If you want to grow your website’s traffic, organic SEO should be a key component of your strategy.
PPC might be part of your overall quest to get impressions. However, PPC is expensive, time-consuming, and less likely to generate long-term customer relationships. Your business will thrive when you prioritize effective SEO in combination with other tactics.
SEO involves observing and tweaking several interdependent factors and at first, can seem daunting. Fortunately, applying a few key tools and actions can move the needle within a few months. These actions go hand in hand with creating an exceptional customer experience; SEO will help you serve your clients better overall. The result: more loyalty, sales, satisfaction, and profit.
Yes, you can hire an SEO specialist or firm. But it is also a good idea to go through the steps yourself to get a handle on how the process works. At the very least, it’ll improve your customer relationships. Who knows — you might decide to DIY after all!
To make it easier and more straightforward, here are eight measurable tips to grow your website’s organic impressions.
1. Research Your Customers
Keep in mind that human beings are searching, and search engines are simply the tool. It is vital to get inside the motivations and needs of your website visitors to become proficient in SEO.
True, all of the usual demographic indicators are important, but the most crucial thing is having a deep understanding of the desires and pain points of your potential customers.
Keyword research is an integral part of finding out about your customers (see below). It is also vital to find out where your people hang out online. Take a deep dive into niche-specific forums and Facebook groups, and don’t forget to look at resources like Quora and Reddit. How might you address questions and priorities?
2. Study Your Competitors
This step can be a fascinating and enjoyable part of the SEO process. You’ll learn a great deal by investigating close competitors and businesses that function where you aspire to be.
Study the structure of their websites, keywords, and what makes them stand out. Take a look at their rankings on SERP pages, and include commonly-used search engines in addition to Google (like DuckDuckGo). Examine and take note of their blog categories and level of engagement, and use a tool like CheckPageRank to find out where most of their traffic goes.
The process of studying your competitors will provide inspiration for your originality, help you gain insight into the tastes of your target audience, and give you a framework for setting your SEO goals for long-term organic growth.
3. Get Cozy with Data
“Analytics” seems like an intimidating word, but it doesn’t have to be. First, consider its importance.
If you don’t have a keen awareness of your metrics, you won’t know what to optimize. Logical, right? Fortunately, you don’t have to crunch the numbers by yourself. Google Analytics and Search Console can get you started. Bing Webmaster Tools is helpful, too. All you have to do is install and connect them to your site; they take care of importing and analyzing the data.
When you examine the data, look at bounce rates, landing page reports, internal site searches, and overall organic traffic. To streamline the process, check out resources like Google Webmaster Tools, Yoast, and Ahrefs, and set up Google Analytics to send key metrics to your inbox.
4. Get Acquainted with Your Keywords
After getting to know your customers and competitors, it is time to start making lists of keywords.
This is a dynamic document; your keywords will change over time. Think of it as a creative as well as a technical process. It gives you valuable information about the most popular searches your target audience is making.
Not sure where to begin? Here are some ideas.
- Remember those online communities? Search and see what you find.
- Think in terms of questions. A tool like Answer the Public can help.
- Google’s autocompleting feature will give you ideas quickly.
- Try KWFinder to tease out low-competition keywords.
- Google Ads and Google’s Keyword Planner will help you find common keywords.
The idea is to find a balance between competition and demand when you select your keywords. A lower level of competition will help your organic visibility, but the keyword still has to have value. Be sure to select a good mix of short- and long-tail keywords, too.
5. Get Ready to Optimize
Every single page of your website needs to be optimized. It is a challenging proposition, but once you get the hang of it you’ll notice that the process increases the coherence of your online presence. Your efforts will improve your customers’ experience.
The more obvious adjustments include optimizing your images, creating URLs that are short and user-friendly, building pages that are responsive and well-designed, external linking to blog content, and internal linking to other pages and content.
More specific adjustments include correctly using keywords in H1, H2, and H3 tags, creating alt text for every image, constructing titles with main keywords for each page, generating strong titles and meta descriptions, and using secondary keywords in blog content and descriptions.
Keep in mind: Keyword stuffing is not the way to go. A real person is reading the copy on your site — not a machine. The keywords need to be in the correct context and make sense. If you are DIY-ing your SEO, make checklists to keep yourself on track.
6. Get Ready to Audit
The idea of auditing might remind you of what you don’t want to happen around tax time, but in this case, think of it as constructive investigation.
Auditing helps you figure out where you stand, technically speaking. It involves checking the speed of your pages and site, taking a closer look at Google’s evaluation of your pages, and addressing underlying problems.
Google’s URL Inspection Tool can oversee your audit. It is a comprehensive and powerful resource that quickly shows you several issues and errors. Aspects like mobile-friendliness, AMP errors, crawling patterns, index coverage status, sitemaps, ease of page fetch, referring pages, and more are what you’ll discover.
Additionally, the Inspection Tool looks for HTTPS, broken links, and duplicate meta descriptions/content.
7. Create Your Content for Long-Term Organic Growth
The amount and quality of your blog content will make a big difference in the number of your organic impressions.
Blog content also can work in synergy with your off-site marketing strategies and is a way to build authority in your particular niche. Don’t neglect this important aspect. Having a dynamic blog is one of the most potent ways to drive conversions of all types.
Do you have old content on your current blog? Repurpose it to boost your SEO. It is one way to make the writing job less intimidating. Before long, you’ll hit your stride and come up with more original ideas to serve your customers and improve ROI.
Decide on your blog strategy by brainstorming topics, and develop a workable schedule so you can post as regularly as possible. Avoid posting filler material. Posting once a week is ideal, but your main goal should be consistency.
Make your blog posts appealing, well-structured, and informative. Provide enough detailed information so your visitors don’t bounce away to search for related content.
Mix up your content types to keep your readers engaged. Include video and compelling images. Original, high-quality photography is preferable to stock photography.
8. Build Your Links
Having quality backlinks is a key part of successful SEO. It takes some effort; in fact, many business owners consider it too time-consuming and complex to attempt.
Building backlinks isn’t as difficult as it seems, it just involves moving out of your comfort zone. Google includes backlinks in its top 3 search ranking factors, so it is well worth your time and energy to create them.
Chances are, you already have some backlinks. Your services or products might be on blogs, review sites, or online forums. Here are a few tips to garner backlinks:
- Form relationships with related businesses, and offer to guest blog on their sites. You’ll provide value to them with your niche expertise.
- Similarly, maintain authentic relationships with influencers who are simpatico. Make your original content so compelling that they are more likely to mention you back.
- This seems obvious but bears repeating: Be sure you link to your social media platforms and accounts and be active and engaging.
- Search for podcasts that relate to your niche. Engage sincerely for a reasonable amount of time, then approach the host for a possible interview.
- Wondering about the link sources from your close competitors? Use a tool like Link Explorer to find out.
The Bottom Line: Growing your site’s organic impressions
Prioritizing SEO means prioritizing the overall vitality of your enterprise. Although the results of your efforts will show up gradually, increased organic impressions will make a significant difference in your visibility.
As time goes on, you’ll receive valuable analytic feedback and can tweak as you go along. In the meantime, you are building a solid foundation for success.
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My name is Leanna Todd, and I have been working in the Digital Marketing industry for more than 15 years. I have always loved sharing the insights that I have discovered throughout my career with other marketing enthusiasts.