What is SEO?
SEO stands for search engine optimization. This is the process of making adjustments to the pages on your website to rank higher in the organic search engine results. This is a great way to bring in more traffic to your website without having to pay for it.
Benefits of SEO
Here are some of the biggest benefits of SEO:
Free traffic to your website
Most marketing efforts require some sort of payment. With Google ads you are paying for every visitor that lands on your website. This can add up and get expensive fast. With Facebook ads, you are often paying for how many people your ad gets put in front of. SEO just takes some work up front along with patience to receive that free traffic.
The nice thing about SEO is that you will never receive low quality traffic. People are searching for exactly what you have and will find you in the search results.
Increases trust and authority
When you have a strong SEO strategy in place, users can find your website in the search results when they search many different topics in your industry. When you show up when they search those topics, you become a trusted brand in their eyes. You become the authority brand in the industry when you have a strong SEO strategy.
Brings in more leads
When you bring in high quality traffic to your website, it is inevitably going to bring in more leads for your business. This is where the power of SEO comes into play. If you put in the work, you can bring in a large amount of high-quality traffic that will turn into leads for your business.
How YOU can benefit from SEO
You don’t have to be an expert to benefit from SEO. It helps to have experience ranking websites in the past, but you can benefit from SEO if you are willing to put in the work. SEO works differently depending on the industry, so it is important to look into industry specific SEO strategies.
Learning the basics, knowing how to decide what keywords you want to rank for, and producing high quality content can give you a great foundation when attempting to implement an SEO strategy yourself.
Best SEO practices
SEO cannot be fully explained in one article, but I am going to do my best to give you the basics and the most important strategies to utilize when implementing SEO. Following these steps will guide you in the right direction when trying to rank your pages higher in the search results.
Before even putting a blog post or page together, the first thing you need to do is perform keyword research. This is very important, because there’s no point in ranking for a keyword that doesn’t get searched. Adversely, trying to rank for a keyword that many other people are trying to rank for can be wasting your efforts.
The two main things to look for in your keyword research are search volume and level of competition, or keyword difficulty. These metrics are important to look at to be sure you give yourself the best chance to succeed. Using Google’s Keyword Planner is a great place to start to see this information. If you type in your keyword ideas, this tool will tell you the estimated search volume and competition for the keyword.
After you have determined some keywords that have a high search volume and low competition, it is a good idea to search that keyword in Google. When you do this, you should look at the top ten results. The reason you do this is to see which websites are ranking in the top ten. If you recognize all these websites as being bigger brands, there is a good chance you will not outrank them. If the first page is filled with websites you have not heard of, there is a better chance you can rank for the keyword. I use this method to validate the level of competition the keyword planner gives me.
After having some keywords picked out, you can start writing your content. This part is obviously very important because Google will only reward high quality content with good rankings. The days of stuffing your content with keywords and having it rank within a few weeks are over.
The primary goal when writing content needs to be to provide users with the best experience possible. Having a clean web design is important in providing a good user experience. Consider these design features when setting up your website.
It’s easy to make the mistake of writing your content for Google instead of the users, but you need to try to avoid this. The best way to do this is to look at the content that is ranking well. Use that content as a steppingstone for your own content. That content is ranking well for a reason, so create something similar, but better.
The next thing to take into consideration is search intent. Think about the keyword you are targeting and determine what people who search that keyword are actually looking for. Determine if they are looking for in depth information on a topic, or just to have a question answered. This should change the way you write your content.
Once your content is written, the next thing you need to do is optimize the content so that it can perform well in the search results. If you wrote your content correctly, this should have mostly been completed during the writing process.
The key thing is to look for here are that you are correctly using your keywords in the content. As I mentioned early, be absolutely certain you are not keyword stuffing. All it takes to rank in terms of keyword usage is to use your keywords only a few times in the content and headings. Google has gotten very good at telling if you are writing content with the intention of ranking high, and they won’t do you many favors.
After your content is published, the next thing you need to do is to promote this content. Unfortunately, putting together high-quality content with exceptional on-page optimization normally isn’t enough to rank high in the search results.
You can promote your content in a few different ways. I would highly recommend using social media to promote your content, but even more important is getting backlinks to your page. Backlinks are when other websites point a link to your page from their website. This is one of the biggest ranking factors, and it is crucial if you want to rank high.
There is no easy way to get backlinks from other websites. The best thing you can do is to create high quality content, promote it on social media, and hope people like it enough to link to it. You can also ask other website owners to include a link to your page. This doesn’t work too often, but if you reach out to a lot of website owners, it is possible to get a handful of backlinks this way.
Efficiency and Consistency
The most important part about implementing an SEO strategy is being efficient and consistent. SEO can be a difficult thing to implement by yourself, especially when you are trying to run a business in the meantime.
I would recommend creating a workflow or process with Trello. Trello can help you keep track of what you are working on and keep you on task. It is a great way to be sure that you are consistent and efficient in your SEO efforts. Trello is completely free to use, unless you are trying to use add-ons which are not usually necessary. Here is an article with more information about Trello.
There are many benefits to having a strong SEO strategy in place. You can increase your traffic and bring in leads to your business without having to spend money on advertising yourself. SEO is something that you can do yourself, it is just going to take dedication and hard work to be successful in your SEO efforts.
Target keywords with a higher search volume and low competition to get the best results. When writing your content, be sure to always focus on the user experience. Focus on writing high quality content, promoting that content, and being consistent with your strategy.