Many people hear the phrase all the time, yet they have no idea what it actually means.
SEO or “Search Engine Optimization,” is the art of optimizing certain content or web pages for the search engines.
Wikipedia states SEO as, “the process of affecting the visibility of a website or a web page in a web search engine’s unpaid results—often referred to as “natural”, “organic”, or “earned” results.”
To put it plainly, practicing SEO, is actually increasing the chances of a web page, website, or post being seen in a search result naturally, or without paying for the top slot.
Knowing this, and how to do it, can bring about a successful website that actually adds productivity, leads, and sales to your business, as opposed to a website that does little more than cost money. A businesses web presence is the businesses future. 92% of businesses have a website. Of that, how many are correctly optimized? I don’t believe anyone knows that answer for sure. I do know that if all websites were optimized correctly, Google would have a very tough job.
SEO is important to any business. Without SEO, your business will not be found by the major search engines or your prospected clients.
Say that you have a painting business.
Sure, you have a few before and after pictures, your contact info, and maybe even a testimonial or two on your web sites main page or landing page. If you do not have a blog attached, or a number of pages with the correct articles using the correct keywords in the precise places, your site will not be ranked because the search engines will not know what you are offering.
This same painting business should have articles, videos, and stories about painting estimates, quotes, painting materials, types of painting jobs etc. These articles should be in a blog attached to the website, or directly on the site’s pages. That way the next time a user Google’s “local house painter,” Google, as well as the other search engines, know to display your painting businesses website. There are many other tricks to helping the search engines find you included in SEO, however, this is the main leg work of it. Other tricks can be found in the article, Building Your Businesses Online Presence is Imperative.
Keyword research is a process of the digital marketing plan which is imperative. Knowing what words to use and when, is the only way that you can craft the content, blog or web page to help your SEO.
A keyword tool must be used for this Google has AdWords, a free tool for finding relevant keyword suggestions. You must have a Google account, and set up an AdWords account for free.
There are also third party keyword planner tools like KWFinder. Finding a keyword tool which works for you is a must when trying SEO. Use the tool to create a list of Keywords for creating your content.
Using the same example as before, if I have a house painting business, I would put house painter into the keyword planner tool. The results would be Keywords like,
- House Painters
- Wall painter
- Painting contractors
- Professional painters
- Home painting
- Paint house
- Painting services
- Interior paint
And So on.
Now that we know what SEO is and have a list of relevant keywords, it is time to practice our SEO by crafting new original keyword rich content. Google loves original content and will actually penalize your website for copying or stealing your writing from another source. Penalized sites will not “rank” or show up at the top of a search result. This can mean a loss of profit for many businesses. My advice just do not do it. It is just as easy to just write something new.
Content can be created in many different forms and dispersed in as many as well. The most basic are the web page itself. Lacing but not over “stuffing” your web pages with just the right amount of keywords placed in just the right spots in the right format can be a dream to a search engine. Creating a page with repetitive keywords will work against you, however, so being knowledgeable here is key.
Aside from your web pages, a blog is a great way to enrich your website with the correct content. Writing stories, summaries, and lessons will incorporate your keywords without making it obvious that you are trying to rank higher. The second benefit to actually creating content that is worthy is that your clients and customers will appreciate it as well as the search engines.
After the keyword rich content is created, somehow it must make it out to the world, Google included. The latest trend for this is leveraging social media outlets like Facebook. If you have a blog attached to your site you can have it set to post to your social media outlets when the article gets posted. This is a great way to gain visibility. Posting on a blog, on a social media site, or even just updating your webpages will increase your SEO, your “following” and your client base.