SEO Do’s and SEO Don’ts
I’m going to dispel a myth; you don’t have to be a SEO expert or “SEO Guru” to make your website rank highly on Google, or any other Search Engine for that matter. Search Engine Optimization, or SEO, is not as complicated as some “SEO guru’s” or “SEO Practitioners” may tell you.
There is no magic coding techniques, no special scientific methods some company’s know, and others don’t, it is not a black art, unless you engage in an untrustworthy company. It may be exhausting and annoying and you may even get a little frustrated at times. But, if you know and apply the basic rules, it can be rewarding and extremely beneficial for your business.
It won’t happen overnight or possibly even in a few months, but persistence pays off when it comes to SEO. What follows is some SEO do’s, and don’ts I have learned throughout my time as a Digital Business Strategist.
Some SEO Do’s:
- Keep it as Natural as Possible – Search Engines like natural website behaviour. So, whenever you get a tempting proposal to pay for some miracle software to boost search engine rankings, remember there is NO miracle cures, no, “Snake Oil” so to speak.
- Design your website for your client first and always first. Make it user friendly, easy to navigate, and update your content as regularly as possible. Implementing a Word press Blog is a great way to do this because you update your website with fresh content. What this does is it tells the Search Engine Bots who index your site that you are providing your potential customers with fresh, relevant, and up to date content. When you put up content, try to tie the content in with the keywords you want to rank for. This does not mean spamming your content with constant keyword repetition.Remember, if you design your website purely for SEO and don’t keep conversions and your clients in mind, even if you get traffic to your website, it won’t convert high enough, and you may end up having to start from scratch.
- On-Page SEO and site optimization – It is known and it is law – Google Tweaks there Bots to look at websites with human eyes, as much as possible anyway. Matt Cutts, who is Google’s Lead Developer, has said Google will make as many as 350 – 400 tweaks to their algorithms a year. Optimize your website according to the most valuable keywords first, and then work back from there. There are lots of free Keyword Research Tools out there, so make use of them when conducting your keyword research, and design the website in accordance yet with the client at the front of your mind.
- Links, Links, Links – The online world equivalent to: “Location, location, location”. Links are the foundation stones of any Search Engine Optimisation strategy. This by no means should mean that you go and source links from a one page bakery website in Iceland. Instead, focus more on the Quality of your links, then the overall quantity. Overall however, the quality and the overall quantity of the links are your main criteria you should focus your time and resources towards as it is the main criteria for rankings. Constantly research ways to ascertain links and utilise techniques like link exchanging, article submissions, affiliate marketing, link buying and so on. The web is an endless source of resources so there is no excuse not to be researching new ways to acquire links.
- Automate and Delegate – It can be quite time consuming if you try to do this all on your own, especially if you are running a business – There is software out there that can automate the process for you and you can always outsource some of your search engine optimisation to other respectable company’s. Always research a company before engaging them in SEO. Remember those companies that cold called you with the miracle SEO techniques no one else has?
- Research, Research, Research – The web is endless amounts of knowledge and research put in by people over time. There is no excuse for not thoroughly conducting your research prior to starting SEO and keeping up to date on the latest and greatest. I recommend keeping the research going about once a month, at the least!
Some SEO Don’ts:
- Do not shoot and then forget after a month – SEO is an ongoing task. You won’t see amazing results in a week, or even in a month. Work on a gradual website building strategy. It is like going to the gym. You don’t go to the gym and go ridiculously hard for one month and then stop. You take your time, and gradually build up to your goals by setting out a plan and steps to get there and building on what you have already accomplished. The same applies with SEO, set a building plan on your site via Blog Posts, Page Additions and Link Building. This will manoeuvre you closer and closer to those first page results.Do not optimise your website solely for Google –
- Google is not the only search engine there is. Yahoo and Bing also hold down there share of the market. Work to get your website across all those search engines, or the most relevant search engines based on your location. This will also tie into your research that you conduct.
- Don’t set up your website solely for Ranking Purposes – I touched on this a few times, but it is important so I am going to hammer it home. Set up your website for users first, search engines second. Remember what your goal is, which is always conversions of some sort. Make sure your website is conversion friendly.
- Do not rest Solely on SEO for Online Marketing – There are a number of other ways to generate traffic and drive conversions through your website. Pay Per Click or Google AdWords is a great way to generate traffic and conversions, and if you utilise tools like conversion tracking, you can actually ascertain the top converting keywords for your website, which you can then feed towards your SEO strategy.
- Do Not Engage a company with the “Miracle SEO Tactic” – As you can see, there is no miracle cure, and no one company has the miracle cure. When engaging a company to assist with your SEO, look at their track record and the consultant you are dealing with track record as well. If you here things like “we guarantee top place rankings or you don’t pay” , that should ring alarm bells, as Google Will state in their own Guidelines to be wary of SEO providers who offer Guarantees. The reason is those 350 – 400 tweaks. If Google, for instance is making that many tweaks to their algorithms, how can any one company guarantee what they don’t know?
Now, you have the major Do’s and Don’ts, you are ready to get started. Remember, it may not happen overnight, but the rewards are more than beneficial for your business and can give the edge over your competitors. Good Luck!!