If you own a business, search engine optimization (SEO) should be your best friend. If used correctly, SEO works like a magical tool that makes your website more visible on a search engine’s results page. With a successful SEO strategy, a company’s website could be at the top of the list on a Google search page, increasing the overall traffic and attracting potential customers. SEO is a critical component of marketing and knowing the basics will be undoubtedly beneficial for business owners and marketing strategists alike.
In this introductory guide, we’ll be sharing some basic SEO strategies and how to incorporate them to get the most out of your marketing efforts.
Focus on keywords that match the intent of your customers
Optimizing your website starts with knowing what your customers are actually searching for. Think about certain keywords that are associated with your brand, products, or services, and how customers would search for those queries in a search engine. Be sure to include those keywords throughout your website, but don’t go overboard! In fact, doing so could actually harm your SEO, since many search engines consider this to be “keyword stuffing.”
Search engines like Google recognize when you attempt to stuff as many keywords as possible into your content. Since this approach comes at the expense of providing educational or valuable material for your audience, it is widely condemned by search engines, and the activity could lead to a search penalty that removes your page from search engine results pages (SERPs) altogether.
Where and how to use keywords in your content
As a general rule of thumb, you should try to include keywords in:
- Page titles
Optimizing page titles is a critical component of SEO and is a good starting point when using keywords. If you have a lengthy headline, try to get your keyword in the beginning so it won’t get cut off on the search results. This will increase your post’s perceived relevancy and help to drive traffic towards your website.
- Headers and body
Include keywords in a way that does not seem forced or unnatural throughout the body of your post and in the headers. However, keep in mind the main goal of writing content should be creating relevant and interesting material for your readers. Always aim to create meaningful posts that answer questions, solve problems, and provide clarity about topics of interest. Don’t just focus on including as many keywords or keyword phrases as possible!
The best URLs should give visitors and search engines an understanding of what’s on the page. As such, it’s important to include keywords in the URL. Keep your URLs short, relevant, and in a way that makes sense to people who are visiting.
- Meta description
A meta description is a short snippet used to summarize a webpage’s content. Search engines use these descriptions in search results to let visitors know what a page is about before they click on it. Include keywords and keyword phrases in the beginning of your meta description— but keep it short and engaging!
- Directories and external listings
Another great place to include keywords is through external business listings. If you’re setting up a Google My Business profile, it can be very helpful for your organization to include SEO keywords in the description.
Make your website mobile-friendly
Having a mobile-friendly website is extremely valuable for SEO purposes. Since many of us are glued to our phones, they’re the first devices we turn to when we have a pressing question. Did you know search engines like Google prioritize mobile-friendly results first? By investing in a responsive mobile design, search engines will recognize your post’s value and rank it accordingly.
When you’re including internal links to other pages on your website, they can boost your SEO and establish a hierarchy on your site. This particular strategy allows businesses to guide search engines and visitors to the more important pages of their website.
Update and publish content consistently
To improve your SEO, you should be updating your website quite frequently. Google loves fresh content— content that is published recently gets a higher ranking, especially for hot and trending topics. This includes publishing new content as well as updating older sections of your website. This is a great way to increase traffic and is guaranteed to make a huge improvement in how well your content ranks.
Now that you know the basics of SEO, you can leverage these strategies to help drive more relevant traffic, leads, and sales. Once you have identified the goals and intentions of your target audience, it’s a good idea to produce relevant content that reflects those ideas.
If you’re struggling with online exposure and engagement, InMarket has the tools and experience to optimize your digital presence. Contact us for more information about SEO and how we can help your business get started!