SEO Basics Every Business Owner Should Know

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  • 61% of digital marketing experts say improving SEO and expanding their online presence is their top priority.
  • Organic SEO is about 6 times more effective than paid search ads.
  • 52% of web traffic comes from mobile devices.

One of the most effective ways to market your business online is by having a stellar website. But how do you make sure that your potential customers browsing online find all the awesome content you have to offer? Through a digital marketing tactic called search engine optimization (SEO).

It’s the ultimate way to increase visibility and searchability, as well as gain unique visitors organically to your site. That’s why it’s crucial for business owners to get a handle on just a few key SEO basics in order to maximize their brand online.

What is SEO?

Tactics in on-page and off-page SEO allow you to increase the number of users visiting your site and improve your rankings on search engines, like Google, Safari, and Bing. They employ search engine crawlers that collect information from websites, so they can measure their navigability, credibility, and relevance for user search inquiries.

What is search engine optimization?

The most relevant web pages will end up on the first page of the search engine results page (SERP). But the truth is, most people stop reading (and clicking) after the first five listings. This is part of the reason why SEO is so important for gaining quality user traffic organically—meaning not through a paid advertisement like a Google or Facebook ad.

Here are a few more reasons why you need to start implementing some SEO basics into your digital marketing plan.

Why is SEO So Important?

There are quite a few perks to a dynamic SEO strategy. These are the biggest ones:

Establishing Your Authority and Credibility

Websites that gain a high and consistent level of user traffic—and multiple high-level rankings on SERPs—signal to search engine crawlers that you are an industry influencer, an expert in your field that provides quality products and services.

Generating Leads and Making Conversions

More people browsing the content on your site means you are more likely to gain new leads, which in turn will boost your conversion rates and reduce your bounce rate (people leaving your site).

Enhancing Brand Awareness and Encouraging Engagement

An important part of the buyer’s journey is company research. People want to know more about your business before they decide to trust your brand, and good SEO will put you on the map.

On-Page SEO Basics

Both on-page and off-page SEO tactics seek to develop the relevancy, authority, and trustworthiness of your website. On-page SEO focuses on elements within your website that can help you rank better on search engines, such as:

Web Content

Your digital content marketing strategy, of course, should be tailored to your business, but also to your audience. Identify a specific need for your potential customers, and craft content that answers their questions and meets their pain points. This allows you to establish trust with your audience and begin to make conversions.

Good content, whether it’s written or visual multimedia, doesn’t just promote your business. It also educates with data-driven, topic-based, and authoritative copy that has a clear goal—some kind of call-to-action (CTA). CTAs encourage users to do something specific, whether it’s joining a mailing list, requesting a quote or estimate, or contacting your office directly.

You should also utilize different types of content to diversify your strategy:

  • Images
  • Articles
  • Blog Posts
  • Infographics
  • Videos
  • Online Surveys
  • Lists & Checklists
  • How-Tos & Tutorials
  • E-Books
  • Podcasts

What is content writing for SEO basics?

Technical SEO Basics

While web content represents the more creative side of copywriting for SEO, there’s no small degree of technical aspects when it comes to optimizing webpages:

Keywords. While SEO trends are shifting away from exact keyword-match in order to achieve rankings, topical keywords related to your business and your industry are still important for telling search engine crawlers what the webpage is about, whether it’s a service page or blog article.

Internal Links. Internal links are hyperlinks embedded in text that link to a page somewhere within your site. This helps people navigate your site, and also helps emphasize certain pages over others, like your “Contact Us” page, or any one of your product/service pages.

Images and alt attributes. Alt attributes, or alt text, describes an image, video, or other multimedia for crawlers. Without this, search engines won’t be able to read the multimedia or recognize it on the webpage.

Title tag and meta description. Title tags are important because this is what users will see on the SERP. They should be creative and eye-catching, but also accurately describe the webpage. The meta description is a brief description of what the page is about, which is also visible on the SERP, under the title tag.

Responsive Web Design

A delayed response of even one second on your page loading speed can reduce your conversions by 7%. Your site needs to be fast enough to compensate for our short attention spans, but it also needs to be mobile friendly. 52% of web traffic comes from mobile devices, which means that most people are browsing online through their smartphones and iPads.

Responsive web design created by an experienced web developer accounts for all of this, including making sure your website has an easily navigated sitemap for users to follow.

Once again, people online can be quick to frustration when it comes to clicking through a website for information. The sitemap should have a clear hierarchy of structured data in order to streamline that process.

Off-Page SEO Basics

Off-page SEO accounts for tactics that are implemented outside of your website to increase your rankings:

Backlinks

A healthy linking profile includes pointing back to your website with organically earned links. You can do this by asking partners and collaborators of your business to share links on their website, with reciprocal guest posts, or getting shares from industry influencers.

Beware of trying to build your own backlinks with shady Black Hat SEO tactics, because some can actually work against you, rather than for your benefit. If search engines catch an improper link exchange scheme, your site can be penalized.

Social Media Marketing

Social media counts as a great way to achieve off-site link building. Getting shares, reposts, and linked comments in quantity (from normal users) and in quality (from industry influencers) can go a long way to increase your visibility as well as your credibility.

Social media also encourages engagement with your site, and therefore with your brand, which is why it’s important to create content that’s easily shareable, like blog posts, videos, infographics, and the like.

Mentions & Engagements

Outside mentions and engagements with your brand don’t require links to be useful for SEO. They can take the form of social media mentions, articles, blogs, videos, and other media—just as long as your specific brand gets a shout-out. Search engines crawl for these as well, and they’ll contribute to your SERP rankings.

How do I define SEO basics?

Want to Learn More About SEO Basics?

These tactics in on-page and off-page SEO can get your business the visibility it needs to gain traction, make conversions, and generate leads. Our team here at Digital Resource specializes in enhancing brand awareness and increasing search engine rankings with a custom SEO strategy. Reach out to us today to learn more about how we can help!

Alexandra is a content specialist, graduated with a Bachelor's degree in English from Palm Beach Atlantic University. She has a passion for literature and writing, and has extensive experience in content writing for digital marketing.

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