SEO can take a lot of time and effort. What good is spending all this time and effort if you can‟t see the fruits of your
Measuring overall traffic to your website from organic search is something you should look at on a weekly basis. This will help you determine if the changes you made in the previous weeks or months have started to have an impact.
Web analytics tools like Google Analytics can make it easy to see how many conversions have occurred on your website as a result of organic search traffic and keywords. These tools will also allow to you set up multiple conversion definitions (visits, leads, customer) so you can really get a sense of how much return you are getting on your SEO investment.
Measuring how many pages the search engines have indexed for your site is an easy way to measure the growth of your SEO efforts and your website. The more pages that are indexed, the easier it is to rank for more keywords.
Inbound links are the easiest way to determine how successful you have been at off-page SEO. HubSpot‟s Website Grader will provide you with the number of inbound links your website currently has. Track this metric monthly. Any growth is good.
Keep a list of the keywords that are driving traffic to your website from organic search. On a monthly basis, dive deeper into your organic search traffic and analyze what keywords were responsible for driving the traffic. Your brand keywords are usually going to be responsible for the bulk of it. If possible, separate out brand keywords and pay close attention to the non-branded keywords that are driving traffic to your website.
Select a list of the top 10 keywords for which you want to rank. Every month, go in and conduct a search on Google and see where you rank. Record your rank and you will be able to see if your SEO efforts have helped you improve. Make note of jumps of over five spots, because those changes are usually not the result of normal search engine updates and changes.
Moving forward! Let’s do this
By this point you should have a firm understanding of what SEO is, and why every online business needs to recognize how critical it is. Developing and executing an SEO strategy can be a daunting task. However, this process is completely manageable if you dedicate adequate time and resources to it. There are several things to consider when getting started with SEO.
Make a List of Keywords
Do some keyword research and make a list of all the keywords for which you would like to rank on the search engines. Rank this list in order of priority or relevance to your business. This should be a living and breathing document that you review and update at least on a monthly basis. This will ensure you continue conducting keyword research and allow you to make note of the keywords for which you are already ranking.
Build Keyword-Focused Pages
After conducting keyword research, you will have a good idea of how many specific webpages you want to create. Each webpage will need content and pictures. Also, you need to decide where these webpages will live on your website and what other pages or offers they should link to. Make a list of the assets that need to be created or gathered and devise a plan to get it done.
Set Up a Blog
As discussed previously, blogging can be an incredible way to rank for keywords and engage your website‟s users. If your business does not already have a blog, set one up and make a point to blog at least
Create a Link-Building Plan
Link building is the primary objective of off-page SEO. Dedicate some time to brainstorm the many different ways you can go about attracting inbound links to your website. Start small – maybe share your links with other local businesses in exchange for links to their sites. Write a few blog posts and share them on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and LinkedIn. Another great way to attract inbound links is to use your blog to post articles related to current events or news. That way you increase the chances of attracting links from news outlets or industry influencers.
Stay Current on SEO News & Practices
Like the overall marketing landscape, search engines are ever-evolving. Staying on top of current trends and best practices is a hard task. The best way is to read. There are multiple online resources that make it easy for you to stay on top of SEO news and changes that may impact your website. Here are a few resources to check out and get you started:
You should now have all of the tools and understand all of the concepts you need to get started on SEO basics. Now, take your time to figure the strategy that is right for you and start optimizing!
- Algorithm – The calculation the search engines use to find the most relevant information in relation to a search query.
- Alt Tags – Short snippets of code that allow you to tag each photo on your site with a short text blurb.
- Anchor Text – Text in your webpage content that is linked to another website or webpage.
- Black Hat SEO – A back-handed approach to SEO that involves shortcuts and manipulation of a website. It is prohibited by the search engines.
- Keyword Density – How often a keyword is mentioned on a page.
- Headline Tags – HTML code tags denoted by headline tags that make the text bigger than other text on the page. Head Terms – phrases more generic in nature (usually 1-2 keywords long) that garner
significantamount of search engine traffic, but provide little return.
- HTML – Stands for Hypertext Markup Language is a standardized code for tagging text files to
formatefont, color, graphic, and hyperlinks to create webpages.
- Inbound Links – Links to your website from external websites that are not on your domain.
- Indexing – The process used by the search engines to crawl the web, scanning webpages and storing information about them.
- Link Building – The process of generating inbound links from other websites.
- Link Juice – The boost given to a website‟s authority via inbound links from other authoritative websites.
- Long-tail – The theory used to explain that while a majority of search traffic results from a small percentage of keywords (the head)
theremillions of unique keywords that make up a significant volume of search traffic in aggregate (the tail)
- No-Follow – Tag placed in HTML code around links that are paid to tell the search engines not to give them any link juice.
- Search Query – Term used to describe the actual keyword or phrase a search engine user typed into the search engine.
- EM (Search Engine Marketing) – Refers to all aspects of search, including organic and paid listings.
- SEO (Search Engine Optimization) – The process of optimizing your website‟s content so it‟s easy for the search engines to find your content, index it, and determine how relevant it is to a specific search query.
- Tail Terms – Keywords phrases usually 3 or more keywords in length that garner a small volume of search traffic but are much more valuable because they provide
a traffic than head terms. betterqualified