For any business, whether big or small, it’s very important to build visibility and brand awareness. A business cannot grow if people don’t know about it. One of the most effective ways to build brand awareness and visibility is to generate traffic to your site using search engine optimisation (SEO).
Before you do anything, it’s important to note that over 50% of the American consumer will conduct online search on a product of interest. So, regardless of what business or industry you are in, it’s very important that you have some kind of presence online.
When web surfers are looking for specific services or products via Google, you want to make yourself visible to these people. This is where SEO comes into the equation. Basically, it’s a set of tools and instructions that you can use to get your site featured on the top of the major search engines like Google, which in turn, will drive large amounts of traffic to your website.
While you can get exceptional results from SEO, the truth is, that it can take a very long time to do so. However, if you know what you’re doing, right from the beginning, you can speed things up a little. This is where this article comes into the picture, as it provides you with a several tips that you should know about, before you start your SEO campaign.
1. Find the Best Keywords
You need to put yourself in the shoes of your clients, and think about the kinds of words you would use when looking for a specific service or product. If you’re selling home appliances, you would have to think about whether or not customers are likely to use more formal terms like television or abbreviations like TV.
You want to compile a list of at least 30 to 50 keywords, then plug them into Google AdWords. You will need to create an account first, from there you will be able to determine the validity of the keywords that you have discovered.
Google AdWords also has its own keyword tool that you can use to find additional keywords, to build up your list.
Once you have your keywords, you will need to feature them on the page you intend to rank on them.
There are many things for you to consider, for example, you can start by putting the keyword in the URL. You also want to have the keyword in the title of the article, as well as in your META descriptions, as this will improve click through rate. Additionally, you’ll want the keyword to feature within the content of the article.
2. Create an Analytics Account
A website that doesn’t have an analytics account attached to it, is like fishing in the dark. As the analytics data is crucial to improving the websites SEO. So, one of the first things you’ll want to do, is go and create an Analytics account (Google has their own one, that is free to use, and very popular). This service will help you keep track of all SEO data that you need.
3. Build Backlinks to Your Site
The more sites linking back to your website, the higher your site will rank in the search engines. For this reason, you’ll want to go out of your way to get webmasters of similar websites to link back to your site. You could go with a link exchange, and offer to give them a link in return for a link from their site.
Go with quality over quantity, when acquiring links. One link pointing back to your site from a university or chamber of commerce website, will help you a great deal more than a 100 links from unknown blogs.
4. Get Social
Social media is the trend nowadays, and a huge ally in the SEO world, with many people now flocking to it, and using it as a sort of search engine, in of itself. They go on there and look for products and services using the search function of Facebook, for example. If you have a presence on the site, then your company’s media profile will appear when they search for it – which will drive more traffic and hopefully more business your way.
5. Create Internal Links
Just focussing on driving visitors to your website, is not enough. As a site owner, you want your website to be engaging, you want your visitors to spend as much time as humanely possible on your website. You want them to view your products and read your content.
One way you can do this, is by adding internal links, redirecting your visitors to related content on your site. By keeping visitors on your site for longer, you are improving your search engine optimisation metrics. Bonce rate, dwell times and average time spent on page are all factors that can positivity effect your SEO efforts.
Linking internal also makes your website more organised and structured. Additionally, it’ll make it easier for the search engines spider bots to crawl your pages, find new content and index it, where applicable.
6. Use Google Search Console
If you sign up to Google Search Console and verify your website on it, over time it will tell you which keywords are driving the most people to your site, and which keywords you rank the best for.
Such data can be used to optimise your website’s SEO. You want to make sure the keywords you are using are actually driving traffic to your website. If Google is ranking a certain page very high, then you could try writing more content around it, so that you can leverage additional traffic from it. This is an essential tip for all small business owners.
7. Publish High-Quality Content
The primary task of any search engine is to provide end users with answers to their queries. So the most effective strategy for you to drive lots of traffic to your site, is to create high quality content for it. You could also go with infographics and videos, if it interests your readers. You should also consider updating older content, as this will keep your site relevant, over time.
If you have an effective content strategy in place, it will help position your site as a leader in whichever field you’re in.
8. Be patient
You should monitor your results from the very first day, but don’t expect the results to come in fast. To rank high in the search engines, you can expect it to take several months, at the very least.
You also need to consider the reality that SEO is constantly changing. So not everything you implement will work as intended. So, keep up to speed on the latest changes, and test things out.
Uchenna Ani-Okoye is a former IT Manager who now runs his own computer support website https://www.compuchenna.co.uk.