Understanding Search Engine Optimization
Reannon is a communications expert, and one of her specialities is the use of the internet to boost businesses and organisations.
In this clip, she offers us some insider tips on how to do SEO – search engine optimization.
SEO is a crucial means for any small business to compete with larger, better-known brands. Working with SEO involves trying to get your business to come up first when someone uses an internet search engine in an area related to your activity. SEO is also considered something of a dark art…and highly specialised.
But Reannon lays out some straightforward steps you can take to help your business stand out from the rest of the pack. There’s little point in creating a state-of-the-art website if no one can find it. But making sure that search engines find it requires thought, commitment and hard work.
For instance, you’ll want your business to be found not just by people searching for your actual business name – but looking in a general sense for the service you provide. Learning to think about what someone will type into a search engine, and researching what is already known on that topic, is a key part of SEO.
Reannon works for Las Vegas Recovery Center – a prestigious treatment facility that offers detoxification from alcohol and drugs and treatment programs for addiction. Thus, she works to ensure that LVRC shows up first when someone searches for it, or to help with the areas that it deals with.
But ranking first in search engines is only part of SEO – effective use of ‘keywords’ is also a critical element. In the case of LVRC, someone looking for help with addiction in Nevada or the US as a whole might type in a myriad of search terms in order to find the site – such as ‘drug detox Las Vegas’ or ‘Las Vegas rehab’.
Part of the basic work with SEO is either thinking about these search terms yourself or paying someone else to. It makes sense to get the help you need as a start-up, but in the long run, Reannon suggests you may save yourself money if you acquire some of these skills yourself.
Getting ranked in Google involves doing your keyword research. What are the many ways people can find your website? There are many types of software that can help with us. One free tool that Reannon has found useful is the Google Keyword Planner Tool. This can help you identify particular phrases in terms of search volume and competition.
Once you’ve done your keyword research, the next step is to incorporate those keywords into your website content, in headers and so on. There is a delicate balance between doing this in a natural way and ‘gaming’ the system, which Google disapproves of.
Another key element is making sure your website has plenty of other sites linking to your site. It shows Google you’re ‘popular’ in cyberspace. But don’t fall into the trap of buying these links – Google has sophisticated methods for detecting this, and will penalise you for it.
New content is a necessity if you want to rank well. Google, for instance, constantly monitors cyberspace with its spider bots, and they comb through material and report back to it on new content, broken links etc. So any presence you maintain online needs to be monitored, refreshed, and have new content and links added to it regularly.
All of this takes time, patience, and commitment.
She emphasises that if this is all new to you, don’t be afraid to reach out and get help.
But be careful if you choose to out-source this work – not everyone in the trade is either honest or skilled. Make sure you view their portfolio and bring critical discernment to any claims they make.
If you want to know about the work of Las Vegas Recovery Center, you can find information at http://www.lasvegasrecovery.com
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