You probably know what SEO is and how it can help your business become more successful, but do you know how to create a search engine optimization campaign that works? Building an effective strategy is where most of the questions come into play, so use these five tips to help build a SEO plan that delivers results.
1. Identify Your Target Audience
SEO is designed to position your website in front of prospects that are actively seeking for your products or service. You need to define your target customer before moving forward.
Where are they located? Are they located in the United States only? Are they just a specific geographical location? Or are they only in a specific state or local region? What is their age? It is important that you gather as much detail as possible, as it will greatly help in your keyword research in the next step.
2. Identify Your Keywords
Once you know who your target audience is you will need to determine the keywords that are going to help attract that ideal customer. This is where keyword research comes into play. You will want to use a combination of common sense as well as keyword research tools to begin to harvest your target keywords.
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Google’s Keyword Planner can help to give you some ideas, and you can use these keyword research tips to help identify great keywords for your SEO campaign. You will also want to identify negative keywords, which are terms you don’t want to show up for. As an example let’s assume you are creating a SEO campaign for a Lamborghini dealership. You would want to add “pictures” to your negative keywords list, eliminating people that are simply searching for pictures of a Lamborghini from seeing and clicking on your ads. Negative keywords are just as important as regular keywords, so make sure that you spend time creating that list as well.
3. Get Your On-Page SEO Correct
Before you even think about link building you need to make sure that your on-page SEO is perfect. Your on-page SEO is a combination of user experience as well as optimization based on the keyword the particular page is targeting. Instead of breaking it down again, check out our complete definitive on-page optimization guide, which shows you how to properly optimize your on-page factors with detailed instructions.
Take your time and make sure that each page on your website is properly optimized. Then, moving forward, make sure that all of your blog posts and additional pages are all created with proper on-page SEO in mind. Ignoring your on-page SEO is like attempting to run a race with both legs tied together. It puts you at such a disadvantage from the beginning.
4. Focus on Quality Link Building
If you need a brief introduction, we explain what link building is here. Links are the main signal that the search engines use to help determine their search results. There are many different components of SEO, but link building has always been (and will continue to be) the most important signal.
The way to approach link building has changed over the years, and what was once a pure numbers game is now focused around quality. Creating quality content increases the chance that other websites will naturally link back to your site. There are plenty of link building opportunities that you can use to earn high quality and relevant links, such as infographic marketing and guest blogging.
5. Track Keywords & Analyze Data
Use a keyword tracking tool to monitor the positions of your keywords in the search results. You will also want to use Google Analytics to determine where your traffic is coming from, how long they are staying on your website, and where they are visiting.
There is so much data available for you to use, so make sure that you take advantage of everything you can. This is how you determine what is working and what isn’t. You can also use Google Webmaster Tools to see if you can uncover any additional keywords that are bringing visitors to your website. Sometimes you can identify additional keywords to target and introduce into your SEO campaign.
SEO is not something that you can do one and forget it. It is a constant process that requires time, evaluation, and optimization, but it all begins with a solid foundation. Using these simple tips can help you get started the right way, resulting in the beginning of a long term and successful SEO effort.