The term “search engine optimization” is enough to confound even the most established small business owner. We know that it is an important part of online marketing and that, if it’s not done right, our websites will be shunned by Google. What we are not sure about is how to use SEO to our advantage and see better rankings for our efforts.
Google uses an algorithm that helps it determine where websites should be ranked. That formula is always evolving, and no one person has the secret key to figuring it out. However, the core of that formula remains the same: quality content and plenty of it.
You don’t have to be one of the multi-billion dollar companies in order to get your website noticed by Google. Even small businesses can find success on the search giant with the right content strategy.
Keep the good content rolling
What are people looking for when they turn to Google? Answers. Not just answers to questions, but solutions for problems they are having. They are looking for products that help fill a need and services that can help them.
The link between your website, where you have those answers/ solutions/ products/ services, and Google is the content you have published on the Internet.
Your content includes your blog posts, articles you have written online, social media posts and even the information included on your web page.
The important thing is to make sure that your content offers value and that you keep it fresh. Don’t let too much time pass between posts or else the search engines will stop seeing your website as active.
If you don’t feel like your writing skills are strong enough to create a stream of content that will draw in readers, consider hiring a ghostwriter to do it for you. You can find writers that have a lot of experience with SEO and who can match your brand voice.
Don’t overdo the keywords
Not so long ago, content marketers were obsessed with the idea of keywords. It got to the point where a lot of content sounded garbled and didn’t read naturally. That’s because so many people wanted to cram a specific set of keywords into their writing, regardless of how bad the writing actually sounded.
Google has long-since wised up to those tactics and has started ignoring online content that has been “keyword stuffed.” Instead, the search engine looks for content that provides value to the reader, not the robots.
Including keywords is still important, but they don’t have to appear in your content at a proper saturation level. What Google looks for is long-tail keywords. That is, having a natural phrase that includes your keyword plus two or three others.
Social sharing gets a thumbs-up
With the prevalence of social media these days, it is important to note that Google sees sharing on social media as a valuable factor in page rank. The more your content is getting shared on sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and especially Google+, the more notice Google is going to pay to your website.
Make sure that you are sharing your new blog posts through your social networks. Make them appealing to your followers so that they will also share your content. Before you know it, you could have a piece of content that has gone viral!
There is no magic formula for improving your ranking. If you want to see an improvement in your page rank, you have to satisfy Google. The only way to truly do that is to offer people content that they will find valuable.
How do you stay on top of creating valuable content?