Introduction to Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Search engine optimization (SEO) is a collection of tools and techniques used to increase the search ranking of a site or content piece with the ultimate goal of getting more views. We provide several SEO tips to help your content perform better in search results, and we recommend some of our favorite tools for assisting with these practices.
- Choose the topic for your content carefully and consider the target audience. Your content needs to educate or entertain the audience. “How to,” “getting started”, or “what is” guides work very well, as those keywords are searched very often. Do not try to sell your product or service in this top-of-funnel content; your goal needs to be to entertain or help people in order to build trust with them.
- Your title is the most important part of your content piece. Spend some time to figure out what people are searching for. You can do this by searching Google to look at how other, similar pieces of content are titled as well as by using tools like Ubersuggest and Answer the Public to look at search volume. Try to make your title as close as possible to what people are typing into the search field.
- There is no hard rule when it comes to content length or word count. Look for similar content, and make your content similar length. I usually look at similar content and think “How can I do this better?” which often results in slightly longer content than those lookalike pieces. I aim for about 1200 words in my written blog posts, but that could change based on the subject, the audience, and how the search algorithms operate at any given time. Do not duplicate (copy and paste) content! It will hurt your search rankings.
- You should care about site speed (for both desktop and mobile browsers). Google will rank fast sites higher than slow sites. You can check your site speed on Ahrefs and Neil Patel’s SEO Analyzer. Many speed analyzer tools will offer you a list of things you can fix or tweak on your site to make it load faster.
- It’s OK to link out to other, relevant content. Don’t worry about trying to “keep people on your site.” Your goal with top-of-funnel content should be to build trust with your audience. You’ll often find articles (e.g. Wikipedia) or videos outside of your site domain that can help the audience in their journey while consuming your content. Link to those other content pieces, even if they are outside of your domain.
- Measure your success. It’s hard to improve if you don’t measure how well your content is performing. Google Analytics and Fathom Analytics are good tools for looking at page views, how long people view content, etc.
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