Can you demystify the world of SEO for me?
I understand the basics of SEO; finding long tail keywords with low competition that give you a chance to rank your content. But what comes next? I have found several resources on SEO but the concept is still a mystery to me.
SEO of course means search engine optimization and one of the most useful pieces of advice I can offer is make sure your website is mobile-friendly on only a 4g network. The people who make mobile searches are on the go not sitting in an office with 40-50g network wifi access. Regardless of the great services and products you may offer if your website does not load fast and easy to read, with links that work when you tap your customers, and potential customers will leave. Google itself will penalise non mobile-friendly sites as it realises how frustrating it is for mobile searchers.
It even lets potential searchers know in listing whether site is user friendly
so if not some might not even try at all. The best ROI would be an integrated interactive mobile-friendly strategy.
The main objective would be to not only achieving 1st page Google ranking local organic search but more importantly staying there. I can guarantee this.
By integrating an interactive marketing and communication app that delivers
your messages to the right people in real time, with ability to respond directly to you within the app. This is a 6page mini mobile friendly website Linked to FBPAGE with fresh content dripfed daily will keep your customers and potential customers informed, interested, entertained, and engaged returning time and time again. Even reposting on your behalf, and increasing your exposure. This is Web 3.0 If you would like more details please feel free to contact me as I feel services I offer can be of ongoing benefit to you or even just so I can pass on useful tips wish you every success
That is such a great question and I can!!
Here's the best concept to understand - Google wants to be the best business - beat the competition. Just like us, right?
For Google to be the best, it must serve up the best answers to searches. So if you want to show up in search, you must BE the best answer.
Google is getting smarter and smarter by the hour. It's not about letting google know that you're the best answer any more. It will find out on its own.
SEO is about becoming the best answer to a query. So find that long-tail phrase that people are searching for. Figure out what those people are really wanting - research? products? information? action? printables? whatever it is - give it to them. In spades. In long-long-long (1000 word articles) articles absolutely chock full of information. It is better to write a small book on the topic in one post once a week than to post every day.
Make all your images relevant - include images and graphics and video and text that keeps that user engaged. Make sure that content is all accessible by using Alt and Title tags.
The longer the user is engaged - the more you're answering the user's question, the more obvious it is that you are the best result.
Then look at everyone else who has similar answers to similar queries. Go to those websites and guest post and find any way to collaborate - because their visitors are going to be interested in your answer if your answer is truly relevant. Get those sites to link to your site. You're providing their readers and them a service. It's not trickery - you really ARE the best answer.
The more important the websites are that link to you the more it speaks to the quality and authority of your answer. If the New York Times links to your answer, that's a big stinking deal. To visitors and to search engines. That MUST be a super relevant answer you just provided, right?
And post regularly. If you are the authority on a topic - let the world know. In reality you're not doing SEO, you're expanding your brand, your message and your company. You need your authority to get out there and you need to provide answers to the searchers. Make those answers quality. And make them interesting.
Create engagement on your posts. Create sharing and social sharing - get them to tell their friends about your great answers. Heck - get the local news papers to tell the locals about your great answers - see how SEO sort of lends itself to other forms of marketing too?
Lastly, use the keywords that you are really providing an answer for. For example, I may be a 'girl boss' but are people searching that? or are they searching 'glass ceilings' or 'female entrepreneur'?
Search engines are getting closer to understanding our slang, but for now - be frank and obvious that you are answering the question at hand - the exact question at hand. In fact you are providing the best answer to the question, as typed by the searcher. (see how often I was able to use "the question" in a normal way?)
I hope that helps - my main premise is to always focus on marketing as a whole and BEING the best result. If you are the best result and you work your butt off so others know you are, your SEO will skyrocket.
All the best,
What comes next would include refining your site to be geared more toward the keywords you've come up with during the keyword research process. It would be in your best interest to try and rank for local based terms (keyword + state, keyword + city, etc.), or variations of those keywords as they apply to your local area.
Today, SEO is more about 'on-site' SEO, where your site is written well for people, but structured for search engines. The work you put into creating content and getting it to be seen in social is what will help you get links pointing to your site.
Aside from this, it's a good practice to be listed on as many major local business sites (Google My Business, etc) and local business directories, to increase your chances of appearing in map results if you have a brick-and-mortar.
In short, you'll want your site to be associated with the right keyword(s) while continually including good content on it.
Three things come to mind -
#1 - When in doubt remember KISS. Keep It Simple, Stupid.
#2 - "..There's the right thing, the wrong thing, and the nothing. Right or wrong is better than the "nothing" (paraphrase I love from T Roosevelt)
#3 - It's a marathon not a sprint.
#3a - do what you can, with what you have, where you are (more Roosevelt)
For most smbs SEO is a result of good content in a good story. That story is kept fresh over time and over several different "books". I think too many brains think SEO is this algorithmic complexity that only consultants understand. Refer to #1. You want PEOPLE to find your "stuff" right? So keep people in mind when you take pictures and tell stories.
It's been my experience that most smb do not like creating content. Maybe it's the phrase? Somehow SEO gets in there and takes the place of content. SMB'ers seem to think that SEO is different from content and therefore they don't have to take pictures or write. Good content lovingly and richly crafted is at the heart of SEO. If you like what you do/make, pictures and stories should be the part of the day you look forward to.
I think cropping and resizing pictures in Photoshop is one of the more overlooked frustration in content creation. Refer to #1. It doesn't have to be Photoshop. Good pix can happen in MSFT Paint, at least the resizing. PSD is immensely helpful though.
Content mostly means taking decent pictures of relevant "stuff" and getting those pictures online where PEOPLE SEARCHING can find them. If you can wrap that picture with a few paragraphs of a blog entry even better. If you can add a CAPTION and a meaningful description that's good too.
People LOVE STORIES. Again most smb'ers seem to hate writing. If that's you, then you need to learn to love writing. Pictures and relevant readable words done over time are a great two step dance. So write about the things that I assume you love and are trying to sell. Use natural language in a normal style. Complete sentences and a spellchecker are nice too. Refer to #1. Use your enthusiasm and passion for your product to create interest in people that find your content and over the space of time and multiple return visits, become customers.
Finally, once you start your picture taking and storytelling - KEEP ON GOING. Refer to #3. One flurry one time six months ago will do nothing for you. Do something once a day and PLAN on putting in a solid month or so before you slow up. Spread it across 4-5 venues. Use your phone for picture taking, although I think real cameras are better. Make a list. Make a calendar. MAKE A HABIT. Refer to #3. It takes a while to fill the pipe, but SEO will leak out the far end eventually. If you stop filling the pipe, the SEO will stop dripping out the far end. Refer to #3.
Thinking SEO first is kind of like trying to cheat. imo the best SEO is the organic "outgrowth" of good pictures and good writing consistently and ENJOYABLY done over time.
Marketing is still something created for PEOPLE. SEO is a cold mechanical algorithm based on pictures for people.
"KISS over time and you'll be fine" is the phrase I think most smb'ers should keep in mind.
Take that first step. And then take another.......
Certainly! Here are a few resources to help with this one...
This is a pretty open-ended question! I recommend you read something like Moz's beginners guide to SEO here - https://moz.com/beginners-guide-to-seo
Essentially with SEO you are affecting the key indicators that Google looks at when deciding how high to rank your website for target key phrases. You are optimising
For me the key SEO areas fall in these 4 main categoties:
1) Onsite SEO - onsite content, ALT tags, Titles, meta-descriptions and more.
2) Offsite SEO - links from relevant target sites related to your website.
3) Social Media - this is offsite but also requires seperate management and is a channel in its own right. Ideally you need to be active aon the main Social networks and building likes, engagement, and click through to your website. Google then sees this as an indicator of poplarity.
4) Usability Metrics - Actually using Google Analytics and other tracking to make changes to your website to improve user behaviour and experience metrics like bounce rate, avg. time on site etc.
I've been doing SEO and digital marketing for 11 years and there are still new things to learn. Keep on reading and implementing changes using what you learn. The SEO will start to become clearer the more you do and the more you learn and read about it...and the key thing - Be Patient! Results will come with on-going consistent work in the right areas.
Hopefully that helps and provides some encouragement for you. If you need any help and services by my company Odyssey New Media (odysseynewmedia.com), you can contact me on +447940420201 or email info (at) odysseynewmedia (dot) com.
Keep in mind that the goal of search engine results is to display the most relevant, informative and informational results to a search inquiry.
So, it should all start with your website. Why? Well anything you do online should be with the goal of generating and driving more traffic to your site. You should start by optimizing your current site. My advice is to keep your target audience or who you ideal customer is. Write down a list of what you think they would want to know of be looking for when the visit your site. Then pull your website up and check off what is right and create a list of what your site is missing. Use this is a guide to develop a plan page by page of what you need to fix. Also, check to make sure that each of your pages has a unique title tag and meta description that uses your major keyword for that page. Don't forget to make sure your site has a blog too.
There are obviously some other key elements that your website shoud have and I'd be happy to provide you with a complimentary audit if you'de like.
Next, of course after you have optimized your site you should brand your business online. This will help you to create a much larger digital footprint. To do this you should create or claim then optimize and link back to your site your business. Now there are 1000's of directories and business profile pages out there, so this can be a bit tricky, but be sure to at the very least do this for Google+, Bing, Yahoo and then your Social Media. You can then develop a plan to do these in increments that are feasible for you based on the best categories for your industry. These could include Local.com, Yelp, Manta, Home Advisor, Angie's List, etc.
Last, you should keep feeding your website new, informative, relevant content through different types of content such as blogs, videos, images and continue to post on social media and other web 2.0s.
Hope this was helpful and again if you would like to talk directly or take advantage of a free website audit connect with me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/jenniferhuntbbp
What stood out to me the most about what you asked was this "finding long tail keywords with low competition". Looking for low competition is great when it comes to SEM (Search Engine Marketing) but sometimes it might make long tail SEO harder for you.
This is just my personal opinion but ill explain (In detail lol) more about what this means and how to apply it below.
Long tail vs short key terms really depends on your business and the content you will be creating. Like Andy said "Write content that explains in detail how to change a tap. Include images and videos. The better you explain it, the more people will trust you." but you have to consider if you will be publishing other related content often.
When it comes to organic search rankings for a small business promoting content, you have to think of two KEY factors that will make it VERY hard or easy for you. Local SEO vs. trending topics / velocity, ok maybe 3 things lol.
Think about this ... If your business is a local moving company for example and you post to your companies website blog 3 times a week with tips about moving more efficiently in New York City for example. When people who live in the NY Area search for content about "moving more efficiently" your site will rank higher because you are a local business with a niche target market. Additionally, you can take advantage of trending searches using tools like Google Trends to find out when are the peak searches for moving in New York City I.E. what season or timeframe ect.
Lets say you find out that the google searches peak during spring, this means you title your blog post or create a new one called "Efficiency moving tips for New Yorkers during the spring". This will make the blog post limited to a timeframe but now you are taking advantage with this additional post of search trend velocity during the spring & Local NYC searchers. And don't forget social, I would suggest a spring social push and promote this content on Facebook during that peak season. It will get in front of more people and give your site that social currency that is very important to search engines.
I know thats a little long winded but just trying to give you an education on how this will work for you if you go the content route.
But Lets say you don't have time to post constantly on your blog because duh your running your business. If you are that same moving company and you want to rank high for organic searches constantly. You have to consider your sites structure and on-Page SEO. Doing an audit like Andy suggested on your website will be the first step and the next thing to do would be going about fixing any errors you find and design the information on your site with a focus around the long tail or short key terms you want to rank for.
And lastly, Make sure you have a good analytics platform like a google analytics installed on your website so that you can see what organic traffic you are already getting. If you rank OK as a moving company for "spring movers" for example and you also rank well for "New York Moving tips" you create a blog post that combines those two high competition short terms into a long tail low competition phrase like "Spring moving tips for New Yorkers" and link from the already ranking pages to this one. And that is a guaranteed way to boost your ranking a little here and there.
Hope all this info helps you out! And good luck on your business!
Search Engine Optimization or SEO is a process of optimizing a website in order to make it up to the standard of search engines. Now here's a question that why are we fulfilling the Search Engine's requirements? Right? Let me explain...
If you have a business but you don't have users/customers/community around your brand then its obviously useless to continue with it. You need a medium through which the users get to know about your business and in this regard SEO works as a bridge between users and your brand.
Its a common phenomenon that if a layman wants to hire any service or product he will Google it. Most probably hire someone or make a purchase from the website displayed with in the first page of search results. So, if your website is properly optimized and fulfilled with the Google's checklist or any other targeted search engine then it means you will get the traffic from a valuable source.
For making a website up to the Google's standard, multiple techniques are used to make it search engine and user friendly.
Hi Brandie - I wish I had more time to "demystify" SEO here in this forum today but let me at least leave you with this one important question I believe is important to ask yourself.
Is in fact "SEO" your objective or is successful marketing your objective? It's a question that must be asked simply because technology and website marketing strategies have changed so much. Many organizations like your sometimes use the acronym "SEO" but what they are really asking about is successful marketing. It's important for you to be able to answer this question because the advice, suggestions and recommendations you are searching for here on Mosaic will be very different depending on how you answer this base line question.
I personally hold certifications from UCLA in digital marketing and new media as well as inbound marketing credentials from HubSpot. If I knew you were specifically asking about SEO, I provide one set of answers. If, on the flip side you came back to me and said, no, I really meant marketing online, I would offer another set of solutions.
For example: If I answered your question in the context of SEO, my initial suggestion would be this - Once you uncovered and were comfortable with the results of the keyword analysis strategy you used in your question, you would then need to continue to expand this "SEO" strategy by completing the "On-Page SEO" component next. Meaning, you would tie 1 to 2 keywords to each page (as well as your new content strategy) and inset those keywords to every web page property that is appropriate. This would include title tags, description tags, image tags, URLs, and so on.
If, on the other hand your question was really about successful marketing, I would change the conversation to include how your SEO, Blog, Social Media, Lead Generation, Lead Nurturing & Analytics strategy fit together to build a solid & comprehensive online marketing plan.
So, part of demystifying SEO is understanding it's definition and then it's role. SEO (in my experience) now refers more to the actual, physical web page configurations that act as Google criteria and help you secure a better search engine ranking result in relation to a specific keyword or keyphrase. However, I want to stress that SEO (the way I am defining it here) is only a part of your online marketing strategy and maybe not the most important part.
With all of this said, I will leave you with this. Even if you successfully "SEO" every page on your web site, I would suggest that the blogging and social media elements might be more important to your long term success because these are the "living & breathing" components of your marketing plan. Yes, SEO is important but on it's on, it may not hold much value at all, ESPECIALLY if you operate in a very competitive area. When you take a step back from your marketing plan and consider those areas that may be most important, I will tell you that the answer is a no brainer to me and that is "customer experience".
When all is said and done, your SEO plan, your blog plan, your social media plan and so on must all be developed with the end goal of producing a better customer experience. Google can now measure the customer experience and if you offer one that is better than your competition, you will see things happen that are no doubt, some of the thinking behind your question today.
I hope this helps and please excuse any typos as I try to get as much thinking as I could in with the limited time I had today. Good luck with everything!
Virtual Support Systems
Here's a very basic overview, but feel free to ask more.
Firstly, SEO is about making your website popular amongst your customers and peers. Google rewards popular websites with great rankings.
That's it in a nutshell.
However, making it popular is where the work comes in. You've already mentioned long-tail keywords so you've done some work already. If you know a particular keyword (long or short) you want to rank for, write some content that explains something about that subject.
That content should be in-depth, shareable (i.e. people will think "that's good, I'll share it") and entertaining if possible.
My favourite example is for a plumber. Write content that explains in detail how to change a tap. Include images and videos. The better you explain it, the more people will trust you.
Shameless plug, I know, but you can then test your page against a competitor here : https://www.callowaygreen.co.uk/you-free-site-audit/
Fix the problems the auditor highlights, and you're on your way.
Next, you need links. You don't go and "build links" like the old days, instead you share your article with others, with your peers especially and maybe they'll link back to it.
If you do enough of that, your site will attract more customers and links and your ranking will improve.
But, it'll take a lot of work!