Although cannabis regulatory changes are constantly occurring in the United States and other countries around the world, the cannabis industry in general still faces many challenges and restrictions.

For example, today’s top social media and search platforms, Facebook and Google have strict policies for advertisers of cannabis and hemp-related products, making it hard for business owners to develop a robust online presence. Additionally, hosting solutions and credit card payment processing providers are also making lives very difficult for cannabis entrepreneurs.

To overcome these difficulties, cannabis brands need to focus on the development of high-quality websites that drive organic traffic and are optimized to generate online sales. As long as social media platforms maintain strict and sometimes unclear restrictions, the growth of cannabis businesses will depend on their ability to gain a strong position through Google search results and attract organic traffic.

The following tips can be helpful for any cannabis brand owner who wants to develop an effective SEO strategy.

USE ONLY RELIABLE HOSTING FOR YOUR WEBSITE

While it might be tempting to choose the cheapest website hosting providers to build your brand ́s website, it is crucial to read the fine print and ensure that they do not have any restrictions related to the promotion of cannabis products. 

Like social media platforms, some website hosting providers also place restrictions on the content that can be published. Choosing the right host is the first step to avoid any future problems. 

BUILD A KEYWORD PLAN

Based on the type of cannabis products you’re intending to sell, start by choosing some of the words that your potential customers might use on search engines to find your product or service. 

Once you have your list, use an online keyword explorer to calculate their average difficulty and rank them accordingly.

From this ranking, you need to select the keywords that have a medium or low difficulty but are still highly relevant for your business. These words and phrases will be the base of your SEO strategy, so it is essential to choose them carefully. One of our favorite ‘go-to’ tools to gauge keyword competitiveness is KWFinder.com

Another keyword search tool you should definitely use is Answer the Public which finds questions, prepositions, comparisons, alphabetical, and related searches.

DEFINE YOUR CONTENT STRATEGY

The next in building your list of keywords is creating high-quality content. Whether you will write the articles or hire a professional writer for the task, it is crucial to insert your target keywords in the most natural way possible. 

While there are different opinions on the subject, successful cannabis websites usually post one or two pieces of content each week, each of them containing no more than two target keywords.

Building up search rank can take time. That being said, if you do things right, you can also rank very high for specific keywords in a relatively short time frame, Having a list of highly relevant target keywords and publishing high-quality content from the beginning are the most crucial steps. Make sure you know exactly what keywords you want your business to rank highest for.

As a cannabis content and PR agency, we have a skilled cannabis content writing team that can help you craft and manage your cannabis content writing tactics.

USE THE RIGHT HEADINGS AND STYLES

Reading an article that has no titles and is written with a single font and size is not a pleasant experience for anyone. SEO parameters take these factors into consideration, and therefore it is vital to take advantage of the different heading styles to divide your articles and separate information into relevant categories.

These styles are commonly referred to as “H1, H2 and “H3”, with the first being the main title and the last being the lower subcategory. Other essential factors to consider is keeping a relatively constant word count and supporting your arguments with evidence and external links when necessary.

Finally, the use of visual elements, such as charts and pictures is essential for creating high-quality content. The presence of these elements is also evaluated by the SEO algorithms that ultimately determine your website ́s position in a given search engine.

DO NOT WRITE ONLY ABOUT YOUR BRAND

Apart from promoting your products and explaining their benefits, the main goal of any SEO strategy is to position your brand as a key player with deep knowledge and a strong understanding of the industry. It is therefore essential to create articles that provide your readers with more information on the general characteristics of cannabis, recommendations for their usage and any news that are relevant to the industry.

When it comes to quality content creation, make sure to address relevant topics and provide unique information whenever possible. While there are large amounts of information already available, the cannabis business is continuously changing, and it pays off to become a trusted source of information for both current and potential consumers.

We’ve personally worked with cannabis businesses and that had previously hired a so-called  “cannabis marketing expert” to perform their search engine optimization. Some of the websites didn’t understand the importance of content, have enough content (sub-400 words per page), or even relevant content, Don’t fall into that category. Need to develop an effective SEO strategy for your company? We’d love to help.

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