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A beginner's guide to SEO

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Alex, Staff Writer

Tuesday, 22 June 2021

You might know your business inside out, but that doesn’t mean you have all the answers when it comes to promoting it online. Having a website is only half the battle, as if nobody can find it your conversions are unlikely to improve. Instead, your efforts need to focus on connecting your website with your customers through digital marketing.  

A key aspect of digital marketing is SEO. But, what exactly is SEO and why does it matter? 

If you’ve never heard of SEO before or are unsure how to implement it on your website, you’re in the right place. Here is our beginners guide to SEO to tell you more. 

What is SEO?

SEO stands for search engine optimisation. It involves using a series of tricks that are aimed at making your website more visible to search engines. The idea is to get your website ranking as highly as possible so that when users enter a search query, such as ‘plumbers in Brisbane’ it ranks high enough for users to see it. If your website isn’t appearing on the first results page users are unlikely to find you.

How Google and other search engines pull up search results is that they crawl websites for information they deem to be relevant to a particular search query. However, SEO goes further than that because the content needs to be human friendly as well as robot friendly. After all, if the content isn’t relevant or readable, users will simply exit the page. This will signal to search engines your website isn’t helpful, meaning your rankings will slide. 

Therefore, SEO requires diligent expertise to make sure your website is hitting it out the park where visibility and authority are concerned. There’s no magic formula or even a way to buy yourself to the top. Instead, SEO takes an organic approach to bring you genuine leads. 

SEO components 

  • Technical: Anything that affects the performance of your website along with its visibility. This can include page speed, URL structure, responsiveness, schema, security certificates etc. 

  • On-page: Content that is visible to your users or search engines, such as written copy, images, video, keywords, alt tags, meta descriptions etc. 

  • Off-page: Efforts aimed at growing your website’s authority and trust. It involves link building, social media marketing and user-generated content. 

Why is SEO important for my business?

Did you know there are over 3.5 billion Google searches a day? Aligning your website with what people are searching for is the best way to get noticed online, and this is the very essence of what SEO is all about. 

On a basic level, SEO uses keywords and other tactics to show up on search engines, in addition to making sure the content is valuable to the user once they get there. 

SEO matters for your business because without it, you could be missing out on some serious web traffic. Word of mouth and physical advertising is great, but in the modern age - particularly if your business is solely online - you have to go where the crowds are which is the internet. Increasingly, more users than ever are mobile users. 

SEO is also something that works over time, rather than just being a one-time effort. That means, any efforts you do now can potentially bring in new leads for years to come, though regular SEO reviews are still required. 

How can I improve my SEO?

Any SEO effort begins with an SEO audit, which will take a comprehensive look at your website as a whole including each individual page’s performance. 

Once the performance has been assessed, you can find exactly what errors are preventing it from getting noticed. Such errors can be incredibly varied from a slow page load time to a lack of keyword use, or even your website failing to load correctly on all devices, meaning your website is non-responsive. You won’t know until an audit is performed, which is the equivalent of getting under the bonnet of your website so that various aspects can be fine-tuned. 

From there it’s all about addressing the offending points and implementing an SEO strategy. The goal here is to make sure your target audience is kept in mind within every aspect of your website, including front and backend elements. 

It’s also important to regularly update your website too since Google dislikes stale content. This could include adding a blog, with regular posts that are also SEO optimised. All content should also be original, instead of being copied from elsewhere. 

SEO Specialists near me

Are you looking to improve your website’s SEO game? Whether you’re new to digital marketing or simply lack the time to figure out your own SEO, you can find SEO specialists across Australia on Bark.

Simply head over to our SEO specialists page. Tell us where you're based, and the level of SEO you require. You can also tell us if you need a particular aspect such as generating content, increasing your website’s backlinks or ranking for specific keywords. From there, we’ll connect you with the best local experts to whip your website’s SEO into shape in no time!

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