In that post, we discussed the importance of your website in your pawn shop marketing strategy. As part of this, we briefly touched upon pawn shop website SEO, but now we are going to dig a little deeper. This is the first post in a 2-part series of SEO tips.
If you’re unfamiliar with SEO, it stands for Search Engine Optimization. Basically, search engine optimization is just a fancy phrase for “fix your site so people can better find it in Google (or Bing).”
So, in this post we’re going to give you some pawn shop website SEO tips that go more in-depth than our previous post.
Whether you set out to optimize your site by yourself or you send this post to the person who helps you with your website, remember the ultimate goal here if this starts to seem overwhelming. Optimized websites pay off with increased foot traffic and more steady business for you in the long run.
We promise you won’t regret putting time into this project.
We are going to start by breaking down some of the key factors in SEO that are important for helping your website rank closer to the top of search results. These are page titles, descriptions and headers.
These are all crawled by Google and other search engines, so that they can get a better understanding of what your website is about. If your site is not well-optimized to give a search engine the best sense of what it’s about, the customers you want to reach likely won’t see your website in search results for their search query.
Every page on your website gets its own space in Google (and Bing, etc.) – if it is optimized. Please note this is different from your “Google Places” listing.
These page listings contain two elements that work together beautifully, almost like a free “advertisement,” if you will. These two elements in your page listing in the search engine results are the Page Title and the Page Description.
We will go into Page Descriptions later, but first let’s drill down into Page Titles.
Where a Page’s Title is displayed:
How Page Titles are Denoted in Your Website’s Code:
<title>Here is the Title of the Applicable Page</title>
Page descriptions (often referred to as meta descriptions) can be thought of as little snippet of text that describes what that page is about. This is not to be confused with the written copy that actually appears on the webpage!
Where a Page’s Description is displayed:
How Page Descriptions are Denoted in Your Website’s Code:
<meta name=”description” content=”Here is a description of the applicable page”> </head>
Page copy is the written text that makes up your web page. This is what you would expect the customer to read on your web page to gather information about your pawn shop.
Where a Page’s Copy is displayed:
Page headings appear on the webpage with your page copy, and they precede body text. They are used by search engines (and your website visitors) to distinguish hierarchy of your content and readability.
Where a Page’s Headings are displayed:
There are various types of headings, and they are marked with tags in your code as <h1>, <h2>, <h3> and so on.
H1 can be thought of as the main topic, while h2 breaks that down into subsections, and then h3 breaks down those h2 subsections even further. We display an example of this hierarchy below.
How Headings Appear to the Website Visitor:
How Headings are Denoted in Your Website’s Code:
<h1>How to Clean a Watch: Watch-Cleaning 101</h1>
[Body text here]
<h2>How to Clean a Watch with Jewelry Cleaner</h2>
[Body text or no body text here]
<h3>Dip the Watch in Jewelry Cleaner</h3>
[Body text here]
<h3>Let the Watch Sit</h3>
[Body text here]
<h3>Wipe the Watch</h3>
[Body text here]
The main point to keep in mind is that optimization of these website elements includes one common thing: relevant keyword phrases.
Your relevant keyword phrase would be a phrase that a potential customer would type into search engines. For instance, if your pawn shop is known for being one of the few that takes silver in, let’s say, Amarillo, you should dedicate a page on your site that talks about that.
Having the phrase “pawn shop that takes in silver Amarillo, TX”—and variations of that—in the elements of that page that the search engine crawls is important. The better optimized your page is for that, the better the chance that search engines will show it to that searcher.
Now that you understand what page titles, page descriptions, headers and copy are, why search engines care and where they appear online, we can delve into optimization guidelines. You will need to access the backend of your website to fix these.
Example: Pawn Shop that Takes Silver – Amarillo TX | Joe’s Pawn
Example: Looking for a pawn shop that takes silver in Amarillo, Texas? Joe’s Pawn will take silver jewelry, bullion, coins and antique silver. Learn more!
See Example in “Page Headings” Below.
Continue Reading: Pawn Shop Website SEO Tips: Part 2
David Stiebel is one of the cofounders of PawnGuru. David was educated at MIT, where he studied Math. He subsequently worked at Bain as a data scientist before starting PawnGuru in 2015. He started PawnGuru to build a better tool for pawn shops and consumers to connect.More Articles