BASICS OF SEO: How To Rank #1 On Google Search Results

Without a thoughtful SEO strategy that focuses on the basics of SEO, your business could be missing out on thousands in sales every month.

People are searching for an answer to their problem. You solve that problem through your product. Search Engine Optimization is the act of optimizing your website, so the people looking for your solution find you on Google, Bing, and other search engines. The growth potential for your business from SEO is insurmountable. With a good SEO strategy, you will reach high-value customers looking to buy.

What SEO Is Not

We recently saw this post on a small business Facebook Group:

“I started a new business today, created a website, set my price, and started watching the screen.

So far, nothing… And it’s already been several hours.

So I guess I need to do something to get people coming to my website. But what? How have you started? What is the secret?”

 This post illustrates a couple of misconceptions about websites. 

First, websites are the foundation of your digital marketing–it’s where you send your customers and leads. 

Second, you must market your website to get traffic. The best way to grow traffic is through search engine optimization. However, SEO takes time. Unless you use SEO best practices, it could be weeks, months, even years, before Google indexes a website. 

Third, unlike social media marketing (which we will discuss later), SEO is a slow process that develops long-term results. Social Media can flood your website with visitors from a viral post, but SEO can stabilize a business and allow it to grow year over year. 

“Good SEO work only gets better over time. It’s only search engine tricks that need to keep changing when the ranking algorithms change.” – Jill Whalen

If you do not properly invest in your SEO, you are going to lose business. 

Any of your competitors that have a better SEO strategy than you will beat you in the marketplace. Maintaining a good SEO strategy will prevent you from missing out on potentially hundreds of thousands of website visitors. 

How Standard SEO is Different than Local SEO

If your business needs to reach a wide audience, optimizing your website with Standard SEO practices will increase traffic from around the world. 

An e-commerce business, regional chain, or national company will need to devote more time and effort into their SEO to see results. The reality is that instead of competing with a couple of neighborhood stores, you’re competing with the entire internet. 

A good SEO plan is required to reach the audience you want to reach, keywords you want to rank for, and a method to convert the traffic into loyal customers. 

Basics Of SEO #1 – Links 

Without links, your site is going to struggle to make rank well on Google. Links have been one of Google’s key ranking factors for years. And after all this time, they’re still at the top of the list.

Need proof?

Not too long ago, Brian Dean and his team at Backlinko analyzed one million Google search results to see which factors correlate with first-page rankings.

Here’s what they found out about backlinks:

Evidently, they found that as the number of links a site has decreased so does their rank.

But why are links so important? Links from high-authority sites send a trust signal to Google. It’s like having somebody advocate for you. The more people that advocate for you, the more trustworthy you are.

Basics Of SEO #2 – Headline and Meta Description

The headline and meta description of your post or page is displayed in the search results. It’s probably the first thing a person sees. It looks like this:

This is your first impression. So you want to make it a good one. While your meta description isn’t a direct ranking signal for search engines, it does carry some importance.

Because it helps people decide whether to click on your result or not, the way people engage at this point is called the click-through rate (CTR). It compares the number of people who click on a result and how many people see it.

And CTR is an important ranking factor. So you can and should optimize your headline and meta description to improve the click-through rate. Because if people aren’t clicking on your link, Google will notice and drop your ranking.

Headline Quick Tips

  • And your headline is a big factor in your CTR. 
  • Make sure your headline contains your focus keyword.
  • Google wants to know what your article is about; your headline is the answer. 
  • A headline optimized for SEO isn’t necessarily going to be the most appealing.
  • Place keywords close to the beginning.
  • Make it catchy and clickable.

Basics Of SEO #3 – Content 

If you neglect content on your site, then you’re doing it wrong. Content is another ranking factor that’s way up there at the top of the list.

The reason why content is so vital to SEO is common sense…

Google wants you to produce fresh content consistently, so it knows that you’re still active. Content keeps people on your site. This is a signal to the search engines that you’re providing relevant and useful information.

Creating content on your website for SEO purposes is a tactful way to target valuable keywords that will bring audiences to your website.

However, this is very different from just blogging whatever you feel like. 

Here’s an example:

Let’s imagine you have an e-commerce store selling sporting goods. You should write blog posts reviewing, comparing, and detailing different types of products you sell. A post like “The Ultimate Soccer Cleat Comparison” would entice audiences who are actively interested in buying soccer cleats. Then on the blog post, you link back to each individual product, and if your post is successful in helping your customer determine which cleat is right for them, they would be able to click and buy right from your store. 

The goal is to create valuable content that connects potential customers to your products. 

Conclusion

Yes, SEO is like trying to hit a moving target. 

But a key takeaway from this article is that there are proactive methods you can use to improve SEO, even if you have no technical skills.

Go after the important metrics such as links or content with simple methods and tricks. Think of your audience as well as the search engines when working on your site

Creating a complete and detailed digital marketing plan might seem overwhelming, it doesn’t have to be that way. Using our guide below, you can have a complete digital marketing plan that you can be confident in all in under an hour.

Website Redesign 101 Series
  1. Website Messaging 101: Sell More Products By Talking Like A Caveman
  2. 3 Critical Things Every Website Needs
  3. How To Do Local SEO: Boost Your Website & Rank #1 On Google Maps
  4. Basics of SEO: How To Rank #1 On Google Search Results
  5. How to Make Easy Lead Generators For Your Website
  6. 6 Quick Tips to Improve Your Website in 2021