SEO in 2 Simple Terms for Beginners and Dummies
by Homerun Nievera | Many times, I have been by clients on what SEO really means. The easy answer is contained in its three letters mainly – Search Engine Optimization. Looking at the words closely, you might skip the Search Engine part knowing we’re referring to Google (at least!), then move on to they keyword which is Optimization. So, there you go. This brief explainer article will go through only two simple terms that are primarily important to SEO – Onsite and Offsite Optimization.
Let’s go through them quickly:
#1 Onsite Optimization
At the end of the day, all traffic should lead to your website or landing page. Whatever transaction you’d want your audience to do on your site, whether it’s to view or buy, you’ve got to lead them there in the first place, right? So, the first thing to do is make sure that your website or landing page is optimized enough for a search engine to rank your site on the first 3 pages when they type in some keywords.
Onsite Optimization is in fact the easier part of doing SEO. In simple terms, all you need to do is to fix your site’s structure to be able to do 2 simple things:
- Create an easy-to-navigate user experience, and
- Have keywords or phrases that people usually look for be embedded on your site
Thus, have a well-designed website first and foremost. I am particular to WordPress as a content managements system because of its ease of use, security, searchability and popularity — but you can use any CMS out there.
Make sure that you have logically lined-up menu with not more than 7 tabs. Your menu can be drop-down anyway so just make sure that the tabs or categories are simple terms or words as well.
To have strong content, do keyword research first. Use Google’s own ad planner tool found here. Plan out your content based on what is usually searched by your target visitors. Have a blog section so you can create more focused content. Of course, you’d think that this part might wear you down. Don’t worry, there are a number of content marketers and content providers or creators who can help you with that bit. But first, plan out your site.
Remember that if your website is built for e-commerce, all the photos, products and descriptions (per SKU!) should line-up SEO-wise. Most content management systems have built-in boxes that allow the likes of tags and other useful stuff.
Google is your friend. Make sure you have a Google account to access all the tools that you need to be crawled by its algorithm (which changes regularly). Take note of the Google Search Console and have Google Analytics installed in your site.
If you think that planning out your site will be a challenge, make sure to consult with web developers or designers who know about SEO. This is critical because they are supposed to make your site SEO-centric.
#2 Offsite Optimization
After establishing the SEO structure of your website or landing page, it’s now time to plan out your Offsite Optimization strategy. The term “offsite” is as direct it can be. Any tactic that doesn’t use your website or landing page is considered as offsite, plain and simple.
The key strategy here is riding on the coattails of sites that rank high and be mentioned by them, together with a backlink. Next is spreading the word across various search engines, social media, and all types of sites that share content. That is a lot!
Candidly, if you’re in a hurry, this is where you get help from providers – mostly content marketers and creators. Also, tap a steady network of blogs and relevant sites who help you get the word out. In the traditional media world, they’d get PR firms to spread the word. In digital media, you’ve got to use digital PR firms and a bunch of content blog networks to get those backlinks out pronto!
Should you go for D-I-Y in terms of signing up SEO friendly and top-ranked blogs, look for the Domain Authority (DA) of each and make sure they’re at least 20 points and up. The lowest you could consider would probably be 15 points. Get the DA analyzer from MOZ. Another tool you’d love to have is SEMrush. Check out these tools, ok?
To cap this briefer, make sure your site or landing page is mobile-friendly. This means that it’s pretty much responsive to mobile smartphones. With search growth coming from mobile devices as a global trend, you know how important this is. Consult a web designer on this one. You can also download newer versions of WordPress themes that are already mobile responsive.
I’m leaving you off with 2 ebooks from MOZ and SEMrush that are great reading materials for beginners.
Check them out below and I hope I was able to get the message to you on 2 simple terms to understand SEO.
The Author: Homer Nievera, CDE is a digital marketing trainer and conducts seminars and consults on SEO, content marketing and full-scale digital marketing. His company owns and manages a content network of 30+ blogs. He is the chief executive of Mediablast Digital and the division chief of Top Rank SEO Philippines, which provides websites Google top rank search engine optimization services from it’s Philippines HQ.
Take time to watch these 3 videos as well for further understanding of the topic:
SEO FOR BEGINNERS WITH A NEW WEBSITE
HOW TO LEARN SEO (NEIL PATEL)
20 SEO TIPS FOR BEGINNERS 2018