SEO or Search Engine Optimisation helps increase organic traffic and ranking in the search engines. It is an excellent strategy if you are looking to save on costs.
SEO strategy is the process of streamlining your website content to enhance the probability of featuring in the results of renowned search engines. The good news is you need not do it all on your own, so don’t fret. An SEO marketing agency serves as an excellent white knight in this endeavour.
Why should you have an SEO strategy?
An SEO strategy helps your brand and business to be on track in content creation. It ensures that you are curating content that people are searching for instead of feeding into your perception or interpretation of what you think people want to find.
1. Curate a list of relevant topics
It is common to think that keywords and phrases are the first steps in devising an SEO strategy. Well, they are the lifeblood of SEO, but not the first step. The first thing is to enlist a set of topics that you’d like to address. An ideal way to go about this is by starting with ten words and terms related to your products and services. You can use SEO tools such as Google Keyword Tool, Ahrefs or SEMrush to study the search volumes. Based on this, you can then create unique variations.
2. Make a list of keywords
Now that you have enlisted the topics and areas of interest, next up is the keywords list. This is crucial in optimizing your web pages for keywords. Each keyword is a pillar, and for each one, you should create five or ten (if not more) long-tail keywords that dig deeper into the keyword topic. Let’s say you are into selling sports shoes. So, the pillars could be running shoes, mens’ sports shoes, women’s sports shoes, fitness shoes, among others. Say you want to focus on running shoes. Some of the possible questions or long-tail keywords could be:
- What terrains can I cover with running shoes?
- Can the same pair of shoes be used for road and trail running?
- What is the best way to maintain the shoes?
- How long (on average) do road running shoes last?
- Can trail running shoes be used for hikes and treks?
3. Looking beyond keywords
When it comes to popular and frequently-searched topics, there is ample content available out there. It becomes challenging to increase the ranking on search engines based on keywords and phrases. Another risk is that businesses can compete with their content when multiple web pages target the same keywords (cannibalization) and hence, the same SERPs. A way around this is to complement the keyword SEO with image SEO.
Why image SEO?
An excellent analogy in today’s day and age are movies and series, especially superhero universes. These primarily operate through stellar and high-octane visual effects. Similarly, for websites, it is the images that add a captivating visual for visitors.
Now, what is image SEO, you might ask? Image SEO entails creating high-quality images to augment online engagement. They should be in the correct format and size. The most crucial aspect here is to find the most suitable ones. There are multiple images out there that propagate a particular emotion, trend or incident. It all boils down to relatability.
So, how do you select the best ones and from where? Answering the second part of the question, platforms including Stock or Pixabay offer images on sale or rent. However, it is better to go for original ones that you have clicked yourself. This is organic SEO for images. Ensure that you have the right setting, lighting background and crew.
Once the correct images are selected, they need to be resized and converted into the appropriate format. Also, test them for website loading time using WebPageTest, GTmetrix or Google PageSpeed Insights, among others.
4. Page-building for each topic
Once the above aspects are sorted, the next thing is to create pages of each topic or subject. Ranking for websites can get tricky if you are getting individual pages to rank for a few keywords. As a solution, you can create a page or post using the pillar topics. What this does is that it provides an overview.
Think of the pillar pages as a table of contents for your website. By doing so, you are introducing or describing the topic or theme and suggesting subsections. This helps you organize your content and indicates to readers the areas you want to elaborate on in subsequent posts.
5. Create a blog section on your website
Blogs are excellent for driving traffic and engaging with the online audience. They generally are informative yet fun. Also, each blog is an individual web page. It serves as an additional opportunity to enhance the ranking in SERPs.
The three do’s of writing blogging
- Only make three to four references to the long-tail keyword
- Provide links to the pillar page that you have created for the subjects. Use CMS (or content management system) to create tags or anchor texts in the body
- Each blog post, once published, should be linked to the parent pillar page
There are several ways to get SEO right. The above methodology is one way. The next is to explore the tools and play around them.
The internet is a holy grail for creativity. So, use it to bring forth your imagination. Keep yourself updated with the industry practices. Have a regular schedule for content creation, especially blogs. Additionally, you should have a link-building strategy to help with off-page SEO. Doing so helps online users to arrive at your website from other sources, boosting your numbers categorically.