Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the process of trying to rank more highly on search engines like Google. Organic traffic is great, because it is more trusted and cheaper than advertising. Studies show over 94% of traffic from search engines comes from the first page. And, the first two or three results get the majority of the clicks. This means that it’s critical to show up in the first few results.
How do you actually get this to happen? Well, search engine optimization is a specialty field to which many people dedicate their entire lives. The good news, however, is that most people aren’t optimizing their websites for SEO at all. And that means you can get ahead with a few simple principles.
Here’s 3 basic ways to get your SEO in shape!
1. Determine Your Focus Keyphrase
How to do search engine optimization starts with the goal
The first thing you’ll want to do is find your focus keyphrase. People used to talk about keywords, but “key words” aren’t a huge area of focus for SEO anymore. This is because of keyword spamming. For years, people would jam their websites full of words that were popular. Blogs about beekeeping started to be randomly stuffed with words like “Justin Timberlake” and “furbies”. This meant that people actually searching for Justin Timberlake or furbies would get irrelevant results.
So, Google and other search engines began focusing on key phrases instead—the actual phrases that users are searching for. This led to the concept of the “focus keyphrase”, also called the “focus keyword”. This is a string of words that the user is actually searching.
For instance, this string might be, “how to become a beekeeper” or a question like, “is beekeeping hard?”
You can find focus keyphrases by using a tool like SEMRush or Moz. However, you can also just start typing in the Google URL bar and see what autofills. This is an easy way to find out what people are searching for, because popular text is what gets autofilled.
Once you’ve determined your focus keyphrase, you can begin to optimize your page or post.
2. Optimize your page or post
Optimizing your page or post means placing your focus keyphrase appropriately throughout.
The focus keyphrase should be in your opening paragraph and throughout the page. Don’t spam people with the keyphrase—this will lead to a poor “keyword density” and Google will begin to rank you lower.
Make sure the focus keyphrase is also in the title of your page or post. It should be the very first thing that’s there—then you can add more text after it.
Additionally, make sure that your image ALT tags include your focus keyphrase.
Fill in the metadata (your meta title and meta description) as well.
A great way to make sure everything is optimized is to use Yoast! SEO. This is a plugin for WordPress that’s easy to use. It gives you a red light, yellow light, green light system to let you know what’s the highest priority. Get the most green lights you can!
3. Post new content regularly
It’s important to become a “topical content authority”—that is, an authority on a particular topic. The best way to do this is to regularly add new content.
For instance, if you focus on beekeeping, you should make a post about beekeeping at least once a month. You should NOT use the same focus keyphrase each time. Rather, use a unique focus keyphrase.
Now you know the basics of how to do search engine optimization
By using these techniques, you’ll be able to boost your online SEO significantly. Reach out to us if you have any questions!