For new business start-ups, and small established businesses, there isn’t always the budget to pay for long-term SEO strategy and implementation. While hiring a professional may be the best route to SEO success, there is an argument for keeping things in-house until you’ve established your roots and settled in to your industry. If you’re happy to take on the extra work, here are some essential SEO survival tips for beginners that you might want to follow…
- Keep up to date with search engine updates and changes. The easiest way to do this is get in the habit of scouring reputable SEO and search engine blogs. Google, Bing, and Yahoo blogs are a good place to start. After that you should look at SEOMoz, Matt Cutts, and this blog, of course! Set up an RSS feed with all of your SEO sources so the content will be pushed to you daily, and you can catch up with it over breakfast.
- SEO is not a one-off task that you can do and forget about. It’s on-going, and you should be constantly monitoring and responding to changes. Make sure you have Google anayltics, Google Webmaster Tools, and Bing Webmaster Tools set-up and configured for your site.
- Never stop researching keywords. This is another area that you should be monitoring, both on your site, and on your competitors. There are some great Chrome plugins that will allow you to monitor these more effectively – SEO Quake is my personal favourite.
- Keep producing content. If you want the search engines to keep coming back, you have to give them something new to crawl. The best way to do this is to regularly post content; the most popular way to do this is to host a blog.
- Once your blog is established, invite guest bloggers to post, and this will get you some valuable inbound links.
- Don’t worry about keyword stuffing. This no longer works, and could even work against you if your keyword density is too high. Google in particular now wants to see valuable content that other, reputable sites link to.
- Google image search is a great way to bring in traffic, so make sure that you name your images correctly. Rather than “DCS10768.jpg” with no alt tags, make your file name descriptive, using the underscore or dash key to separate words. This will also make it easier when users want to ‘pin’ your images to Pinterest.
- Get on social media, and make sure you have good social media integration on your site. Social media is one of the best ways to share your content, get noticed, and get links to your site.