SEO Basics: What You Need to Know

You’ve heard the term SEO before. You know it has something to do with writing and search engines, but that’s about it. What the heck is SEO and how do you do it?

Let’s begin with what SEO is. SEO (search engine optimization) is defined by dictionary.com as “the methods used to boost the ranking or frequency of a website in results returned by a search engine, in an effort to maximize user traffic to the site.”

 

SEO isn’t a tool. It’s a method.

It’s a method used to generate more traffic to your website by using keywords throughout your content. The more relevant keywords you use, the better your SEO. The better your SEO, the higher you rank on the search engine results page (SERP). And the higher you rank on the SERP, the more website traffic you get. Simple, right?

Not so much.

SEO isn’t a one-time thing. It’s not a one-and-done process. With SEO, you have to update it routinely. You update it often so that your website isn’t stagnant and boring. You also update the SEO to stay in tune with the latest Google algorithm. You can update the copy yourself or hire a professional to help, but both options are a worthy investment of your time and money.

If you want to take the DIY route, here’s what you need to get started.

Keyword Density

Keyword density is the percentage a keyword is used in comparison to the total word count. Example: You write 100 words and use “website” 20 times. That’s a keyword density of 20% for the word “website.”

Long-Tail Keywords

Long-tail keywords are like normal keywords, just longer. Long-tail keywords are phrases. The best long-tail keywords are very specific phrases relevant to your business. If someone searches for “restaurants” a long list will appear. But if someone searches for, “gluten free Tex-Mex restaurants,” the list will be shorter and more detailed.

Getting Indexed

Search engines use crawlers to find pages. When search engines such as Google, Yahoo or Bing find a webpage, it gets indexed. When you see a website on the SERP, it’s been indexed. That’s a good thing.

Patience

A lot of people assume that SEO garners instant results. Unfortunately, updating the copy on your website doesn’t make your business instantly appear at the top of the SERP.  It takes time for the search engine crawlers to comb through the entire Internet to find your website. It can take weeks before results start showing up. This is normal.

It can be a little scary at first, but you can do it! Investing time and money in SEO will always have positive returns. If you have any questions or concerns, I’m here to help!