You don’t have to be an SEO specialist to apply SEO to your website. You have to have it but there is so much to it and you can go crazy trying to figure it all out. There is a secret to SEO success though. You can get great results by adding just the minimum. SEO is different now than ten years ago but still works and can bring a big boost to your website and business. With minimal effort, you can have a great online presence.
There are six simple steps you need to know for online success:
Target the right people: Target the people that are looking for you. When people have heard about you, or previously met you, they will search for your name and not using keywords. Targeting in this way means you may not rank high in the keyword searches but when your name is searched, you will appear at the top of the list. Make sure you know your target audience.
Keyword research: Keywords are important but you don’t need to do extensive research. SEO experts spend time and money analyzing keywords but there is a more simple strategy. Think of possible terms people might use to search for you, and type it into Google to see what comes up. Competitive phrases will bring up numerous results, but when you type keywords that are unique and less competitive, your listing can rank at the top. Look for keywords that nobody else is targeting and use them for your site.
Title tags: Title tags are the titles of your page and they are seen in the browser in the blue area. These tags are one of the most important factors of SEO. The simple approach to title tags is to include one keyword and a couple of descriptive phrases. An example of your homepage could be “XYZ Construction: Specializing in home construction and patio building in Memphis, TN”. for your bio you could then use “XYZ Construction: servicing homeowners in the greater Memphis, TN for 20 years”.
File names: Search engines look at tags as well as file names. You need to optimize file names for pages and images. The best way is to identify a theme for each page. To optimize for people searching for your name, you can name the page XYZ-constructions.html” and a photo can be named “XYZ-construction.jpg”. Keep file names short so as not to dilute their potential and use hyphens. These help to avoid run-on phrases and smashing words together.
Optimize content: Once a title tag and file name is chosen, use it throughout the content. Be careful with using these and do not overdo it. As long as they are used as part of the natural language you can capture your audience’s interest without getting Google’s attention. The best locations to add keywords are the headline, sub-headers, and sprinkled through the copy.
Meta tags: Meta tags are mentioned last because they are good to have but will not help you get a higher ranking. They do affect your traffic, especially when they are carefully crafted. The meta tag is a small description of text that appears below your link when people get the results from a search. Meta tags need to be written for people and not search engines. Think of it as a mini-pitch to bring people to your site so make it interesting and unique. You only get around 150 words, so work to create maximum impact with these few words.
Minimal SEO will not bring you a ton of business but it will give your online presence a boost. There is always more research you can do if you have the time. Books and websites are dedicated to SEO so you can get help and tips anytime you want. If time is limited, then the minimal approach is best and because SEO is so important, even the minimal efforts will pay off.