May 29, 2014

Getting on Page One of Google: Three Key Elements of SEO

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a constant struggle for marketers. Between Google’s slew of updates and the complicated jargon, organizations are simply fed up. 

Still, you would be hard-pressed to find a business that doesn’t want to claim the top spot on Google. According to a study from Chitika, the top listing in Google's organic search results receives 33 percent of the traffic, compared to 18 percent for the second position.

It’s no secret that the majority of customers start their search for products and services online. Without a SEO strategy in place, however, people will have a hard time finding your businesses and will likely find your competitors instead. While capturing that coveted spot on Google is extremely beneficial for businesses, getting there isn’t easy—especially for small businesses. 

So what is the key to building a successful SEO strategy?

At today’s Market New York Expo, SEO strategy was the topic of discussion during the breakout session “Search Engine Optimization: How to Get a Page One Listing in Google.” There, Message Medium President Maisha Walker discussed the three key elements of SEO:

1.     Keyword List: The first step to creating a successful SEO strategy is determining what keywords you are targeting. Choose carefully because these keywords act as the foundation of your entire strategy. Avoid generic keywords like “customer service” or “wedding favors,” as these are highly competitive, Walker explained. What’s more, choose keywords based on more than just high search traffic; consider intent, specificity and competition.

2.    Keyword density and engagement: Once you’ve determined your list of keywords, the next step is to optimize your website. But before you can do that, make sure you can easily update it. Walker suggests placing keywords in title tags, meta descriptions, URLs, body text and H1.

3.    Incoming Links: The final element to a successful SEO strategy is incoming links. Incoming links, also known as inbound links, are defined as links found elsewhere on the Internet that direct users to your site only. Incoming links are important because it’s an unsolicited way for others to “vote” for your website. It’s also a way that search engines determine whether your website is relevant, according to Walker.

Let’s face it: SEO is hard. But with the three steps above you can get on the road to becoming number one on Google. And once that happens, your business will undoubtedly grow.

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