Search Engine Optimization Basics
When looking to improve your website’s online visibility, search engine optimization (SEO) is often a good starting point. SEO involves improving a website’s presence in organic search results and, while it includes a number of moving pieces, it can easily be done on your own. However, proper SEO training is required in order to perform the correct and effective tactics, in addition to avoiding practicing out-of-date SEO strategies. Regardless, SEO is quite necessary in this modern age, and StatCounter can provide you with the right information to get started with SEO for your own website.
With StatCounter, you have the ability to track where your traffic is coming from and how those users interact on your site. This information can help you assess your SEO strategy to discover areas that are succeeding and the areas that are underperforming to further improve your strategy. In order to get started, you will first need to learn some of the basics of SEO—and as mentioned, we can help you get started. Take a look!
Once you have an idea of the basics of SEO, you’ll be ready to move on to further training. When it comes time, be sure to view the pages below:
The backbone of any sound SEO strategy is thorough and relevant keyword research. Keyword research can be time-consuming, yet it’s essential to discovering the right search queries to target. To help you in your keyword endeavors, you can utilize a number of keyword research tools that can help you find the right terms.
SEMRush, for example, allows 5 free keyword searches every day, but detailed reports will require a paid plan. With this, you can find the best keywords that your website can realistically rank for and will even serve you a listed of related keywords that you may want to target.
Real World Application
For example, if you run a water park in Tallahassee, Florida, you can aim for keywords like “Best water park” and add “in Tallahassee” to create a localized keyword, “Best water park in Tallahassee”. You can then build new content around this keyword in hopes of improving your search result ranking for such.
For more information the keyword tools and how you can use them to your advantage, you can check out our keyword research tools page.
Once you have identified the keywords you want to target and rank for, you will need to write unique content around these search queries. You will want to write content for every page of your website, so if you offer certain services or products, you will want to build a web page for each.
In writing content around the keywords you’ve selected, keep the web user in mind. Not only do you want to ensure the content is closely related to the term, but you also need to be sure it offers the information the web user is looking for. Otherwise, users will see the page isn’t relevant and simply leave your site. This action is called a “bounce” and will directly affect your search result rankings, so be sure to cater to your readers.
To help ensure you’re writing content your visitors will find resourceful and interesting, you can type your selected terms into Google search. As you search each term, you can use the results Google provides to determine what type of content will rank for that keyword. This can help you write compelling content that’s more likely to rank in results.
In addition to static onsite content, you may also want to consider adding a blog section to your website. Posting regularly can help improve some of your keyword rankings, and can also keep your customers engaged on your site by providing new and interesting content regularly. This will help search result rankings by continuing to add new content, but blog posts are also perfect to share with social media posts.
Another important aspect of any sound SEO strategy is to build your website's backlink portfolio. While backlinks aren’t nearly as important to search engine algorithms as they were in the early days of SEO, they still play an important role in improving your website’s domain and page authorities. These can have a major impact on how your website performs in search result rankings.
Backlink building can be a tedious task, however, it is worthwhile. You can get high-quality backlinks in a number of ways. Online directories like Yelp! and Yellow Pages, for example, will provide your site with a backlink and offer another avenue for search users to find you. Guest blogging on other sites is another sound technique for getting backlinks, as many sites will be more than willing to trade free content for a backlink to your site.
Note: Backlinks are essentially any link directing users to your site from another, external website. So, if a business in your industry mentions you on their website and leaves a link to your website for users to visit, you’d acquire on backlink.
On Page Optimization
In addition to creating onsite content and acquiring backlinks for your site, you’ll need to perform a variety of on page optimization tactics. Header tags, title tags, image alt text, and many more aspects of your onsite content will need to be properly optimized with the keywords found during keyword research. For instance, including a keyword relevant to your website or business is a must in title tags, as this is a major piece of many search engine’s algorithms. Additionally, the title tag, along with the meta description, is one of the only things a search user will see in search results. This leaves you very little room for error when attempting to get these visitors to your site.Once on your site, the content will need to be broken up accordingly so it is easy to understand for both users and search engines. Header tags are used to do this, and incorporating keywords in them can help your website rank better for the keyword in question. For instance if you’re a dentist and have page on your site covering dental crowns, the H1 tag (essentially the title) may be “Dental Crowns and Their Benefits” while an H2 tag (subheading) could read, “6 Advantages of Dental Crowns”. Of course, you can get creative here—just be descriptive and be sure to include a keyword in each of your tags.
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As you can see, the basics of SEO are quite straight forward, yet carrying out these basic strategies is not so clear cut. As you delve into SEO and work to improve your website, keep in mind SEO is never a one-and-done process. For help in your endeavors, you can find a great deal of insightful information with regards to SEO right here at StatCounter.
In order to determine how your SEO strategy is performing, you will also need to utilize StatCounter. With our web tracker, you can monitor your website’s traffic to determine how users are interacting once on your site and view a range of other important metrics. In doing so, you’ll be able determine which areas of your site are performing well, as well as those that could use some work.
If you are experiencing any issues, you can contact StatCounter member support by filling out the form below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.
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