Test Your SEO Knowledge with These 5 Key Principles

By amanda Disilvestro on November 17, 2016

Let’s get back to the basics. There are plenty of sophisticated, complex SEO strategies out there that some people are convinced you have to try in order for your business to succeed, but the truth is, if you haven’t mastered the fundamentals of SEO then it doesn’t matter how many videos you transcribe on your blog or how often you analyze your rankings. SEO isn’t something that can be mastered in one day. Instead, it should be something that you tackle a little bit at a time, everyday. It’s meant to be a set of skills that are built upon over an extended period of time; especially considering the fact that it will be part of your website forever.

While I’m not advocating against higher-level SEO marketing, it’s important that before the new year hits to re-evaluate the basics and emphasize the point that sometimes less is more (at least in the beginning). So before you begin to tackle the complexities of SEO, first familiarize yourself with these 5 key principles.

  1. Use Keywords

keywords

image credit: Google.com

Before you can begin to write valuable content (see number 2), you need to understand what makes it valuable in the eyes of your audience. The answer to this is simple: keywords. Keywords are the words that people are going to search, and so they’re also the words that you want to incorporate into the pages on your website. First, think about the words that are most important to your business and brand. Then, begin typing them into Google to see what version(s) of them begin to pop up. This is Google’s helpful way of letting you know what words users commonly search.

Once you’ve figured out which words to use, incorporate the best ones into all the pages on your website. This will go a long way towards increasing your rankings. If you find yourself repeating the same phrase over and over again, consider using a synonym for abbreviated version so that you don’t sound redundant. Another helpful tip is to include a valuable keyword at the beginning of a post, like in the title or headline. If you’re still not sure how to use keywords or which ones to choose, consider using a tool like Google’s Keyword Planner. It’s easy to use and can be a great resource when deciding upon specific keywords. You can learn more here if you’re unfamiliar.

  1. Deliver Valuable and Organized Content

Once you’ve mastered the use of keywords, you can start incorporating them into the content that you post on your site. Creating valuable content is one of the most beneficial ways build a solid SEO foundation. Furthermore, incorporating keywords into your content is one of the best ways to make sure your content is seen as valuable to your audience. Everyone is familiar with those annoying clickbait articles that use titles to lure in readers, only to disappoint them by not following through with the intended content. Don’t trick your readers into visiting your site; earn their trust by delivering useful content so that they want to become a return visitor.

Once you’ve written some solid content (or paid someone else to do so) focus on organizing that content. Consider both intra-site and on-page content organization. While search engines generally do a good job of sorting through content that is not well organized, you don’t have that luxury on your actual website. Consider using things like title tags, bold text, tables, and images. If you spend some time organizing your content on the various site pages yourself, your users will definitely thank you for it.

 

content

image credit: blog.crazyegg.com

  1. Utilize Linkbuilding

Linkbuilding is a strategy that has the potential to become extremely complex, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Links are basically the foundation of the World Wide Web—it wouldn’t exist without them. According to Moz.com, every link should serve 3 purposes. It should:

  • Provide a legitimate opportunity for conferring non-search traffic
  • Help search engines crawl and index a site
  • Help validate a site

In addition to serving these important purposes, links should be spread out throughout your site in order to give each post an equal chance at ranking. Another version of linkbuilding that could be beneficial is the use of backlinks. These are “incoming hyperlinks from one webpage to another.” People use backlinks when they find your site to be valuable, and they can also be used to build relationships with other bloggers.

  1. Incorporate Image Tags

While this is a basic principle of good SEO, it’s interesting that it’s one that is often overlooked. It’s not enough to just include a bunch of images all over your website; you need to tag them as well so that Google can identify the image, index it, and know when to bring it up in a search. The two most popular types of tags are alt tags and title tags. Both are explained in detail in this article by Yoast.

The short version is this: alt tags (also known as img tags) describe what is in the actual image. The title tag appears when you mouse over an image, and typically includes an additional call-to-action. If your image doesn’t have a purpose, you should probably reconsider using that specific image as it’s taking up valuable space on your webpage.

  1. Work Frequently and Consistently

Finally, all these tips will be for naught if you incorporate them one time and then walk away, expecting them to keep up themselves. There’s a reason why I said in the beginning of this article that SEO is a journey that needs to constantly be revisited. You should always be checking the success (or lack thereof) of your rankings and your strategy, and tweaking anything that needs to be improved. It’s not enough to identify valuable keywords and write meaningful content one time; these are things that need to be done often in order for your site to be competitive. The more often you update your website with fresh content, images, webpages, etc. the more often search engines will visit, and subsequently index, your site. The more search engines visit your site, the higher your rankings will be. Learn more from The Miami SEO Company here.

So again, update your site regularly but keep your standards high—don’t be tempted to post a bunch of junky clickbait articles just to get visitors. Your time and effort will be rewarded eventually. Don’t be discouraged when it doesn’t happen in one day. Stay in it for the long haul and enjoy the benefits of working at your SEO.

If you’re just getting started, hopefully these fundamental principles are valuable to you. If you’ve been in the SEO game for a long time, perhaps this article will serve as a reminder to not neglect the basics. What do you find to be the most helpful SEO tips? Comment in the section below!

 



About The Author

amanda Disilvestro /