Most business owners are at least somewhat familiar with search engine optimization basics, but many misunderstand how and where SEO should be applied. Certainly, it’s critical any business website be strategically optimized to be found in the search results, but that’s just a beginning. Then, there’s the social networks, and these days it’s extremely important for the social business pages to be created and profiled in such a way to feel similar to the business website. There are many more steps in the process of being found online but we first start with search engine optimization basics to get started on the right foot. There’s much to share and always more to learn but here we’ll provide the information to help get the wheels turning. We encourage all our visitors to read Google’s Getting Started Guide.
First Steps for Optimization Success
- Being found online all starts with the business website. Not only should your website look and feel good to visitors, but it should be mobile friendly, dynamic, fast loading, cleanly coded, and developed in a manner to please search engines and humans alike. We’re not just talking about loading up a good SEO plugin and thinking the job is done! Each page or post should focus on one keyword and contain great on page SEO. Done right, identifying and mapping the right keywords is a time consuming process, but this is basic search optimization and should never be skipped.
- Using your website as the hub, it’s now time to create or edit each of the major social network pages. Always include a link back to your website. Take advantage of whatever profile set up options are allowed and be sure display your brand consistently across all networks. At the very least, your business social pages should appear on Google+, Facebook & Twitter. We almost always recommend LinkedIn as well. It’s important that each profile be written with SEO in mind. There’s more, but these are currently the primary social networks.
- If your business serves the local community you’ll also want to set up profiles in the local listing directories. Chances are, your business is already included in these listings, but most directories allow you to sign up and take at least some control of what is being displayed. Again, always include a link back to your website.
- It’s critical to follow all best practices for search engine optimization. Please, do yourself a favor and never buy backlinks.
Advice for Getting Started
Setting up your website and social pages take time and if done with search engine optimization basics in mind, require planning and strategy. If hiring a firm to do some or all of this work, be sure to do the research necessary and choose wisely. Most offer a free one time consultation and this is a good opportunity for the consultant and the client to determine if they would be a good fit.
There are many less than legitimate SEO consultants out there and we advise all our friends and clients to avoid them like the plaque. We’ve all received those spam notifications trying to talk us into using their magic formula’s and achieve almost instant success. Just remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! There are plenty of experienced, dedicated and qualified SEO consultants available so be sure to talk to trusted associates for referrals. When working with a qualified SEO consultant, trust is built up over time. It’s definitely a team work type of approach and requires cooperation from both sides to achieve success.
Results and Next Steps
Obviously, the goal is to provide optimized web pages and content to help your business be found online. This is an achievable goal but it takes planning, hard work and time. A good SEO consultant can help maximize the results and shorten this process but the business operator must do their part as well. Here at Four Chord Digital Marketing we also offer PPC services which will not only help to achieve fast results but can be used to quickly test keywords and may reduce the amount of time it takes to achieve the optimum organic search results as well. Often, a healthy mix of basic search engine optimization techniques coupled with a dose of paid advertising will achieve both immediate and long term results.
Should you have any questions or would like to learn more about how we can help you get started on the basics and start optimizing for for search engine results send us a note at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Search Engine Optimization Basics Summary
Remember, though others might like you to believe differently, there is no magic formula for good SEO. Please, do not waste your money on those persons or systems claiming to have the magic formula to achieve immediate and overstated results. To achieve good basic search engine optimization for your business just do your homework, plan well and put in the time to get the job of done right.