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A Beginner’s Guide To SEO

Have you ever noticed how some businesses always seem to appear on the first page of search engine results? From the outside looking in, it might feel like they own the place while their competitors play a virtual hide-and-seek game where the “seeker” never “finds.”

If the latter example sounds familiar, take heed – your business doesn’t have to linger in the online shadows.

And it doesn’t mean your competitor is better than you. The chances are good they tapped into search engine optimization, or SEO tactics, to help them appear in the top results.

Are you ready to come into the light and learn more about how an SEO strategy can help your company become a mover and shaker online? Keep reading!

The ABCs of SEO: A Beginner's Lifeline

SEO might sound like a fancy industry buzzword, but at the core of search engine optimization, it describes taking steps to boost website visibility in search results. The higher your site lands for relevant products and services, the better.

Think of it as renovating your digital storefront so that when someone strolls down the internet’s main street of search results, they can’t help but drop in to find out how you can help. 

Let’s dive into more of the basics!

Keywords: Your Digital Magnets

Digital magnets in SEO

Imagine you’re a detective looking for clues. In the search world, these “clues” are known as keywords, and they help draw an audience to you. You can brainstorm the words, questions, or keyword phrases your customers might type into Google when looking for your services to start your journey.

For example, if you’re a plumber in Cleveland, “leaky faucet repair in Cleveland” could be a golden ticket. But be careful not to overuse keywords! It’s essential to strike a balance, use them wisely, and incorporate them naturally in website pages, supporting content, titles, and meta descriptions.

Meta Descriptions: Your Digital Handshake

A meta description is like the teaser on the back of a book. Typically,  this is a short sentence or two that falls under your website URL when shown as a result. Think of it as a fast elevator pitch that lets potential visitors know, “Hey, this website page has exactly what you want or need!” and motivates them to click through. Be sure that it’s crisp and engaging for optimal results.

Ideally, a meta description should be at most 160 characters. And remember to use the primary keyword somewhere in the metatext. This attention to detail is impactful, as search engines use metadata to help determine what the page is about when crawling, indexing, and ranking websites.

meta descriptions as digital handshakes in SEO

Content: King, Queen, and the Entire Royal Court

Content isn’t just the king of the internet; it makes up the entire monarchy! Your website should be an extension of your brand. 

Strive to provide value, solve problems, and simplify life. Whether you are adding helpful blog posts, infographics, or videos, they should complement your business and be relevant and engaging. 

A great example would be a professional cleaning company doing a video about types of non-toxic cleaners that are safe for pets, children, older adults, and those with sensitivities. This content is helpful and offers opportunities for cross-promotion on video and social platforms.

Mobile-Friendliness

Mobile-Friendliness: Don't Miss Out On Mobile Opportunities

How many people do you know don’t have a  smartphone? Perhaps one or two older relatives who want nothing to do with technology? Today, a website that plays nice with mobile devices is a necessity. Check your site using multiple devices, including Smartphones, laptops, tablets, and standard screen monitors. Ideally, it should load as quickly as a wink. A mobile-friendly, fast-loading site is a must to stay competitive online.

Link Love: Make Friends in the Digital Playground

Earning links from reputable websites tells search engines, “Hey, this site is trustworthy and valuable!” 

In addition to linking to your site from other platforms, such as social media platforms, provide content that’s so good that others can’t resist linking and sharing. And don’t forget to return the favor by linking to helpful, relevant, and high-quality content on your site.

Local SEO: Be the Big Fish in the Local Pond

For location-based businesses, implementing local SEO narrows the playing field. Active directory listings and an accurate Google Business Profile that ties everything together are impactful in local search. Be bold and ask happy customers to leave positive reviews of their experience. 

Ensure that your contact and business information is consistent across the web. Errors can lead to missed communications and opportunities to connect with potential clients.

SEO

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How long does it take to see results from SEO?

A: SEO is like losing weight. It isn’t something that generally happens overnight. Significant rankings and website traffic improvements could take a few months. Other factors, like the strength of your competition and your current website, also come into play.

Q: Is SEO something I can DIY, or should I hire a professional?

A: Basic SEO is something anyone can do if they are willing to learn. However, if saving time and a professional strategy to scale your business up is vital to you, seeking the help of an expert online marketing company offers a straightforward solution.

Q: How often should I update my website’s content?

A: Aim to add fresh, relevant content as often as possible or as needed, whether weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly. Another advantage? You have something to share on social media platforms for free outreach.

Q: Do social media activities affect SEO?

A: Directly, no. However, a robust social media presence can drive more traffic to your website and increase your brand’s visibility, indirectly boosting your SEO efforts.

Lights, Camera, Action!

Remember,  you don’t have to embark on this journey alone. Whether you’re juggling the demands of your business or prefer to have experts by your side, our team is here to lend a hand. 

Blue Noda specializes in crafting SEO strategies that breathe life into your online presence. From keyword research to content creation and everything in between, we have the skills and savvy to elevate your website to the stars. Contact us today to start the conversation!

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