What is SEO and Why is it Important?
Most consumers put little to no thought about the hours of time poured into creating and managing a website when they browse it. Whether they’re reading How-To’s on an internet forum, watching YouTube videos, or even shopping on Amazon, one thing is for certain. Each of the developers for those websites has spent many, many hours pouring over the content making sure they were creating an SEO-heavy page.
What is SEO? SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization, and that’s what we’re here to talk about.
SEO is the process of taking steps to ensure a website or a piece of content from a website, ranks higher in Google search results. Web developers use keywords, to make sure the content on their website is current and relevant. The better the keywords, the better the search results.
To better understand how you can rank higher in the search engines, you need to first really get how search works. The goal of this article is to help you better understand how important SEO is in your search rankings on Google, Yahoo, Bing, and more. This gets more eyes on your business.
In the grand world of SEO, there are two equally important avenues: on-page SEO and off-page SEO.
On-page SEO is about building a website rich in content that will improve your search rankings. This boils down to writing high-caliber content regularly, using strong keywords, making sure your metatags (the snippet you see below a link in a Google search.) and titles are well written, using those same strong keywords.
Off-page SEO is the behind-the-scenes of your website, the optimization happening “off-screen”. This involves creating content people are excited to share, building relationships through this content. It’s not easy, but it’s very much a necessary part to be SEO successful.
What many people don’t know is that Google penalizes sites that do things that are frowned upon (i.e. duplicate content, invisible text, keyword stuffing, redirecting, and poor linking). These practices are often referred to as “Black Hat”, whereas, on the opposite end of the spectrum we have “White Hat” strategies, which include:
- Keeping your content relevant
- Well-labeled images
- Relevant links and references
- Complete sentences with good spelling and grammar
- Standard-Compliant HTML
- Unique and relevant page titles
This all seems pretty black and white, right (pun intended)? However, Google has been known to be contradictory in its standards. For example, guest blogging. Google has admitted they are not a fan of guest blogging simply to build links. However, if you’re a guest blogger with valuable content for the readers on sites that are relevant to your niche, then you’ll be fine.
Now that we have a better understanding of what SEO is, let’s dive into the most important aspect of SEO. It requires a lot of time and action. It’s not something that you’ll see immediate results from. SEO has an end goal of long-term success.
In 1996, Bill Gates wrote this essay, effectively coining the phrase “Content is King”, which was published on the Microsoft website.
Content is King is a phrase that has become timeless and is just as true today as it was in 1996.
You see, when you go to Google looking for a recipe for “easy homemade enchiladas”, Google puts all of its efforts into providing what Google believes is the best recipe for enchiladas. It doesn’t look just at enchiladas, but instead, it tries to give you what you asked for. Easy. Homemade. Enchiladas. Google will always try to give you the best experience by directing you to the greatest content it can find.
This means the number one job for excellent SEO results is to produce excellent content. Yeah, you still have to put in a lot of work, but just like any other skill, you get what you put into it. The best marketing in the world won’t help you sell an inferior quality product, just like highly technical SEO is pointless if you don’t provide quality content. It’s like Ralph Lauren once said “A lot of hard work is hidden behind nice things”.
3 Tips for Creating Quality Content
- Know Your Audience: What is the reader looking to accomplish by coming to your page?
- Break Up the Text: It should come as no surprise that people have short attention spans, and writing an enormous essay of text doesn’t work anymore. You need to break it up into images, headers, and smaller paragraphs.
- Is it actionable? Have you ever read an article and been left feeling rather confused and a little like “What now”? Your content needs to be thorough, but it also needs to provide everything the reader needs when they finish your article.
The way one decides what to title their website, or how to describe their product, is done using keyword research, which we briefly touched on at the beginning of this article.
Keyword research is done for many reasons, however, the two primary reasons are to make sure you are creating content that is relevant, and to rank higher in Google search results. By doing keyword research you are opening a door into the consumer’s mind, in doing this you are able to learn what it is exactly that they search for.
Choosing the Right Keywords
Let’s say you sell a product in which a consumer pays a monthly fee for said product, yet you’re ranking close to the top for that product as a “Free” opportunity, can you guess which kind of readers you’re going to attract?
You’ll be bringing in people looking for free stuff, which means they’ll likely be reluctant to just hand over their credit card the moment they come to your website. While you’ve ranked #1, 2, or 3 in the Google search results, it’s with the wrong audience, so you’ve put a bunch of work into your website, and you’re not going to see any ROI. You’d be better off picking a different keyword, even if it means losing 500 visits a month.
Think about it this way: You use the keyword “free” and you get 532 hits on your website, but no sales. However, by removing the word “Free” and replacing it with “Low Cost” you’re going to get fewer results, but a higher conversion rate. People funneled to your site using those search terms are going there, prepared to spend some money.
So, now that we’ve covered the basics of SEO marketing, creating quality content, and choosing the right keywords, you might be asking yourself “Now what? How do I put this into action?” By contacting JustUs Chiropractic Marketing and speaking to one of our Marketing Experts you’ll get solid advice on just how to spend your marketing budget. Maybe SEO isn’t the route you need to go, maybe it’s New Patient Marketing or a Referral Booster. At JustUs Chiropractic Marketing we are honest and only want what’s best for you, our client. Contact us today by phone at: 360-326-8896, use our live chat below, or schedule a consultation with one of our Marketing Experts by clicking here.