As a small business finding time to do your SEO internally is one of the biggest barriers you will come across, unfortunately to do it well you need to work at it, this means setting aside time each day, either that or outsourcing it.
SEO is partly about trial and error, once you have it setup rather than just leaving it you need to maintain it and as a lantern will go out if you don’t keep turning the wick your SEO rankings will drop and die out if you don’t keep adding fresh content to your site.
Content creation has always been the best way to achieve good rankings, there have been other flashes in the pan in the past but Google want to see you creating high quality unique content on a regular basis for your website and you can then slip in a few keywords carefully to make sure you rank for the right terms.
To research those keywords terms you may want to use an SEO company, if you do them yourself you should use professional software rather than simply Google’s keyword tool that over-simplifies choosing keywords; the level of competition plus the quality of competition (not considered by Google’s tool) is vital and you should choose your battles carefully.
If you want to rank well for competitive keywords you will need to build links and achieve the right pagerank, to ascertain what pagerank you will need for a top position you need to analyze the pageranks of the existing top ten on Google for the keyword in question.
Link building should also be content based, it may seem a waste of effort to create content on other people’s websites in order to get links but these are the kind of links Google respect and you can add in relevant terms to this content as well.
Don’t build links using spam comments and content and make each post or comment unique; also avoid submission services that will add your link to a seemingly incredible number of websites, many of which may actually get you penalized by Google.
Some of the best ways to get links in this manner are to find forums and blogs that accept comments and add useful comments that relate to the article and add value, these are the most likely to get approved and be accepted as genuine by Google, make sure of course these sites are ‘do follow’, meaning the links won’t be marked by the site to be ignored by Google.