The difference between the master and the beginner is in the mastery of basics.
That’s true in the martial arts, sports and even SEO.
If you’re serious about building a website and using SEO to drive traffic to your site, you need to master the basic of SEO.
That’s the key towards building an effective website that’s flocked by many visitors and loved by the search engine.
So, what’s the good basics of SEO practices?
1. Focus and optimize ONE site
If you’re just starting out on SEO, you might still be confused with all the terms, jargon and terminologies. And you *think* having lots of websites to experiment with will help you make money and understand SEO better.
But you’re actually shooting yourself in the foot.
By having multiple sites to manage, you’re throwing more variables to the equation.
Don’t purchase new domains, just focus on ONE website. If you have already bought many domains, ignore them for a while until you’ve mastered good SEO practices.
Focusing on just one site allows you to experiment, succeed and make mistake. You want to make mistake on just one site, not to 100 sites.
So, the key here is to focus on one site until you have a formula that works and THEN apply it to your other sites.
2. Know and understand your target audience
Do you know and understand your target audience?
If you don’t then SEO probably won’t work for you. You need to do research on what information they’re looking for, what kind of products they’re buying, what age group they’re in and what’s the most likely keywords that they’ll use in the search engine.
You can do this kind of research by going into forums and other related sites on your market.
If you don’t know your audience and what they want, you won’t be able to create content that keep them hooked on your site.
Remember that you eventually write for your users, not for the search engine. The search engine’s job is just to show the users the link to your site, after that it’s your site’s job to serve your users.
Know what they’re looking for and provide great content to them.
Turn them from a visitors to a customers and to a fan.
Give them the information that they’re looking in the first place, build credibility with them and offer them to try out your product and services.
3. Do your keyword research
Be creative, persistent but flexible at the same time when looking for keyword phrases.
Think from your customers’ perspective. What kind of keywords would they type in the search engine to find what they’re looking for?
There are plenty of automated tools to do this research, including Google’s own Adwords Tool but you should inject your common sense here as well.
Don’t just pick one keyword, pick several keyword variations (known as LSI keywords).
Inject them without compromising the content on your site. Don’t keyword spam here.
Use keywords when appropriate to make it easy for the search engine to find your site but don’t throw too many of them that you make your site content unreadable to the regular users.
4. Pay attention to designs and details
You should pay attention to important details such as your site’s design.
Make sure your site’s color, font style and size matches what you want your site to communicate to your visitors.
Make your navigation easy to follow and user friendly. Insert helpful articles, tips, tricks and hints that can be shared by others.
Give them those social media buttons so that they can share it with their friends.
Make a sitemap as well for your users to use. Pay attention to your image alt text in case you’re serving your site to disabled users.
Always, always, always pay attention to the small details and nuances of your site.
5. Provide quality content
A lot of websites just put out a half-hearted content with the hope that they’ll get search engine rankings from it.
However, this kind of practice will put your site in jeopardy. Even if you get past the search engine, you won’t get past your user. They know what’s a good written content and what’s a half-hearted written content looks like.
So make sure you write content that you are proud of and can share it with the world.
Make the content brief, precise and to the point. You are writing for the web and it’s different from writing for academic papers.
Limit the technical jargon to a minimum and get to the point, FAST.
Don’t write an article that’s too long (like 5000+ words). An article with 500 to 1500 words will be sufficient. You can mix up your articles with images and video to make it more interactive.
Remember that your users will probably be skimming the content on your site, not reading all of them so don’t put up a large block of text. One or two
lines work best for online writing. Do 4 lines at a maximum.
Strive to be the best and most comprehensive site that people can trust. You’ll make your mark when it comes to information about the products and services that you’re offering.
Last, but not least, you need to regularly update your site’s content – at least twice a week – so that your users can find something interesting, new and useful. Nobody likes to see a site that stays forever the same.
6. Spread the word around
Are you active in a forum? Are you active in your local community?
If so, you can mention your website there. The point here is not to spam, but to tell other people of the great content that you’ve put up on your site.
If you did everything correctly from step 1 to 5, the people that find your site will be absolutely delighted with the content that you produce. And they’ll most likely refer other people to your site too.
Never be afraid to let the words out about your site as long as you’re confident with the content there.