Search engine optimization is a tricky, tricky little monster. Ok, it isn’t that little, considering more than hundred factors can go into defining what and how SEO works anyway. For the novices in realm of SEO, this is an acronym for search engine optimization. Now, what the heck does that mean? Go to Google. Type in “corgi jackets”. The results given to you are based off how well they match your search criteria.
And that’s SEO. Well, kind of.
Even though more than a hundred data points exist to optimize (site speed, image resolution, keywords, meta descriptions, etc.) these next three items will help you the most when attempting to navigate SEO.
Write for People. Build for Robots.
SEO takes a while to actually become part of a search engine’s repertoire of results. It used to be you could stuff pages filled with keywords or phrases and BOOM…1st page of Google. Not anymore.
The algorithms used on these search engines read the structure of a page and then read the content on that page. This means, simply laying out your content with a page title, headline title, subheads and copy to fill will do better than a highly stylized webpage. Not only that, but being able to structure your site to be easily read by search bots, i.e. crawl rate frequency, indexing, 404 error redirecting, etc. These are systems or processes needed to ensure content is delivered to people the best way possible.
Now, you have to write about relevant and engaging topics too. You can’t simply stuff keywords in content and expect to be on the front page anymore. Even then, users are going to the second page more now than ever, so first page relevancy (while still incredibly powerful) isn’t the end all be all of SEO. You content needs to be relevant to the user. Period.
Traffic is Key. Diverse Traffic is Better.
One of the other reasons pages show up on the first page is because Google says, “Yeah this is relevant, but the traffic to this site reinforces that relevancy.”
So, always look for opportunities to spread, disseminate and link back to your site. Are there partner sites where you generate content with peers? (Go visit ActiveRain). Are there email campaigns you could create to generate more connections with your audience? Can you replicate your content on social channels and share with your friends or followers? Don’t look to use one source to drive and connect with audiences. It limits your reach and SEO really likes to see you connecting with audiences across multiple channels. Because…
Social is Part SEO Now
Posting on your social channels is now measured by SEO. The more active you are on your social channels, the better your SEO will be. Also, SEO uses social channels to validate your address, and since locality is becoming an extremely important factor for SEO, you need social. But don’t just pump out messaging. Engage with your users. Comment on their comments. Reply to direct messages but also any mentions or questions. SEO wants to see that a person is behind those channels, not just a scheduling application. So, use these three key initiatives to begin your foray into the wonderful world of SEO.