mixture of pictures, video, written content, and social media posts.

You also have to decide if you are doing it in-house or if you are hiring content creators to help you. Content creators include writers, photographers, videographers, graphic designers and SEO experts.

When you follow these eight steps, you should rank on competitive words. Once you get good rankings, you will be able to find potential customers who will click on your website and possibly buy from you. However, these eight steps are not a one-time and you’re done.

Content must be refreshed regularly or your ranking will drop. You also have to have the calls to action on your website if you expect people to buy from you. And, you have to ensure your potential customers will like you and trust you.