Understand what SEO is, what are the basic must-haves, and how to look at SEO alongside your marketing and promotions.
First off what is SEO?
It’s Search Engine Optimisation. It’s making sure the website you bothered (or lovingly invested the time and energy to create) is optimised for search engines. I.e. Making sure the site you made is recognised by the Search Engine. AND recognised for the things you want to be recognised for.
Like little kids at a kindergarten. Kids wearing the uniforms lets teachers know – ok, this is a student of our school. And what the students are known for is how the kid themselves behave (in your case, how your website behaves) and also what they make themselves known for. (That’s the labelling part of SEO – read on)
So how can SEO make you money
By being found. By being seen. I mean writing blogs, creating content, it’s all part of sharing what you know and getting others to see you as the “leader” in what you want them to know you for.
For example, if you are a store owner making Korean “sushi rolls” – Gimbap. You can run your store and be discovered that way by those who drive past or walk past.
Or – you can make sure your website is labelled correctly to “Gimbap, Sydney” for example. Or more specifically, “Korean Sushi Rolls Gimbap, Chatswood.” Then for those craving for some good, tummy-nourishing Gimbap, they’ll at least find you more easily because your site is properly labelled, it helps the Search Engines to serve it up to people looking for the things your website says you offer.
In a way, running the store and having the signage at the front of the store is the first step.
Then having the store info online and website labelled correctly is like putting your store signage in the massive “yellow pages” of the internet world.
Google and search engines are our go-to for looking up stuff. You want to make sure the directory knows you for what you want to be known for. If you sell Gimbap in Chatswood, make sure your website is optimised for the search engine that you are all about Korean sushi rolls Gimbap and Chatswood.
Say you’re a floral art designer that does weddings. Likewise – you want your site to be tagged correctly so Google’s massive “yellow pages” know you for floral art designs for weddings.
If you don’t take care of the SEO, then you’re just leaving yourself off the directory. Essentially limiting yourself to those who walk past your store, or to those who ask their friend about Gimbap in Chatswood and happen to know of your store.
Can SEO save you money?
Yes as attention paid to SEO consistently and done well could reap more rewards in long run, while costing less.
Here’s why. SEO plays on organic search. Organic search meaning what you and I are typing into the search box – and that’s free.
For example, you are a tacos shop in Singapore. With a combination of things done well (Brand concept & communications, site design, customer service, etc) People who are looking for tacos in Singapore might visit and spend a lot of time on your site. Google takes note of how people looking for Tacos in Singapore spend lots of time on your site – your site must have interesting things for them, keeping customers happy (or else they would have bounced). That being the case, Google is likely to continue sending more people to your site who are looking for Tacos in Singapore.
The point is, you want an online experience that makes people want to stick around. Another way to put it – you’re not designing a website, you’re designing an online experience.
Organic search is free. Paid search – like Google and Facebook Ads – you pay for.
“You’re not designing a website, you’re designing an online experience.”karen of Orchestrii
Does SEO bring in the dough
SEO on its own doesn’t bring in business. SEO is part and parcel of a good, healthy website and digital presence. The effectiveness of converting those ‘warm leads’ interested in your business into your customers can be affected by your branding (brand image, look and feel, communications), your offers, the way you promote and share your services on social media/newsletters/public speaking engagements etc.
Organic Search – the Long Game
Search Engine Optimisation is not something that happens overnight. It’s not a magic pill you install on your site and overnight your site will rank higher.
Rather, optimising your webiste for Search Engines would typically take a couple months because that’s the time it takes for Search Engines to visit your site again and this time be like, “Oh, this business sells Gimbap in Chatswood. We’ll make a note of that for search visitors”
Overtime, SEO pays dividends
An online regional parents site I was managing started off on the right foot. They were consistent with the SEO and had a site that was built to load fast and structure-wise easy for users to navigate. With the site set up and maintained for SEO success, whenever people searched for say, “hockey camps for kids” – their listing would come up on top – over that of a real hockey school. That’s how they’ve earned “street cred” in the internet world for having done SEO. Whatever their site puts out is given heavier weighting by the search engines than a younger site, or a site that isn’t as well designed for SEO.
When you pay attention to SEO, it’ll help establish you further up towards the top of the search results. And it’ll give you credibility – because you’ve built your repute online in some way or another.
Start here with SEO 👇🏼
There are various aspects to manage with SEO. But here is a great place to begin:
- Make sure your site loads fast – no one waits for a page to load. So if your site is loading slow, see if it’s because the images file sizes are way too big and fix that by looking up what the recommended image sizes are for your design, or use a caching plug-in or a image optimising plug-in.
- Make sure you’ve uploaded a sitemap – it’s like map for search engines, telling it “Hey, this is the map around my site. Come take a stroll around to verify what we have on here.”
- If you’re running on wordpress, install an SEO plugin and use it. The popular ones are Yoast SEO and All in One SEO. These help with the labelling. For those using other Content Management Systems, don’t fret! The site I mentioned that has got great mojo in the digital world ran their site geared for SEO success on drupal 🙂 They sure invested in a strong backend.
Got things you’re wondering about?
Ask away and we’ll get back to you via email or a blogpost!