You may be thinking there’s that buzzword again. You see it all the time; digital marketing specialists talk about its importance and how everyone needs it. Yet, you’re just trying to run your company, and you get blasted with all this technical marketing magic; your knowledge here is between 0 and 1% on what the SEO essentials are.
Many claim they have good SEO strategies. But what is it exactly? Why does this three-letter acronym feel as if marketing experts are wearing hooded wizarding robes trying to manage this topic?
What is SEO?
Let’s start at the beginning. SEO or Search Engine Optimization is a technique which works to naturally bring you up in the rankings for internet search engines. You only need to focus on Google search at the start anyway, as it’s the most popular. No need to concern yourself with the others just yet.
Yet SEO strategies work across all types of search products. This set of methods is meant for you to generate leads and traffic from potential customers and clients who are actively looking for something directly related to your product or service.
Translation: this gets you the correct type of visitors to your site.
SEO helps with customer awareness and helping your target market know that your brand exists. If you don’t want to be a needle in that digital haystack, then you’re going to need to help build that route for people to find you.
Why is SEO essential?
Traffic acquired through SEO includes some of your site’s highest quality web visitors. That means those customers that come through the SEO channel are the most coveted leads because they’re active participants considering your product suite.
There’s already a level of engagement, and the acquisition costs are much lower than other types of digital marketing. Other kinds of digital marketing, like social media advertisements or video ads, can be costly to develop and have lost their luster in this new age.
It can be helpful at the beginning when growing brand awareness, but the digital marketing breakdown should always be trending towards a more SEO-rich focus. Therefore, it’s better to consider other growth hacking options when initiating your brand presence.
Your costs start going down, and you begin to get what is known as organic traffic. This means you’ve organically acquired the engaged visitors, and that’s why the conversions are so much higher.
Customers feel as if they’re looking for the product, not being hard sold a product without even knowing if they need it or not. So they’re still being sold a product as they come to your site, but they don’t know marketing was involved that brought them there.
SEO is a bit of a chicken-and-egg situation as organic traffic grows, and your SEO rankings grow even more. This, in turn, leads to higher Google page ranks and domain authority that will, you guessed it! Lead more customers to your site. So make sure to grow and feed the SEO beast constantly.
Think of SEO as a running faucet. You want to turn it on and keep it on, The water is content, and when you turn it off, you’ll need to start all over again.
What goes into the proper essentials for SEO?
Here’s the magic recipe that will help cast the SEO spell properly. Content. That’s it. We can stop here, and that’ll be enough if you truly understand what’s behind that word. But, for those seeking further clarifications on what is meant, let’s proceed!
Content is king (or queen) for a reason. Google and Bing (and other popular search engines that copy Google or Bing) use these bots called web crawlers, digital spiders that crawl and review your site.
What they’re looking for is the authority and authenticity of your website. Ironically, a robot is looking for authentic human creation. It’s also a system we can work with. The content portion means that producing a steady flow of content on your site that’s relevant to your business or industry will have the crawlers periodically reviewing your site and notice that you have relevance.
As you grow that content, the crawlers start to see you as an authority on the subject and will continue to push you through the ranks. So make sure to update the content regularly while at the same time eliminating or refreshing outdated content. Another area to focus on with SEO is keywords and longtail keywords.
These keywords are your new best professional friends. You’ll use them so much that you want to make sure you’re ready for the commitment! So if you’re going to write content for entrepreneurs, tips on how to be a successful entrepreneur (long-tail, as it’s much more specific), or marketing advice for entrepreneurs (another long-tail example), make sure to include those words in your content.
When it comes to images and videos, they have their own SEO rules and should always include alt tags and descriptions, as those are becoming more popular with SEO growth.
Sorry, I had to get technical here since it’s about websites. However, metadata is easily done nowadays without looking like an experienced coder or hacker. Metadata comes in the form of meta tags, which are hardcoded keywords into your site, and meta descriptions, which are short blurbs up to 150 characters that help describe what your site or content is about. Pretty simple so far, right?
This is a relatively easy one to set and forget, but make sure you’re set with your initial keyword choices, as those will be with you for the entire SEO and marketing journey. That’s it. This is as technical as we’re getting here today. I promise.
Linking, backlinks, and other combinations with the word link are your connector internally and externally through the digital plane. One of the greatest ways to boost your SEO and coveted by many SEO experts is backlinking.
Yes, now we start at the end. Backlinking is where another site actually links content you’ve created into their content. Remember authority and authenticity? This helps to build that area and is why relevant content (again as above, it’s #1) is so crucial. You want others to be able to use it for their purposes, so you link your pieces of content to each other, and have your content linked to from within the content on other websites.
You need to clean your website, just like you need to clean the house. Those pesky machines crawling your site act as digital mothers who inspect how clean your website is. That means make sure you don’t have any dead links on your site (links that go nowhere) and eliminate any 404 error webpages and links.
Get rid of that old content from five years ago, especially if it’s irrelevant or your business has changed. You want your website shining like a new car, not an old rusty one.
So can I do these SEO essentials myself?
In the beginning, you should do SEO yourself. As any entrepreneur worth their salt knows, understanding how all aspects of the business run in some capacity will help your overall growth and development as an individual and a company.
You probably don’t have any choice either since you need to allocate funds to other areas. So keep in mind to keep your site content-rich, check out the latest news on SEO tactics, format the content to be Google-friendly, and do your SEO essentials with a great big smile because it’s like a faucet of running water.
To learn other tactics that will help your journey as an entrepreneur, check out some of our other topics here. And if you want to Get The Gist™ and know when we release new articles, drop your email in the form below. Good luck and Happy Writing!