Are you wondering, “How do I improve my SEO?”. Luckily, it’s not too difficult to undertake the basics on your own – no matter what your tech skill level is. So, let’s get started on how to improve your SEO score!
If Content Marketing is the art of marketing, then Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the science of marketing. The purpose of SEO is to increase your website’s ranking on search engines. Think Google, Bing, etc. This is done by optimising your website. This is the perfect way to increase your website’s traffic in the organic section of search engines.
The cornerstones of SEO are keyword research, backlinks and on-page optimisation. However, there’s a lot more to SEO and there’s plenty of room for debate, too. We’ll be discussing different ways of improving your SEO in our blog in bite-sized chucks. Just remember, even the most basic SEO can be super effective. So, before you enter the unknown, let’s start off with the basics and look to building healthy, happy SEO!
If you’re asking yourself, “How do I optimise my website?” keep reading this introductory guide. You’ll learn what SEO is and how you apply it to your website. Until now, you may not have implemented SEO on your website. And that’s okay. In the meantime, you can build your SEO foundation and slowly take control of your website the way you’d like.
1# Find your SEO keywords
In a nutshell, SEO is creating high-quality content across all your pages and blog posts – including optimising content around specific keywords (and building backlinks, but we’ll get to this later). Keywords are the very thing that makes your website discoverable, so that means using relevant and trending keywords is a must. In other words, it can help your website rank above your competitor’s website.
Finding the right keywords is a process. It is true that it can be trial and error. But once you have your keyword list, you can optimise your website pages accordingly. If you have ten or fewer pages on your website, this will be a relatively easy task to undertake and repeat. However, the more pages you optimise, the greater your SEO output. If you’re ‘wearing too many hats’ and it’s simply not possible to optimise every page… then don’t. For that reason, you’ll want to focus your SEO keyword efforts on specific pages, such as high traffic areas of your website instead.
Improve my SEO with Keyword Tools
You can find your keywords in a number of different ways. You can search what keywords your competitors are using on a website like Wordstream or you can research keywords on Google Ads using their Google Keyword Planner tool. Alternatively, you can download a Chrome extension like Keywords Everywhere that can show you the search volume of the keywords you type into Google’s search engine.
Top tip: update your keywords once every three months.
2# Backlinks can improve your SEO Score
Backlinks are simply hyperlinks from an outside website that points back to your website. In other words, when another website mentions your website on their website. The general rule is… the more backlinks your website has, the higher your website will rank. You can categorise backlinks as ‘votes’. The more votes you have, a search engine, like Google, will determine that your website is authoritative, popular and most importantly, relevant.
Following this logic, you’ll need to have a plan to build your backlinks! But, how?
The most effective way of earning backlinks is to focus on quality backlinks, essentially authoritative websites that are relevant to your website. Your website is better off having fewer quality backlinks than having lots of poor backlinks!
There are tons of ways to build your backlinks. Here are a few:
The easiest place to start building your backlinks is via online directories. Many online directories offer free listings, that’s free backlinks, for businesses. Search engines often rate good directories highly because it’s part of the ‘local search algorithm’. There are five types of online directories you can build from – general directories, business listings, local citations, paid directories and niche directories. You can search Google using a “keyword” inurl:directory to find relevant online directories. To clarify, that keyword can be your industry, city, niche or something else. For example, we’d look for “marketing” inurl:directory.
Not only is guest blogging a great way to backlink to your website, but it can also increase your online reputation, expand your audience, social media following and leverage new relationships. Luckily, you can search on Google to find different websites that accept guest blogging, however, just remember that you’ll want their website/ page to be relevant to your website. If guest blogging is for you, search “guest post” or “guest article” on Twitter to find websites you can potentially guest blog on. To really take advantage of guest blogging, you’ll want to create shareable, interesting content to make the most of the opportunity.
Resource page link building
Another great way to build quality backlinks is through resource pages. Resource page link building features your website on a ‘resource’ page and this process generates a backlink for your website. With this method, you’ll need to find out the email address associated with the resource page and then pitch to them why your website should be listed on their resource page. Not only does your content need to be relevant, but your overall website should be presentable and valuable too. You can search intitle:resources inurl:resources.html “keywords” to find relevant resources. Remember, keywords are specific to your website!
Top tip: start with online directories and then create a backlink building plan!
3# On-page Optimisation can increase your SEO
Perhaps the most important element of SEO is on-page optimisation. If off-page optimisation is SEO that’s outside of your website, then on-page optimisation is all about optimising your website’s pages. The goal here is to improve your search engine rankings and earn organic traffic to your website. On-page SEO covers different elements of your website’s SEO and it’s important to understand that keywords play a huge part in your on-page optimisation. If you’re looking to improve your on-page optimisation, open Excel and start developing a plan!
Improve My SEO with On-page Keywords
Here are some things you’ll need to consider…
- Using your keyword in the URL/ slug
- Using your keyword in the title
- Using your keyword in the meta tags
- Using your keyword in headings
- Using your keyword within the content’s body
- Using your keyword in the image – don’t forget the alt text!
An excellent way of uncovering what SEO needs improvement on your website is by conducting an SEO audit. This can be done manually or using an online tool. One of my favourites is SEMrush! You’ll discover your SEO score and most importantly, what changes need to be made. While a large part of on-page optimisation is keywords and how you use them on the different elements of your page, it’s also about content, media, page speed, internal linking, mobile-friendliness, etc. Some of which an online tool can’t tell you. So, ask yourself, is the content relevant, detailed, useful or engaging? Is the image good quality and relevant to my content? Is the media affecting my page speed?
Top tip: Use different keywords on different pages on your website. If you use the same keywords, you may find yourself in a pickle and cause keyword cannibalisation on your website.
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If you’re a small business struggling with search engine ranking or organic traffic, we can help you build your SEO. Contact our team and we’ll develop an SEO strategy for your specific business. We can also help with other areas of marketing if you need extra help.