Mastering SEO: Basics For Your MSP Website

October 12th, 2017
Liz Hoscheid
Liz HoscheidSr. Digital Marketing Manager

As a managed service provider, you need to use several strategies to help potential clients find you and get a message across to explain why they need your services. A search engine optimization campaign is paramount to achieving online visibility.

The good news is that SEO is easier than you might think. The bad news is that you will probably have to make some changes to your website.

Understanding SEO

Have you ever wondered how Google retrieves millions of results in seconds and shows you the most relevant pages first? Google has indexed more than 30 trillion web pages and uses algorithms to select the most relevant pages for your query – whether you wanted to visit a specific website, needed an answer to a question or looked up a broad topic.

SEO refers to a number of techniques webmasters use to increase the chances of ranking higher in search results. These techniques include telling Google what their content is about, generating signals for this content and delivering good user experiences.

[More digital marketing tips here]

Why You Need SEO

A solid SEO strategy will make your website discoverable, bring more targeted traffic and should result in more sales. For 20 percent of small businesses, SEO is the most efficient way to attract new customers.

Besides, you need SEO to stay competitive since other MSPs are currently using these techniques to rank higher. Visibility is crucial since only 21 percent of searches result in a user visiting more than one website and the top result gets 34.36 percent of visits on desktop and 31.35 percent of visits on mobile.

keyword search

What Your Audience is Seeking

You cannot start designing your SEO campaign until you have a better idea of the searches you need to target. Google’s AdWords Keyword Planner tool is a terrific place to start since this tool allows you to keep up with search trends and assess what keywords or key phrases are popular in your niche.

Short keywords describing your services are important. However, keep in mind that 50 percent of searches contain more than four words. Many Internet users are likely to look up questions related to issues and concerns that indicate they could use an MSP even if they are not aware these services exist.

The Kind of Content Your Audience Wants

Top tech website tips often include developing content that establishes your company as a recognized expert in your field. Keyword research will help you determine what questions your target audience needs help answering.

Additional topics worth exploring include explaining why a business benefits from working with an MSP, explaining what you do, talking about pertinent issues and featuring news stories relevant to the services you offer. Follow these simple tips when developing content:

  • Address topics that drive traffic to your site in an accessible manner
  • Focus on developing content that drives conversion by talking about specific benefits
  • Use text rather than images and videos and avoid placing images or videos on pages with little text
  • Develop content-sharing strategy, such as using Twitter or an existing network on LinkedIn to generate signals and establish yourself as a tech expert

drive traffic to your site

Optimize Your MSP Website

There are a few things you can do to help Google and other search engines determine what your content is about:

  • Use strong keywords in your URLs
  • Create descriptive page titles and structure your content with subheads rich in keywords
  • Make sure your pages load quickly and that navigation is easy, even on a mobile device
  • Internal links can boost signals for your other pages
  • Fix your broken links and create a custom 404 error page with navigation links

Familiarize yourself with the Fetch feature in the Google Webmaster Tools. This tool allows you to render your website via a virtual browser, look for errors and send a request to get your website indexed.

Boost Traffic Signals With Off-page SEO

As an MSP, you need to work on developing an online presence that establishes you as a tech expert. Google uses a complex algorithm to determine the expertise level and popularity of a website, and getting your links featured on random websites won’t help you.

You should instead look to create external links that provide a real value, for instance by generating targeted traffic or by associating your MSP website with the online presence of an influencer in your niche.

Start by performing an SEO audit for your website to assess where you are and establish some priorities. Focus on improving user experience, creating an internal structure that makes sense, optimizing existing content and developing more content to grow your online presence. Remember that even though there is a technical aspect to SEO, you will get better results if you prioritize delivering a good user experience and developing high-quality content.

Wanting to grow your MSP business? Contact us today.