Search engine optimization (SEO) is an essential part of your online presence. It helps improve your website’s search result rankings, so potential customers looking for the services and products you offer can easily find you online.
Search engines bring content and consumers together by providing relevant links in response to the user’s search query. They use complicated algorithms to help determine and rank applicable online sources that closely match the words a user inputs into the search engine website. Webpages robust with topical keywords will rank higher when those keywords are used in a search. However, search engines penalize websites that provide content that is rife with repetitive words without meaning (a practice known as keyword stuffing).
The first step in search optimization is researching and including applicable high-ranking keywords that are directly related to your products and services within your website’s content. The trick is to ensure they flow seamlessly throughout the website text. Google provides a free tool, Google AdWords Keyword Planner, which can help you determine the average monthly search results for a particular keyword. The more difficult part is establishing which keywords are most relevant to your business. Improving your website’s metadata and taxonomy, and optimizing links, titles and URL names are also important steps to take to help improve your website’s search engine rankings.
Content marketing is the second step to improving SEO results. This takes the form of adding relevant, useful and unique information to your website in the hopes that consumers will want to read and share it. Buying guides, how-to articles and subject matter blogs are great examples of SEO-enhanced content marketing. Content should be enriched with applicable keywords that flow organically within the text, which will help improve search engine results. The ideas and tone shouldn’t be a sales pitch, rather content should focus on providing readers with valuable information that helps them solve a problem or answer a question. Another content marketing strategy that helps improve SEO results is social media. It provides additional channels for your content to be found and shared by readers.
The best place to get started with search engine optimization is with a website analysis to determine how well your website currently performs. Then create a SEO strategy to establish the best approach to keyword identification and content generation and use. Your strategy needs to focus on balancing potential results with available resources. It’s important to note that improving SEO takes time, but when done correctly can connect you to new customers while helping to establish relationships and build trust with your current clients.
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