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November 3, 2022

It’s not too late to learn how to do your own SEO

DIY has always been a business owner’s strength, so what’s stopping you from doing your own SEO?

There’s nothing to fear about DIY SEO.  It’s easier and more affordable than you think and you’ll be amazed at the results you can achieve for your business.  

This article explains the basics of SEO and tells you what you need to do to get started.  And you don’t need to start from scratch either.  You can always implement SEO on an existing website.

However, there are many elements to SEO – some of which are more complex and technical than others – so for now, this article will just cover a ‘starter pack’ to spark up your online visibility.   

Getting started with doing your own SEO

First up, let’s discuss why SEO is necessary for your business.

Every business has its own marketing strategy for establishing its reputation and gaining new customers, but in today’s digital and highly competitive world, if people can’t find you online or if your business doesn’t feature high up in the search results, you’re likely to lose out to the opposition.

SEO is about putting processes and structures in place on your website that appeal to the people who visit your site and that will get your site noticed by Google.  

Why is Google’s attention important?  Well, if the search engine likes what they see, they’ll promote your website higher up their rankings.  And that means more visitors to your website and more chance of making a sale.

Where to start with DIY SEO?

When you start learning the ropes with SEO, you should focus on the following five elements:

  1. Keyword research
  2. On and off-page SEO
  3. Content creation
  4. Link-building 
  5. The user experience

Keyword research

Just as you put strong foundations down when you build a house, you need solid keyword research to build a successful SEO strategy.  And when it comes to finding the right words and phrases that your target market use to search for you online, there’s no substitute for time and effort.  The more you put in, the greater your chances of success.  Free tools like Keywords Everywhere and Google are excellent options for DIY keyword research.

Read more on how to use Google for keyword research.

On and off-page SEO

On-page SEO covers the things you do on your own website (for example navigation, formatting, use of keywords, meta descriptions, image descriptions) while off-page SEO refers to things related to your website but which happen on other sites (review sites, business directories, external links).  

You can control the on-page stuff, but not the off-page SEO because that relates to other people’s opinions of your business and your online content.  When you’re starting off on your SEO journey, you should focus on the page-ranking factors that you can influence.

Read more about the difference between on-page and off-page SEO

Content creation

Quality is crucial for business success and it’s also the golden rule when it comes to your online content.  In addition to quality, content has to be original, engaging, helpful, relevant and contain the right blend of keywords and information in order to satisfy your users and the search engines.

That might sound like a lot, but it really is crucial.  Whether you’re compiling your home page, adding an update to your Google Business Profile or making a ‘How To’ video, quality is king.

Building links from other sites

Google assesses every website according to a long list of ranking factors (over 200 in fact), so there are a lot of boxes to tick.  Link-building is in the top three, so it is worth your while focusing your attention on getting quality links back to your website.

Guest blogging, engaging with social media, networking with your industry niche and requesting links in local directories are all effective ways of accumulating links, but be warned.  Google is only interested in genuine links (no quick fixes here) and the process takes time and effort, but it’s worth it.

Read more about getting started with link building.

Make user experience a priority

You’ve experienced good and bad websites.  And you probably didn’t stay long on the bad ones because you got frustrated, or they took too long to load, or you couldn’t find what you wanted etc etc.  The user experience is as important to real people as it is to Google, so when you start with SEO, you need to focus on making sure things like your site structure, navigation, design, loading speeds and content are top-notch.  

You want to give your users every reason to stay on your site for longer, not give them a reason to leave.

Getting started with your own SEO

A great place to start learning your own SEO is side-by-side with a digital marketing expert and you’ll get just that if you sign up for The SEO School.  This easy-to-follow, modular online course was designed specifically to empower small business owners like yourself take charge of your own SEO strategy – and succeed.  

You’ll learn all the basics plus get loads of insider tips, tricks and techniques from highly experienced SEO specialist, Karen Dauncey plus ongoing support throughout the course and afterwards.  

Alternatively you might want to get started with our freebie The SEO Starter Kit

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