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Though developing a good SEO strategy might be challenging, making it work for you can be not so easy as well. However, it is impossible to ignore this area if you are running a business online. To make it easier for you to figure out how SEO works, we have collected the best SEO tips for beginners that can also be helpful for experienced users in this article.

Above top desk of SME talking about an SEO strategy.

What Is SEO? Basics And Aims

Search engine optimization is an integral part of digital marketing as it helps entrepreneurs and customers find each other. It doesn’t matter how perfect your content is; it will be useless if people cannot find it. In simple words, SEO helps you make your content visible online and helps your target audience discover this content.

SEO is especially important today as there are tons of articles, pictures, and videos on the web, and users need to look for valuable information from all this content. Search systems learn ranking information, and SEO techniques can help you raise your content in search results.

Knowing some of the parameters that influence the content ranking, you can optimize any of your materials, whether these are texts, images, or videos, so that more users can see them. Thus, you can drive traffic to your website, get new subscribers on social media, and attract attention to your brand in common.

Man holding up card that says "what make you unique"?

However, there are several basic rules for you to follow so that your SEO strategy can be most efficient and work for your business.

Using Search Engine Optimization Technique Correctly

The following rules are basic, but even if you are an experienced SEO specialist, you may find this list helpful as it can work for you as a checklist. So whether you have some problems with SEO or just overview your website sometimes, these points are worth considering.

Consider How Google Ranks Websites

Though the details of the algorithm of Google are not known, there are some criteria that have an impact on the ranking. The main one is keywords, for sure. But, besides that, Google considers the authority, trust, and relevancy of the content compared to the content on other websites.

Also, there are such criteria as the website loading speed, the length of the article (Google prefers longer ones), and visual content on the page. As a result, Google is more likely to place pages with videos and graphics among top results.

Algorithm written in letters.

Define Your Target Audience

You need to know your audience to optimize your content for this audience. What is important here? Different people use different words to speak and to search for information. Moreover, if some people prefer texts, others are more likely to watch a video.

The best idea would be to learn your “ideal customer” and use this information in the development of your SEO strategy.

Choose Relevant Keywords

Keywords are crucial for an SEO strategy as they are the primary tool for users to search, and you optimize the information. Therefore, the lack or even bad choice of keywords can fail the entire SEO strategy.

Choosing the right words is not only about knowing your audience. It is also about analyzing the most popular search inquiries and picking those keywords that are relevant for your sphere and used most frequently. For this purpose, you can use such a tool as Google Trends; it can help you monitor search inquiries and define the most suitable for your niche keywords.

Keyword Research posted on a board.

Optimize Your Website For All Devices

Mobility is crucial for many people today; a lot of users prefer to use their phones to search for information. That is why you need to double-check whether your website is compatible with a phone screen. The information should be clearly visible, and all the actions should be available for the mobile version of the website.

Otherwise, you can be at risk as the competition is high, and most companies prefer to improve customer experience to attract more clients and keep existing ones.

Make Sure Your Content Is Valuable

SEO is not only about techniques and tricks. The human factor plays a significant role, people just need some information, and you should give them what they want to attract them. Users are more likely to spend some time on your website or subscribe to your social media if they find something that can help them solve their problems.

This can be an answer to a question, an instruction on fixing something, or just some funny videos for people to relax. If users find your content somehow valuable, they will probably join your community.

Writing valuable content on laptop.

Why Isn’t Your SEO Strategy Working?

Even if you know all the rules, there is still a risk that your strategy will not work because of an oversight or just the lack of experience. So what are the most popular mistakes?

The Lack Of Optimization

Probably, this is the most obvious mistake. We can say that content isn’t optimized if there are not enough keywords in the text, if the text itself is not formatted, and if there are no images and descriptions.

Solution: Check the text; it should include each of your main keywords at least once. Check meta title, meta description, and H1 if they contain keywords. If your text doesn’t have illustrations, consider adding some images and videos to make the text more exciting. To create such content, you can use various free tools like Canva or GraphicSprings for creating static illustrations and Fastreel Video Editor or Lumen5 for creating videos. These tools are available for free and don’t require any special photo or video editing skills.

Working on an SEO strategy in the office.

The Excess Of Optimization

The opposite problem can appear if your content is over-optimized. For example, if the text is overloaded with keywords or illustrations, it might be challenging for users to look through it. Though optimization is necessary, content still has to look and sound natural.

Solution: To make sure your text is readable and clearly understandable, read it out loud. This method can help you detect whether there are extra keywords. Remember that it is enough to use each of them one time.

Not Enough Inbound Links

Link building is one more criterion for the Google algorithm, so you need to earn high-value links for Google to rank your website. If you don’t have inbound links at all or have very few of them, your SEO strategy might fail because Google considers your content not trustworthy enough.

Solution: Of course, the best way is to create high-quality content that will earn links naturally. However, it might be challenging if you are at the very start, so it is worth thinking about collaborations and buying links. But if you choose this variant, remember that links should be from authoritative websites so that you don’t get a result described in the next section.

Inbound marketing words. Part of an SEO Strategy.

Too Many Links

This problem can occur with internal and external links. Internal links that are used for the navigation through your website can turn out to be spammy if they are grouped (in the sidebar or footer), and their anchor texts are too detailed and look like descriptions. As for external links, these are usually bought links with exact match anchor texts; the excess of them can negatively impact your SEO strategy also.

Solution: For internal links, you should better choose short anchors that are just enough for a user to understand what the page is about. Also, try not to group many internal links in one section of your website. For external links, avoid buying too many of them, especially from questionable websites. Finally, remember that natural link building can work much better for your website.

You Ignore User Experience

This point concerns several details that make it comfortable or uncomfortable for users to interact with your website:

  • The time your website takes to load.
  • The convenience of the navigation and design.
  • The readability of texts.
  • And other moments that can influence a user’s impression of your website.

If something of these is poor, people will not spend much time on the website, and Google will take it into account.

User Experience blocks

Solution: It can be a good practice to run your website as a customer sometimes. You can use different devices for it and try to evaluate the website and figure out whether there are some issues to fix. Another excellent idea is to add a feedback form to the website and ask customers to share their opinions.

Conclusion

As you can see, SEO strategy in common focuses on making the content easy to find and easy to perceive for the audience. Though it may seem complicated, our checklists of main rules and most popular mistakes can help you bring your SEO to a new level.

Categories:  St. Louis SEO

About the Author

James McMinn

Senior Digital Strategist

James is a savvy digital marketing specialist with a Masters of Science in Internet Marketing. For the past fourteen years, he has been specializing in SEO, PPC & Marketing Strategy. He has a super sharp analytical mind and a finely tuned creative eye for marketing initiatives that optimize brands.

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