Making SEO a Priority for Your Business in 2021: Where to Start
All businesses big and small can benefit from search engine optimization. An SEO strategy is the planning, outlining, and implementation of steps to improve your search engine rankings so that you can achieve more organic traffic. While it may sound simple at first, SEO is actually a complicated process, so it’s important that you learn as much as you can about how it works and why you should be doing it to improve your marketing strategy.
Table of Contents
Where to Start with SEO?
If you’re new to SEO, it can be difficult to know where to start. Here’s a guide for starting your first SEO campaign.
Create a List of Keywords
Keywords are an integral part of your SEO strategy. Everything revolves around keywords, which is why keyword research should always be your first step. Look at some of your competitor’s websites to see what keywords they’re using.
You can also find keywords that target your customer’s searches with the right tools like Google Suggest, which is what you see when you begin typing in a keyword in the search field. The populated list of suggestions can give you insight into other keywords that might be valuable for you. Make sure you have a healthy list of both short and long-tail keywords.
Search engine results pages (SERPs) can help you determine what’s working for those keywords. Take a look at Google’s first page for your keywords and take notes of any patterns you find. You may find that one keyword results in listicles on the first page of Google, which tells you that anything you write for your website should be in the form of a listicle like the others.
Create Something Different or Better
Once you’ve analyzed SERPs for your chosen keywords, you can either create something different or something better than what’s out there. If you want to stand out from your competition, you may want to start with creating different content. Content that stands out from the rest will get tons of attention because it’s different, which increases the likelihood of it being shared.
Creating something better can help you beat out your competitors with content. You may find a plethora of long-form blogs about a particular topic. Study these articles and determine how you can make them better. You may want to do this by taking a look at the comments section of blogs and noticing any patterns in the questions that commenters ask. This can help you elongate content and provide more valuable information, especially if you’re writing about topics that change over time.
Write Quality Blogs
Blogs can help you boost your SEO by allowing you to target particular keywords, provide greater visibility, help you remain current, and enable you to maintain your authority and trust. Take a look at this example of 1Dental’s blog.
1Dental provides access to dental insurance plans, so their blog covers various topics about dental health and dental insurance. All three of their most recent blogs tackle topics that make 1Dental a thought leader in the industry. Their blog also instructs visitors to follow them on social, which can improve their social media marketing strategy as well.
Get Quality Backlinks
If you want to improve your rankings on search engines and create Google-friendly content, you will need to make getting backlinks a priority. The more high-quality backlinks your website or content has, the more likely it is to rank on the first page of SERPs.
To get backlinks, you first have to do a little research. It’s important to determine why people link back to specific pieces of content in your target industry then use that information to create great content.
For example, if your business focuses on the pet industry, you may find the most shared links, and the content that gets more backlinks, provides detailed information about training along with actionable tips and tricks. If this is the case, you will create an article that is packed with the particular training tips people are looking for. You can combine all available training tips for puppies in one article instead of focusing on one training technique per article.
Creating valuable content for your audience is key to getting backlinks. You can also do backlink outreach by finding other industry experts who might be willing to use your blog as a resource in their articles and write guest blogs on other websites that link back to your own.
Backlinks have to deal with off-page optimization, while keyword optimizing your website content for SEO is a form of on-page optimization. There are tons of things you’ll have to do to optimize your on-page SEO, including internal linking, optimizing your web page with the right keywords, and adding content where applicable.
Optimize for Search Intent
When you’re targeting a specific keyword, you should always keep user intent in mind. Remember that long, detailed guides can be a great part of your SEO strategy, but there are some cases where search engine users want quick, simple tips. For example, if you’re writing an article about training a puppy, you might want to write about tips and tricks rather than a long-drawn-out process that pet owners cannot implement right away. When it comes to finding out search intent for target keywords, return to your SERPs to determine the search intent of the keyword.
Work with Influencers
While the use of social media can help with your SEO strategy by getting the word out about your new blog posts and content, you can also use social media influencers to boost your SEO. Expert influences with high engagement rates can help you build quality inbound links, gain social traction, create evergreen content, and extend your reach and engagement, all of the things that can benefit your SEO strategy.
You can find engagement rates easily with the GRIN Engagement Rate Calculator. Look at the example below. We typed in Kylie Jenner’s handle because she’s one of the most popular influencers on Instagram.
As you can see, the calculator shows you how many followers she has, her engagement rate, and how many posts. For more detailed information, you can input your information.
Improve Your Content’s Appearance
Content marketing should involve design as well as copy. You can write amazing content, but if it doesn’t look inviting and digestible, no one is going to want to read it. Make sure to include visuals that can help you explain complex topics. These visuals can be anything from photos that you take, infographics, and even video.
Improve and Update Content
Always improve your content and update it. Instead of simply reposting the same blog, go through your old blogs and update them with new information and content that is relevant to your audience. If you work in an industry that’s always evolving or has recently had drastic changes, make sure that you replace outdated information with new data and statistics so that your content always remains relevant.
The Bottom Line
As a business, being seen online is essential, especially in the digital work we live in today. One of the easiest ways to grow organic traffic is through search engine optimization. There are various SEO strategies you can take advantage of to grow your online presence, such as content marketing, influencer marketing, keyword research, and more. With these tips, you’ll be one step closer to growing your brand and finding more leads.
Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. He is currently a contributing editor for 365 Business Tips. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys the San Diego life, traveling and music.