Let’s face it. SEO is confusing.
Even if you know that the acronym SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, you are still wading the shallow end in terms of knowing what to do.
If you are a business owner, you probably have a ‘do it yourself’ attitude. While this is good in some areas of your business, not having a clear SEO strategy and understanding can be dangerous. A ready-fire-aim approach to SEO can cause more harm than help. It is important to clarify your thinking first before you begin trying to anything to do with improving your search engine results.
Before you even begin, here are five essential questions to answer for yourself:
1) Can you keep up with ever-changing results?
SEO algorithms change, and the results of SEO rankings change daily. This is a reality of modern business and something you are willing to stay on top of.
The idea of being constantly number one on google for your product or service is nice, but it can be a bit of a pipe dream. Every day something updates or changes.
You’ll need to understand your target market and the keywords they use to ensure you stay relevant. This will help you to better navigate the changes that are part of excelling at SEO in your business.
2) How much time can you devote?
Next is to think through your timeline to create SEO success. Do you have only an hour a week to devote to it? Can you commit to the 3 to 6 months to see any results?
One problem a lot of companies have when trying to improve their search rankings is that it takes longer than you expect to see tangible results. Much like working out in the gym, the secret is consistency and patience. Both of these take time, and you need to be clear how much time and attention you can commit to your search engine optimization success.
3) Who is going to monitor the rankings?
Once you have some clear goals and are willing to commit time, you need to know who in your business is going to take on the role of monitoring and improving your Search engine results. You need to consider if they have the experience and knowledge to do so. If someone has read a few articles, attended a course, or has some training that could be a good start. But can they create tangible improvements in your page rankings?
You might need to hire somebody in part-time or look at an actual SEO agency to get you started. The investment is typically worth the return.
4) Do you understand the key terms?
The industry of search engine optimization is a haystack of mysterious terms.
Words like Headings, HTML, Index, Link Building, Metadata, Pagerank, etc. can seem like gibberish if you’ve never heard them before. But they are critical to your success.
A great place to start learning about this is with an SEO glossary. From there, you can ask SEO experts in your local area. It will likely take you a year or more to truly understand the intricacies of SEO, and to be able to make a change in your rankings.
5) How will you know you are getting results?
Simply googling yourself is not a great strategy when it comes to knowing your SEO results are successful. You need to have tools, such as google analytics in place to help you better read.
You need campaign metrics, and to watch the trends over time. Consider results such as bounce rate, conversation rate, keyword rankings and organic search traffic. These are a good start, and again, a local SEO agency will able to track these for you most effectively.
It’s not easy, but it’s possible
Bottom line: anything you put your mind to, you can achieve. We all start at zero and progress from there. So too will your knowledge and skills with SEO. So if you’re serious and ready to see a jump in your online presence, then now is the time to get started.