SEO In 2018
SEO in 2018 is often referred to as black magic in that most really don’t understand how it all works. It does keep changing though, but isn’t that part of the modern world we live in – evolution?
Search Engine Optimisation
If you are going to be a pedant about it all, then yes I suppose the dark arts are easier to work out than SEO in 2018. What was once the way to go has changed many times as the Great God Google – herein referred to as GGG tweaks their magic algorithm.
Some would say they do this to be mystic and maintain their hold on the market they have such as wonderful hold over. Me, I realise that as a business, they need to make money, they need to keep up with needs and desires, and adapt. Therefore of course they will tweak.
These days they realise that most of the world has some access to this thing called the internet and therefore need to be the best they can.
Which of course means, answering the queries, giving the best information they can, oh and also allowing other business’s to make money. I mean, if we as smaller business’s don’t make money, not much point to this GGG thing!
Ok, so what is in it for me then to be on that first page of google?
With the advent of GDPR finding leads for your business gets harder and harder. After all, you are only allowed to email or call someone up if you have had previous contact with them, or if you feel a query they have expressed would be better answered. Ok, so that’s perhaps a rather simplistic view of it, but if you need the definitive on it then heading here should help.
You will now find that Facebook ads are not as cheap as they were once touted to be, that Google Adwords is also a costly business – or it is if you don’t employ an expert – you might try LinkedIn – but thats only if you are B2B.
Social selling, as I call it, has now become something everyone is supposed to do, but does it really help you?
There are quite a few out there who really don’t understand what it is all about.
A simple test I take when looking for a business to work with, is if they are supposed to be social media management specialists, then look at their social media
- Are they using it?
- Do they have followers?
- Do they talk to them?
- Have they got a presence on all of them?
- Have they spread themselves too thin?
Oh, I know that various will tell you that a builders home is always left wanting as they are too busy working on others – and yes that might be so. But, if you are touting yourself as an internet business – its so easy these days to go look up and work out if you are doing what it says on the tin.
So yes, if you need to work with someone, check out their links, their website, their LinkedIn (if relevant) and also their social media stats!
A quick aside – we were approached via email last week by someone selling their services, stating they had 20 years experience – yet a little research showed they were in fact only 23 years old – boy are they good!!
Sorry, I have got de-railed – back to SEO and how you can use it to both improve brand and bring in more sales.
Life has just got harder for business’s, especially those starting out.
Some SEO Basics
You probably know that it stands for search engine optimisation, but what do you need to optimise? When and how?
On Page SEO
At the cornerstone of any SEO strategy has to be planning, and keyword planning has to be the start of what you hope to achieve.
So keywords then – ‘I’m in the dark and really don’t understand what is meant by long tail and even where to do the research.’
Long tail simply means more than 3 words in your keyword phrase. I would advise using something like Neil Patels Ubersuggest tool which is totally free and can help you with ideas of what to use and their search volume.
Optimise your page titles and meta descriptions – ok why you ask? Well apart from being able to utilise your keyword to its advantage – when your listing appears on Google, you want it to appeal so people click on it. Don’t forget your site is given credence for keeping people on it and reading it.
In your page content then, how about marking it out using H1 ands H2 tags. Ok, so you have glazed over potentially when I mentioned that – what the heck is this woman talking about??
Think of them as subheadings on your page – but using them, highlights to Google that you have content worth reading and worth their little spider, crawling. Its almost like a red flag to a bull – here I am, come get me type of thing.
Use images on your pages, use readable content, and even better, make it simply but interesting. After all, you again need people to stay on your page and read as this convinces the search engines you are worth placing higher in the rankings.
So after you have made your page both appealing to readers and search engines, you need to go tell people about it so they can come read it.
So Use Social Media or Off Page SEO!
Create accounts that refer to your business, or simply get others to tweet, post, share the information. Create relevant social media company pages on all that you can. If in doubt, use your keyword to search for those ranking highly on Google, they simply go spy on them.
Work out which media they are using to promote themselves, how they are telling various about their pages – follow them to see what kind of content they are promoting and how they are. A successful competitor (for the moment) – is the best way to work out what you need to do.
So finally then, how to convince the search engines that your content has authority and therefore needs to be placed higher – links from relevant websites.
Oh, scary thought, you have to do research and find out who you can get links from. I would again suggest googling your competitor and see where they are listed – then go and get listed as well.
There are in fact many free tools you can use that might help – but where to start!
Have you put your business on Google My Business? Bing? Yelp? Apple maps? Foursquare? Yellow Pages?
There is a veritable list of essential listings you need to make that will get you noticed. Oh and did we mention that its not an overnight thing?
The number of people who do it and expect miracles within a week is scary.
Be patient – the GGG works at his own pace and all you can do it trust.
Ok so at this point the penny has finally dropped and yes you can go and book a holiday then sit and spend it reading/researching and trying to implement the above but you are not the expert – so why on earth are you trying to master something that might take a lot of time and money?
Lets not forget, you are the expert in what you do and others are experts in what they do.
We always believe the mantra, that if you don’t know, get someone in who does. Spend your money wisely and bring in those who can to do, whilst you go out and earn money doing what you do best.
Ok, shameless plug – well after all, its what we do – use someone else that knows what they are doing with Local SEO!
I have put an interesting infographic for you to look at to see if it clears any of the fog – enjoy!
Courtesy of SEO Tribunal