A Month of SEO Quick Tips for SEO Beginners

There is a good reason there are so many agencies and experts out there selling their SEO services with great success. Search Engine Optimization is essential to compete in an overstuffed online marketplace of businesses who do exactly what you do but sell more because they SEO better. I know, I know, I know… SEO can seem time consuming and overwhelming. You understand you need to get on top of your search engine optimizing strategy for your business website but if you don’t know what you are doing what’s the point? Besides, if you are not keeping up with the ever-changing landscape of search engine algorithms, it may seem like a complete waste of time to attempt to do any SEO yourself.

The hard truth is that NOT doing any SEO is not an option. So what’s your next move? If you’ve got the budget to purchase SEO services, GREAT! If you don’t, I’ve compiled a list of 30 SEO Quick Tips you can do no matter your mastery of search engine optimization. To help there are tons of links that will help you learn and get things done the right way.

If you can do just one of these things a day over the next month – spending under 10 minutes a day – you will see how you, all by yourself, can optimize your website and online presence for search engine ranking and greatly increase your business’s visibility in local searches.

Procrastination is the enemy here! That is why all these tips are short and sweet, but also over the long run, impactful SEO activities. You don’t need to do these in order, as they are stand-alone activities. And there is no special formula or combination. Make the time, just a few minutes a day, and tackle a crucial element in growing your business. Just get it done. You’ll be glad you did.

30 SEO Quick Tips to Increase Search Engine Ranking and Local Visibility

1. Look through your recent blog post and make sure your page headers (H1 through H3 tags) contain your keywords. If not, simply go in and edit your headers to update your blog posts.

2. Ask one customer for a review. Learn the right way and wrong way to get customer reviews and make it a priority to get these valuable marketing assets posted online.

3. When is the last time you looked at your keywords to make sure you were still on point for the most profitable terms? The foundation of every SEO campaign is its targeted keywords. If you already have an AdWords account use Google’s Keyword Planner to perform a keyword checkup for free. If there is a new front-runner don’t be afraid to update your keywords.

4. Check your business profiles on the top review sites that affect your industry for negative reviews that need handling. If you use a review and reputation management software like Reputation Loop then you already have a system in place to gather 5-star reviews and get them posted while handling negative reviews before they go online so you are one step ahead.

5. Create or claim your business profile on each of the major social media sites – Facebook, Twitter and Google+ at a minimum and fill in your business information. Don’t do anything else and stick to your 10 minutes but do this ASAP so no one steals your business name because you can’t make them give it back.

6. Clean up your social media profiles by adding attractive images and a post or two to let people you’re your company does use the profile, even if only occasionally. Make sure all business information is correct and remember to only do as much as you can get done in 10 minutes.SEO_social_share_buttons

7. Make it easy for your content to go viral by adding sharing functions that allow visitors to post your content to their favorite social networks with just a click. You can create and get code for Tweet or Share buttons directly from Twitter by visiting the Twitter add a button page. If you want Facebook sharing buttons you can visit Facebook’s Follow Button page, Facebook Share Button page or Facebook Like Button page. Similarly visit LinkedIn’s website to create your LinkedIn Follow button or Company Profile box, and grab the code to put anywhere you want in your content. A quick search will get you instructions for Google Plus, Pinterest, and the other social media networks you use.

8. Are your keywords in your Meta titles and Meta descriptions? Review your webpages to make sure your keywords and brand name are in your Meta titles and descriptions in a way that answers a search query which increases the chances of your business showing up in search engine results.

9. Whether or not you believe content is king (or queen) don’t doubt for a moment that it’s incredibly important to your SEO. Take 10 minutes to brainstorm and write down blog ideas and titles to fill up your content calendar. Once a week is better than never. Open your calendar and appropriately schedule time to write and posts to your blog (or outsource) to build up quality website content to be found in search engine results.

10. Define or clarify your target audience. You may not need to build a three-page buyer persona report but even it is as simple as writing out your target marketing on a post it or putting it on a bulletin board, keep it front and center when doing your SEO because everything should be aimed at enticing that segment to your website.

11. Write and preschedule five social media posts on your preferred social media management tool such as Hootsuite or Buffer. For more exposer and greater engagement take a look at these social media tools to automate a lot of the social media work you should be doing.

12. Take a quick trip through your UX by replicating the customer experience from start to finish. Search for your product through a search engine, find your website, find the product, and go all the way through to the purchase process until your click for payment. Did that take more than 10 minutes? What is the first step towards speeding up and creating a more enjoyable experience for your user? Put that solution on your calendar to get done.

13. Twice a month or so check where your company stands in search engine results for your keywords and locality. Make a note of position changes and compare that to your latest marketing and SEO activities to see if you can find the correlations.

14. Open up your analytics and take a look at your numbers (as opposed to just looking at the graphs). What are your trends in the online marketing metrics you should be tracking? Marketing without measuring the results is a waste of time. Figure out what is working and what is not.

15. Go through reviews on the major review sites like Facebook and Google, and reply to one customer. Whether they are good reviews or bad reviews, interacting with your customers has benefits beyond SEO. Learn to use your online reviews to improve your business and show your previous and future customers you care about their experience. This also gives you an opportunity to solve consumers’ problems with your product or service before they become serious issues.

16. Rewrite the headline and title tag of your two lowest performing blog posts.

17. Browse through the pages of your website and add links to relevant other pages on your sites (and high ranking exterior sites). You’ll see examples of that throughout this posts. Links within your site and two your site are most beneficial when you use your keyword phrase. So if your keyword phrase is “best Phoenix dentist” then anchor your link to that phrase and not to a term like “click here” or another irrelevant term.

18. Keep Learning! Even if it is 10 minutes at a time. There are a lot of resources out there but I suggest you put a link to MOZ’s Learn SEO and Search Marketing page and browse through guides like: Beginner’s Guide to SEO, Beginner’s Guide to Link Building, and Beginner’s Guide to Social Media. By learning the basics you can gain the knowledge to build your SEO strategy.

Learn_SEO_reputationloop

19. Type your business name into Google, Yahoo and Bing and see what search engine users see when they search for your business. Take note of mistakes or inconsistencies you can fix when you read the snippets.

20. Scan through your website pages and ensure you are using keywords and keyword phrases in text links, image ALT attributes and domain name.

21. Build a stronger Calls to Action. What good is it to optimize your website for search engines if when you actually build up traffic visitors don’t know what you want them to do next?

22. Find a source of quality images, presentations, videos and infographics you can share on your website and use keyword rich captions and tags.

23. Create a catch-all SEO file on your computer and in your online “favorites” or “bookmarks”. SEO is an ongoing, if not daily activity, and you are going to want a place for all this SEO knowledge you will be discovering along the way.

24. Get high quality photos of your locations and products and add them to your website, review sites, and business listings.SEO_broken_links_reptuationloop

25. Use a free broken link checker like the cleverly named BrokenLinkChecker.com to scan for and fix broken links on your site. Search engines don’t like them and site visitors like them even less. The scan below showed only two broken links on our whole site, both in the code of two unapproved spam blog comments.

26. If competitors are ranking higher than you in search take a look at their website and business listing to see if they are doing something you could replicate for better SEO for your business.

27. Review your business listings in online directories. For local SEO it is very important to have your NAP (name, address and phone number) consistent over the whole internet and to avoid duplicates. Make sure your listings are correct, you’ve optimized your links, and add photos and extra information like hours of operation where possible.

28. Bookmark top SEO blogs like Search Engine Land and Search Engine Journal and in your 10 minutes today read one blog post that is relevant to what you are trying to accomplish online with your business to educate yourself on SEO.

29. Go into your Google Webmaster account and make sure you have enabled “Enhanced Image Search” so your properly tagged images are found by google and will show up in the blended results for your keywords.

30. Create or claim your profile on major review and local sites. Update images, business information and contact information.

SEO is not rocket science but it does require a little knowledge and time. These quick tips will get you going in the right direction but there are bigger things that need to be part of your overall SEO plan. When you prioritize SEO, and have more than 10 minutes, remember this:

  • Optimize for Mobile Search
  • Social Media matters so get active
  • Focus on more than one keyword for better results

Make the time and you will reap the rewards of an active search engine optimization strategy.

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Zach_Color_Trans_small_CroppedAbout The Author

Zach Anderson is the co-founder of Reputation Loop (helping small businesses grow by generating customer feedback and online reviews) who loves online marketing and golf.