Buying products and services online is a common practice today, thanks to the rapid increase in internet speeds and accessibility. In fact, according to the World Trade Organization, over 1.6 billion people worldwide bought products and services online in 2016 alone. And they project that more than 2.4 billion people will buy online in 2021.

What does that mean? If you are a business owner looking to remain competitive now and, in the future, you must have an online extension of your brick-and-mortar store. Specifically, you must have a business website. And that’s not enough. Your business website must rank high on search engines for potential customers to find you.

One of the best ways to rank high on search engines is to implement a strategy called SEO (search engine optimization). SEO helps your website to appear at the top of search results when potential customers search products and services with your keywords.

Devising SEO tactics

Here are the most effective SEO tactics to help your website rank high on search engines today:

1. Optimize your business website for mobile

Over 60% of consumers use their mobile devices to search and buy products and services online. This growth is attributed to the explosion of mobile devices and rapid internet penetration. A website that is not optimized for mobile will display a mini version of your desktop website. That means your website visitors will be forced to scroll horizontally and vertically to find what they want.

Today’s consumers don’t want to go through that trouble, so they’ll simply leave and head to the competition. A mobile-friendly website should have a responsive page display, proper text formatting, readable fonts, and optimized image display to rank high on search engines.

2. Optimize your web page speeds

Internet speeds have dramatically increased and so consumers expect your website performance to match those increases. A study by Adobe found out that about 40% of visitors will bounce off your website if your web pages load slowly. However, there are steps you can text to optimize your web page speeds.

Find a good web hosting company: A reputable web hosting company will ensure your website is fast all the time. They will also ensure that your website doesn’t experience any downtime.

Optimize your website images: While images enhance your website’s engagement, they can slow down your website. So, make sure all your images are optimized for speed. For example, minimize the image sizes without affecting their quality. You can use tools like ImageOptim, Kraken, and JPEGmini to do that.

Use website caching: Website caching involves storing browsers of people who have visited your website so that when they visit again, the load time reduces significantly. That means they can access your web pages quicker than the previous time.

3. Create quality content

This is the most effective SEO tactic today. In fact, it’s the number one Google ranking factor. Google prioritizes user experience when ranking websites. Google loves content that helps users solve their everyday problems. If visitors stay long enough on your website, Google will know that your website has quality content that offers value to users. Also, ensure that you optimize your content by including keywords that consumer search for when looking to buy products and services online. So, find an SEO agency that understands your business and take your company to the next level.

Whitehat SEO tactics

The good thing about SEO is that it attracts organic (not paid) traffic to your business website. Organic visitors land on your website using search engines and they are more likely to buy than paid visitors. So, to succeed as an online merchant, SEO should be a major component of your digital marketing strategies.