Search engine optimization (SEO) is a daunting and confusing science to anyone but an SEO expert. But as an online dispensary, a strong SEO strategy is an indispensable requirement. You need a smart dispensary SEO plan to get your mail-order marijuana brand to the top of Google’s search results.
With Google’s algorithm thousands on thousands of lines long and largely secret, what’s the smartest tactic for cannabis SEO in Canada? Working with a cannabis-friendly digital marketing company is just the start.
If you are brand new to the big wide world of SEO, here are a few key SEO tips to start with.
1.Cannabis Keyword Research
Keyword research is the oldest method for establishing your dispensary SEO. It’s all about figuring out what your customers are searching for.
How can you use these specific words and questions to capture your audience’s interest?
Remember keywords, phrases, and questions should always have a connection to your brand, products and/or services. There are several free online tools, like Moz and Answer the Public, which can help you narrow down your search for target keywords. These are restricted, but get for beginners.
There are likely thousands, if not tens of thousands, of different combinations you could target. The options are endless. This is why working with a professional SEO strategist is critical.
Using SEO software, years of experience, an SEO expert looks at searcher intent, keyword difficulty, clicks per search, and so much more. Once you’ve got a list in hand of what words and phrases to target, you can use it to craft content that answers these questions.
2.Write for Readers
Internet readers are a bit different than the kind of person that picks up a novel or newspaper. Internet readers enjoy easy-to-read, highly scrollable content. That means short sentences, short paragraphs, and multimedia in easy-to-digest sections.
Large text blocks scare people off. Try to incorporate page breaks, bullet points, and other media to help readers find the answer to their question (or the best product) as quickly as possible.
You’ll also want to research what kind of content people are looking for. This is also known as searcher intent.
Some keyword targets, like “Wax versus shatter,” are clearly informational. A searcher wants to know the differences between these two products.
But other inquiries may be shoppers (“Best sativas in Canada”) or navigational in nature (“dispensary near me”). Pick a keyword, do some research on searcher intent, then write for that intent.
3.Earn those Backlinks
Keywords are only half the story when it comes to cannabis SEO in Canada. The second half is building a backlinking strategy.
Google and other search algorithms give brownie points to credible websites, with a history of providing trustworthy results to internet searchers. The more people reference a website, the higher it ranks.
For example, newspapers rank a lot higher than personal blogs. One of the ways Google sorts this out is the number of people backlinking to a specific domain.
How can you convince people to backlink to your website? It’s a time-consuming process to earn backlinks from other brands, customers, and social shares. But when it starts to pay off, it does so in a big way.
A solid backlink portfolio can help you dispensary SEO and get you on the first page of Google. Ask your digital marketing company about creating a long-term backlinking strategy to complement other aspects of your digital marketing plan.
Content is a Long Term Plan, But it Pays Off
You aren’t the only cannabis brand fighting for the first page of Google and beyond. Working with a digital marketing agency, who understands the algorithm’s nuances is one of the few ways to beat the competition.
Remember, a content strategy takes time to see results. A blog post doesn’t change the world overnight, but a blog every week for six months will demonstrate tangible results. A content component is one aspect of a larger design plan for your cannabis website.