If you haven’t figured it out already, your website needs to be optimized and demonstrate authority in order to rank highly in the search results.
Business owners are often ladled with so many tasks that learning how to incorporate SEO can be a tall order to execute.
Keep the SEO of your website on track by establishing a keyword-based foundation. Starting from ground zero means gearing up for the long haul, but it also means you’ll have the opportunity to get things right.
There are five foundational elements an SEO experts use to get your website to rank; keyword research, content mapping, optimization, link building and content distribution.
Using logic, reason and forward-thinking will enable you to execute each of these elements while developing your business website.
Identify keywords that are crucial to your business
As a precursor to any content creation, your keyword research will pave the way for droves of visitors that are interested in your business solutions. The simplest form of planning is just brainstorming the major topics of your website.
Google, as well as every other major search engine, graduated from ranking websites based on keywords to ranking websites based on keyword topics. Your main services and product categories are therefore your target keywords and represent major pillars of your website.
Breakdown the major topics of your business
Your initial keyword planning should begin with a simple breakdown of the major topics. The list should include the most important subtopics that best describe your major keyword topic.
For example, if your business were home renovations, your list of major keyword topics would be:
For each of these topics, you would break them down further in a similar manner.
This initial planning phase provides you with a glimpse of how to silo your site structure so it makes sense for users and search engines.
Image source: magecom.net
Analyze your keyword options
Use a keyword tool to analyze the initial keyword topics you’ve created in the brainstorming stage.
Your selection for your major keyword topics should be based on the most relevant with the highest search volume and lowest competition.
Your target keywords will be incorporated in your titles and URLs which is why the initial planning is essential to building an optimized website.
Create long-tail keywords for ranking blog content
You can supercharge your website’s authority by creating content that is topically related. Your blog content should be geared towards answering questions and providing solutions to common problems your audience experiences.
List the problems and commonly asked questions that are associated with your major topics. As you dig deeper into each subtopic, it will become clear what issues need to be discussed in detail.
For example, kitchen renovations are broken down into countertops, lighting, flooring, etc. Flooring would be broken down into laminate, tile and hardwood. List the questions associated with hardwood flooring.
What is the best type of wood for hardwood floors?
What type of wood lasts the longest?
How long does it take to install hardwood flooring?
Type these questions into Google and see what shows up in the search results.
If the results resemble detailed blog posts, consult your keyword tool to see how much traffic each search term generates. You can use different variations within the context of providing a solution to a problem.
Keep in mind, you’re not looking for heaps of traffic, but enough that makes sense to drive interested visitors to your site. By providing a detailed solution to the very question they are searching you are building the confidence and trust of your audience.
Make ranking for long-tail search terms your short term goal.
As you build traffic for related long-tail phrases, you increase your authority for your larger target terms. This also results in visitors making their way to your main pages that convert visitors into clients.
SEO content creation
With a detailed keyword strategy, you can begin mapping content for every keyword you’ve established within your research. A simple, yet effective approach is to implement the skyscraper method, which is also coined 10X content. This simply means analyzing what content is ranking and publishing content that’s 10 times better.
Word count isn’t a direct ranking factor but it can help to identify the level of detail that satisfies search intent. If you see 4000-word articles on the pages that rank, it’s a clue that users are looking for content that dives deep into detail.
Outperform competing pages by covering every aspect that is covered within their pages-and then include content that will elevate the standard. Excelling in quality means adding multimedia, new information, original data and research.
As Google’s John Mueller puts it:
“Try to focus on your users and figure out what their needs are and what you can do to provide something that is really unique and compelling and different from everyone else in that area that you’re active in.”
The best approach to content creation is to make the best possible experience for users. Your success in this area is reflected in the links your page acquires and the user engagement statistics your page generates.
When you can effectively produce a better solution to the intent of a user’s search, you’ve accomplished your content creation goal.
Optimize your content
Make your pages search engine friendly by placing the most important keywords in your meta tags and sprinkled within your content. Leverage the opportunities that are available in the SERP such as optimizing for featured snippets, People Also Ask Box and making use of structured data markup.
Make your page eligible for featured snippets and PAA boxes by creating short succinct answers to the questions that already appear in these features.
Tag your subtitles with the appropriate h tags to indicate the importance of the subtopic and provide a direct summary within 40-60 words immediately following your subtitle.
This featured snippet was won doing exactly that. Here’s the snippet:
And here’s how the actual text appears midway down the page.
Aim to be featured with rich results by using structured data markup wherever it applies. If it makes sense to use reviews snippets, faq or how-to schema take advantage of the opportunity for increased click-through rate to your page.
At a bare minimum, include your target keyword within the URL, title, image alt tags and a few times within your content.
Build links from sites with relevant traffic
Choose a link building strategy that gets your page on a website with relevant traffic. Choose link prospects as if there were no search engines so your perspective remains focused on who exactly will be referred to your website. This approach makes qualifying link prospects clearer because your choice is based on finding websites with strong ties to your content.
For this reason, most business owners resort to two major link building methods; guest posting and resource link building.
Submit an article as a guest author
Guest posting is ideal because it allows you to link from content that is highly related to the page in which you’re trying to build authority. You can find guest posting sites by searching Google using the following search operative:
[your topic or keyword] + inurl:write for us
The search results will list websites that are open to receiving articles from guest authors.
Choose the sites that make sense for your content and have a decent flow of traffic. Confirm the traffic the site gets by using SEMRush.
Simply enter the URL of the domain and make sure the organic traffic flow in your country isn’t an absolute zero.
Resource link building
Many websites have published pages in which they will link out to resources they believe beneficial to their website visitors. The owners will often welcome new resources that provide value and add your link-assuming your content is actually worth linking to from their site.
You might find websites where the owners use their resource page as a bargaining tool to get links for their site. Keep in mind that a few “link exchanges” won’t harm your site, but too many will result in a devaluation of the links you’re acquiring.
Find resource link prospects using the search operatives:
[your topic or keyword] + inurl:resource
[your topic or keyword] + inurl:links
Do your due diligence in vetting the quality of the resource pages you find. If there are a ton of unrelated links on the page, move on as it’s likely to be a low-quality page.
Hopefully, you’re engaged in building an audience on one or two social platforms that are relevant to your business.
Developing a large audience will increase the number of eyes that view your content. Apart from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Linkedin, consider other methods of content distribution on platforms with a large subscribership.
Sites like Medium and Slideshare are good examples of underrated methods for content distribution. Post your content or different variations of it on these sites with a link back to your original page. You can build a subscribership that receives your new posts delivered directly to their inbox.
Don’t forget about the grandaddy of content marketing – email marketing.
This method of marketing boasts an average of 3800% ROI and gets more shares, likes and user engagement that most social media sites. Creating an email campaign is cost-effective and extremely valuable for achieving conversions and driving traffic.
Implement SEO in your daily operations
Part of developing a successful website is establishing the SEO strategy at the onset of development. As your business grows it becomes beneficial to have specific routines and procedures in place for creating new content that drives traffic.
Although it helps, you don’t need to be an SEO consultant to get started on the right track for developing a website that ranks highly for vital keywords. Establish a solid foundation as early as possible and monitor your success.
It’s much easier to incorporate SEO while building your business when you have the right essentials in place.
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- How To Incorporate SEO While Building Your Business - October 13, 2020