This is the most straightforward SEO guide that you shall come across on the internet. With tons of jargon being published every day on the internet, it can be a bit misleading to follow them. Well, this step-by-step SEO guidebook for beginners is simple and gives you all the necessary tips to improve your site’s ranking on Google.
So, without any further ado, let’s list down the steps right away.
Step1. Make Sure Your Website Is Google Accessible
For users to be able to see your website, you need Google to see your website first. Google uses crawlers, or as they are commonly known as ‘bots’ for finding new content on the internet. Once, the crawlers access any piece of content, it is indexed in Google’s database.
If Google has trouble viewing your content, then it is pretty obvious that your content will lag in the rankings on SERPs. So, you need to make sure that your website is free from crawling errors. You can simply search your website domain using “site:example.com” as a search term in the Google search box. This would result in all the pages that are indexed with Google. So, if there’s any page missing in Google’s database, you can manually submit it for indexing, using Google Search Console.
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Step2. Opt For Keyword Optimization Of On-Page Content
Further to improve the visibility of your site, you need to rank for more keywords. Not just the ones that have high traffic volume but also the easy ones. You can use Google’s suggestions for optimizing your content for LSI keywords that users are searching for.
To begin with, you can type the most relevant keyword that you can think of but do not press “enter” or the “search” button. Look for the suggestions that Google puts forth. For example, type the term “marketing tools” and look for what Google suggests. These search terms are surely being searched by the users, as they are being suggested by Google. Since keyword stuffing is no longer beneficial, you’ll need to include different versions of the same keyword. And in addition to it, you can include contextual words that are commonly used with your primary target keyword. This is where Google’s suggestions come in handy.
Step3. Make Sure Your Website Is Mobile-Friendly
A couple of years ago, Google updated its core algorithm with “mobile-first indexing.” Since the majority of Google’s users are using mobile devices, if your website isn’t optimized for mobile use, it might not rank as well in search results.
Fortunately, you can easily find out if your website is mobile optimized using Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test tool. All you need to do is feed the page you wish to check mobile-friendliness for, and you can easily get an answer in yes or no. If yes, then you are in luck, or else you may need to put in some efforts with your website designing team to get it fixed.
Step4. Optimize Your Site For Quick Loading Response
Online users don’t like to wait anymore. This is mainly because of the improved data speeds and user experience that websites and internet service providers tend to focus on. Usually, users bounce back from a page that takes more than 2-3 seconds to load.
An increased bounce rate can affect the overall ranking of your website in SERPs. Sarah Kirksey from WPFarm.com says that one way to decrease site loading time is to optimize any images on your website. Alternatively, you can also switch to a dedicated hosting/server package or Virtual Private Server that gives you more freedom, along with securing your data. Shared hosting can put your data at risk and also increases the loading time, mainly because of the high traffic on the server. Implementing a dedicated server can significantly improve your website’s performance.
Step5. Cross Check Any Crawl Errors & Broken Links
Since search engines, including Google, uses crawlers to access your website. The bots keep on crawling through content and links to update new content, from time to time. Likewise, you also need to keep a check if your website is experiencing any crawl errors.
In addition to checking for any crawl errors, you also need to look for any broken links that your website may have. Google and other leading search engines make note of the backlinks that a site has to rank it in results for relevant search terms. A broken or a bad link can do more harm than a good link can bring in benefits for your site. For this reason, you should continuously keep a check on the link health of your website.
Step6. Seek Collaborative Opportunities With Bloggers
Apart from checking for broken links, your site also needs new links. Since these backlinks are a measure of the authority that your website holds on the internet, new and relevant links become all the more important for SEO.
For this purpose, you can seek collaborations from influential bloggers. These bloggers can help secure contextual links for your website, along with spreading the awareness for your brand. Soon you can realize a jump in your website rankings. All you need to make sure of is to maintain niche relevancy and publish content that your audience finds useful.
Step7. Give Your Site Some Final Touch Ups
Once you are done with all the basic setup that your website needs, you can give some final touch-ups. You can optimize the URL of your landing pages to suit the title. Essentially, you need to keep them short and include keywords as well.
Furthermore, you can optimize your snippets and schema markups with the keywords that you haven’t used in your content but are relevant to the content on the page. You can also, try shifting to HTTPS to offer improved data security to your users. And Google surely loves secure websites. There are many technical elements that you can optimize. Once you start receiving traffic for your relevant keywords, you can put your efforts in that direction. But, let’s leave it for some other time.
For now, all you need to focus on is improving your website’s visibility. It is only after you start gaining sustainable traffic on your website, that you should, move further. But, keep in mind, SEO is not an overnight magic trick. It requires a lot of effort, and that too consistently.