How search engine optimisation can help gun dealers sell more stock

by | Apr 30, 2019

Here at Spidersnet Firearms we aim to do all we can to ensure that our customers, gun dealers like you, are up-to-speed with digital marketing practices. We want to make sure that you’re fully equipped to make informed decisions when it comes to helping your business perform better online. Today’s guide offers you an introduction to Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

Your customers can find your website in many ways. They could head straight to your site, they could discover you through social media, or they could find out your site’s address on adverts you might have placed around the web. However, one of the most common ways for people to discover websites is through search engines such as google. The people that come to your site through Google and other search engines are referred to as your ‘organic traffic’. Which is where the practice of SEO pops up…

SEO, or Search Engine Optimisation, is the actions taken to allow your website to appear high up on search engine results pages. Competition for these upper spots is often very fierce, so achieving a high ranking can be difficult. It’s for this reason that SEO is so very important to most businesses, like yours, that have a presence online. If you want to sell your stock via the web, and want your business to be found by people using Google, then you need to be confident that you’re following the right steps.

All of the websites built by Spidersnet Firearms are done so with SEO in mind. We are always thinking about SEO when designing and creating your sites, so technically they are designed to rank well on search results pages. However, this is not the be-all-and-end-all. There are further actions that can be taken to give your site an even better chance of ranking highly. We’ll cover those later on in this piece. But for now…

WHY IS IT SO IMPORTANT TO RANK HIGH ON SEARCH RESULTS PAGES?

1 – Because millions of people are using search engines every day!

It’s a fact. Google is the most visited website in the world. It’s where everyone goes to find out information about anything. If someone wants to know where they can find the right gun for their needs, in their area, they’re likely to head to Google.

If your potential customers, in your catchment area, are on the hunt for firearms and they don’t find your business in their Google searches, then you may well be missing out on a number of sales!

2 – People hardly ever click beyond the first page of results

Recent research has shown that three quarters of web users never scroll beyond the first page of search engine results. So once again, if your website is ranking on the second page of results for search terms relating to your business, a big percentage (75% to be exact) of potential customers aren’t seeing your stock. And that’s not even taking into account those businesses that can’t even rank on page two!

Websites situated on the third, fourth, or fifth pages of results receive even fewer visits. Basically, the further from page one you are, the worse your prospects are. This shows how important ranking highly for relevant search terms is to selling guns online.

3 – Over 50% of web traffic comes from search engines

BrightEdge are experts in SEO. They carried out research which highlighted just how important a good ranking is to your business. It revealed that over 51% of all website traffic is driven through search engines. This outlines just how much potential traffic can be lost through a poor ranking.

The research highlighted that 10% of site traffic comes from paid search, 5% from social media, and 34% is driven by a variety of other sources.

WHAT FACTORS CAN IMPROVE A SITE’S CHANCES OF APPEARING HIGH UP IN SEARCH RESULTS PAGES?

1 – Quality copy!

Google’s own Starter Guide to SEO says: “Creating compelling and useful content will likely influence your website more than any of the other factors.” This goes to show just how much stock the world’s most important search engine puts in top quality web copy and content. It’s therefore important that every page of your website has good, informative copy.

Any landing pages that are bare and have very little content, or contain copy that is uninformative, will have a negative impact on your website’s ability to rank well.

We’ve noticed that gun dealer websites often have minimal written copy on landing pages, giving their website a poor chance of driving traffic from search engines.

Once you’ve ensured that all of your landing pages have detailed, informative copy, you can then work to create other content to boost your ranking such as useful guides for your users, industry news, and other blog posts.

2 – Technical SEO factors

There are a number of technical aspects of SEO that need to be considered. Though a lot of these will be confusing to the average person. They include optimising of the following things:

  • Meta titles
  • Meta descriptions
  • File names/Alt data
  • Anchor text
  • Site speed
  • Internal linking
  • URL structures

A lot of web design companies, including our team here at Spidersnet Firearms, build websites taking all of the above into account. However, there are always improvements that can be made to these, and other aspects, by yourself or a hired SEO professional.

3 – User-experience is key!

It didn’t used to be the case, but Google now takes the experience you provide for users on your site, very seriously. Good user experience means that your website easily presents your users with the information or guns that they’re after in a seamless, stress-free experience. Plenty of useful information being neatly displayed, and an easy to navigate site, all contribute to offering top quality user experience. If a user is left scrolling for a long time, unable to find the page they’re after, then this is going to have a negative impact on their experience.

4 – Mobile-friendly website design

As we’ve previously outlined, user experience is vital to Google. And, with so many people browsing the internet on smartphones, it is very important that they’re taken into consideration.

Google is now looking at the mobile version of your website before it takes your desktop version into account. So if your site is difficult to browse, and looks poor on a mobile or tablet device, then this will have a negative impact on your chances of ranking high in search results.

5 – Links

Internal links – links from one part of your site to another – are very important as they allow users to seamlessly make their way around your website, thus improving user experience. However, Google and other search engines also place a lot of importance on external links.

This means that if another website links to your site, more often than not, it will increase your site’s chances of a positive ranking. Links from other websites strengthen the reputation of your site in the eyes of Google. Link-building is a proven tactic, which is why a lot of people who work in SEO spend a fair amount of time attempting to get other sites to link to their own to boost its ranking.

6 – Consistent citations online

Mentions of your business, address and phone number together online are known as citations. Citations often appear on online listings pages, reviews portals, articles and blog posts. Search engines like Google use these various mentions to build up a profile of your business.

Google uses this profile to ensure that your business is returned in the results for relevant search queries and always associates a business with one main physical location. This is how they provide relevant results in local searches. So it’s important, in order to not confuse Google, that all of the citations and mentions of your business online are consistent meaning they all use the same business name, address, and phone number.

WHAT FACTORS CAN IMPROVE A SITE’S CHANCES OF APPEARING HIGH UP IN SEARCH RESULTS PAGES?

As a Spidersnet Firearms customer your site is already mobile friendly, and has a lot of technical specifications in place to help it appear high up on search results pages. However, there are still some moves that can be made to improve its chances of ranking well, and boosting your chances of selling firearms online. These include:

  • Improve your copy and content
  • Set up internal links
  • Build links to your website from other relevant sites around the web
  • Make sure the right information is in the right place
  • Increase and improve your citations online
  • Invest in additional monthly SEO from Spidersnet Firearms and let us take care of it for you!

If you would like to know more about our services, provide us with your details below and we will give you a call!