I must admit that in the past this has daunted me, but with the growth of simple DIY websites in recent years, there has been a related growth in the field of DIY Digital Marketing tools, and an increase in sites, blogs and tutorial videos that try to make this mysterious world more accessible to every website owner, and help every site to rank more highly within the Search Engine Results pages. I will try to convey just a little of that information in the next 400 words – I hope it helps!
So where do you start with SEO?
Some good, solid keyword research should be first on your to do list. A helpful tip that I have learnt from my SEO journey – try to stay away from technical jargon that you understand and use every day, but that your customers might not understand. The idea with keyword research is to determine some of the most important words or phrases that describe your unique business and that customers would type into the Search Engines if they were looking specifically for your business. For example, if you are a cleaning company in Aylesbury, a keyword like ‘Hygiene Standards Operative Buckinghamshire’ isn’t necessarily something that a potential customer would type into Google. Try ‘Office Cleaning Company Aylesbury’ or ‘House Cleaning Specialist Buckinghamshire’. However, do also bear in mind that there might be competition for these keywords from competing businesses in your area – a tool like Google Keyword Planner will be able to give you more information about competition for these keywords and an idea of how many people search for each term every month so that you know whether a keyword is worthwhile.
So, you’ve done your Keyword research – what next?
How do you ensure that your pages are optimised appropriately for each keyword? If you have a WordPress website, I can strongly recommend a plugin called Yoast to help you find out whether you have optimised your pages appropriately. For each of your website’s pages, Yoast will ask what keyword you would like to target, and advise what you can do to make the website rank more highly with the Search Engine Results pages (i.e. include the focused keyword in the title of the page and the copy on the page, etc. without ‘overdoing it’ and stuffing your keyword in as many times as is humanly possible…).
Consider some paid-for advertising
Search Engine Optimisation is just one aspect of a Digital Marketing Strategy, and so by merely optimising a few pages, the likelihood is that you won’t progress to number one in the search rankings overnight (unfortunately) - it can take months! But it will all help – especially if you want to do some paid-for advertising using Google AdWords, etc., to help promote your business. This is due to the fact that Google gives every page that you are trying to advertise a quality score that can determine how much you pay-per-click; if your page is optimised more effectively than a competitors, it is likely that you with pay less than them!
It's well worth getting some help or taking some advice on Adwords because it's a minefield and you can end up spending a fortune for very little return if it's not set up correctly!
Other ways of Optimising - Link building and Social Media
In addition to your Search Engine Optimisation, ‘Link Building’ is also strongly recommended as part of an effective Digital Marketing Strategy. This involves building as many good quality links from sites with good ‘trust ratings’ back to your own website as possible! Wondering what kind of sites Google, Yahoo and Bing like the most? Well Social Media platforms rank quite highly with them, so why not try to ensure that your business has an active and positive presence on a variety of different social media sites (like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Google+), and that you link back to your website from those platforms on a regular basis? Although it can be time consuming to set up the profiles, if you have time to spare an hour or two a week to post relevant and engaging content on your Social Media business accounts (some of which points your audience back to your business website), hopefully you will not only create some great free publicity for your business on the individual Social Media platforms, but you'll also see positive results with your position in the Search Engine rankings.
Don't be scared!
As I mentioned earlier in this blog – there are some great SEO and website marketing tools available now if you would like to learn more about boosting your website’s position within the Search Engine results pages. Many developers of SEO tools (Moz, Yoast, Wordstream etc.) have handy blogs that touch upon a variety of interesting Digital Marketing topics, all of which can be perused for free!
So don’t be scared of SEO! It won’t bite – if you have the time to dedicate to a well thought out digital strategy, I’m sure you’ll see positive results over the next 12 months (and it always seems to taste sweeter when you do it yourself!).
We can help!
If you don't have time, then we DO, so just email or call us on 01296910191 to find out how we can help!
Happy optimising everyone!