Welcome to this week’s episode of the online marketing series for beginners! Remember how we were talking about content marketing and how important it is to share valuable content with your audience? Well, today we’re going to analyze one of the major goals of content marketing: Search Engine Optimization, or SEO. We’re also going to find out how SEO combines with the rest of the online marketing tools we’ve seen so far. Now, before we start with this very basic lesson about SEO, make sure you’ve read the last episode about content marketing. Ready? OK, let’s start then!
So, if you’re kind of freaking out because you think “search engine optimization” sounds too techie, don’t worry because it’s not. SEO is all about ranking high in search engines. Now, let me explain what that means in plain language:
Imagine you have a website or an online shop. You’ll most likely want people to find your website on the Internet, right? Well, there are two main ways for you to be found:
- Paid advertising
- Social media, which is probably the first thing that came up to your mind. We’ll be talking about social media in later episodes, so let’s forget about it until then.
- SEO, which is the tool that lets your website appear in the (hopefully) first positions of the search engine results page.
So, if you’re selling online yoga classes, you’ll have to figure out what your potential students would type on Google (or any other search engine, like Bing or Yahoo!) to find you. “Yoga classes” would be the first couple of words you’d come up with, right? But how are you going to stand out from all other yoga classes out there? Are you going to offer yoga classes for pregnant women, for people living in London or for elderly seniors? Once you’ve figured that out, you’ll be able to have to level up your SEO game!
How Do I Get My Website Found On Google?
Apart from paid advertising (which we aren’t covering here), there are two types of SEO methods that we have to take into account:
1. Onsite SEO
Onsite SEO is anything you can do directly on your website to improve its ranking. For instance:
- First of all, SEO relies on good content. If you remember the last episode on content marketing, updating and publishing new info to your site on a regular basis is the best method to get discovered by most search engines.
- Feel free to download this content brainstorming sheet if you struggle with coming up with ideas for your blog posts. I hope you find it useful!
- Secondly, that you can be found by Google doesn’t automatically mean that you’re going to be attracting tons of visitors. You may not be using the same wording (or keywords) they use to search for a topic. So you’ll have to figure out what words someone would use to find your products or services.
- Another onsite SEO technique you can use is your website usability. We already talked about it in the episode on websites of this online marketing series for beginners, remember? Make sure that your site structure is clear both to the users and to the search engines.
2. Offsite SEO
As you can imagine, offsite SEO is exactly the opposite of onsite SEO: It’s about everything that you can do outside of your site to direct visitors to it. For instance:
- Placing links to your website on other people’s sites or blogs. Be careful not to place them anywhere – You could get banished by Google! So make sure that your links are placed on trustworthy sites that offer related content to yours. The more important that site is, the more valuable that link will be for you.
- Social media is a powerful (and free!) tool to direct people to your website, so this is probably the first step you should take in terms of offsite SEO.
- Guest posting is another powerful tool to make yourself known outside of your website. It’s a bit harder in the sense that you have to make the necessary connections to be accepted in another blog or website to get your content published. However, being able to have a different speaking platform than yours can make yourself known to audiences you wouldn’t have reached otherwise.
Recap – How Can Your Site Gain More Visibility?
Let’s have a look at the steps you should follow to get your site optimized for search engines:
- Update and publish new content for your website on a regular basis.
- Share your content on relevant websites, social media and per email with links to your site.
- Publish your own content on other people’s websites or blogs.
And that would be all for today! If you have any questions, feel free to contact me or to leave your comments below! In the meantime, stay tuned for