SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, which is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results. The world of search engine optimization is complex and ever-changing, but you can easily understand the basics, and even a small amount of SEO knowledge can make a big difference. If you’re short on time but have the money, an SEO agency or consultant is an option. But if you’re short on money, use these do-ityourself SEO tips to improve your organic rankings:
- Create a startup SEO plan: Taking SEO into consideration early on in the business development stage is more likely to bring in success for your startup. All you need to do is build a cohesive SEO plan that aligns with the foundation of your business.
- Keyword research: Always start with keyword research. Don’t assume that you know what consumers want. Essentially, keyword research is an SEO activity that involves finding the most popular words or phrases your target customers use when searching for what you do. Some of the keyword research tools you can use are Google Keyword Planner, Keyword Tool, UberSuggest etc. Make a list of your keywords and longtail phrases, divided by priority and search volume. This will help drive and organize content for your website, blog, and social media.
- Build up your site with keywords in mind: Depending on your target keyword, it could be your homepage, a landing page, a product page or a blog post. You’ll also need to ensure that these pages are optimized for search. This is known as on-page SEO. On-page SEO is the process of optimizing a website’s on-page elements (such as the content, structure, code, etc.) to help it rank higher in Google.
- Content: Publish content regularly. Be consistent. Create content that matches search intent. Just look at the current top-ranking pages to figure out what people want to see. Don’t just think about SEO. Be it a landing page, product page or a blog post, the copy on these pages is supposed to persuade. If it’s convoluted and complex, not only is it bad for SEO, it’s going to be bad for business.Quality content helps to build backlinks for your website. Backlinks are one of the building blocks of a strong SEO campaign. Backlinks are a sign of a popular website, and they’re important for SEO because some search engines (especially Google) give more credit to websites that have a lot of backlinks.
- Create, build and maintain social media presences: Social media allows you to connect with your customers, industry partners, competitors and the general public. Every small business should have a social media presence on a few main channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
- Make your site secure by using HTTPS: While there is only a slight ranking boost, you should still make sure that you are using HTTPS sitewide because security is essential.
- Understand Google Analytics: You can’t optimize what you don’t measure. The importance of analytics in digital marketing is akin to financial reports in business. Both are essential to track performance. Google Analytics is a great place to start, especially because almost 80% of searchers worldwide use Google. This tool helps you know where your visitors came from, segment your customer base, create campaigns, set and track goals, learn which keywords bring in the most organic traffic and much more.
- Install a sitemap: Having a sitemap for your website is important. You can easily DIY this and create + submit your own sitemap to Google.