The importance of an SEO plan

By | August 15, 2019


Once you have a good grasp of Search Engine Optimization, SEO, you’re ready to optimize your website. We’re going to take you
through the process step-by-step. You’ll learn to develop, prioritize, and adjust your plan to suit your goals. But first, let’s see how important having a good SEO plan has been for Mike’s
hot air balloon business. What I’ve learned over the year
in which I’ve been trading is to really pin-down and to come up
with a more structured plan. It means I’m able to target and focus and put my efforts in a much more
concentrated and effective way that delivers better results. Things like, I didn’t know before that Google filters words, so misspelling of words
or variances on words or themes– I can cut down
on a lot of that chatter, if you like, or that wasted effort. I’m also using things like Maps to target localized business which I want to try and attract. I’ve really been able to see the benefits. For example, my listing has improved
on the organic Google sites. And, of course,
because I’m meeting the passengers, I’m meeting my customers, I’m able to get
that direct feedback from them. Let’s say you want to reach new customers for your fresh-from-the-farm
fruit and veg online delivery service. Your first step
should be keyword research. That means finding out what your
potential customers are searching for. Are they looking for organic produce? Weekly fresh vegetable deliveries? By the way, if you want to learn more
about keyword research, check out our lesson about choosing keywords to focus on. Next, consider related topics. Are vegetarian diets popular? Do requests for gazpacho recipes come up? This will help you make
your keywords more specific, and a better match
to what your customers are looking for. You should do this at least once a year as part of your SEO plan. Once you’ve identified good keywords, take a look at how you’re doing
in search results for those words. How many of these words and phrases bring up your website on a search engine? Are there specific topics that don’t bring
much traffic to your site? This info will help you figure out what’s working for you, and what’s not. If a popular phrase like
“fresh farm vegetables” isn’t pointing customers to your site, you can address those
missing pieces in your SEO plan. Once you’ve discovered the gaps
in your SEO performance, your next step
is to think about how to fix them. Maybe none of the content on your site mentions that you can arrange
regular seasonal deliveries. Is no one linking to your site? Perhaps, you can invite food bloggers to check out your farm in a hope that they’ll mention you in a future blog post. Make a list of anything you think
might improve your SEO performance. Okay, so now you have quite a To-Do list. But don’t worry–
it’s just time to prioritize. It’s natural to want to tackle the items that will give you the biggest bang first, but be realistic. Adding an entire section about sustainable
farming methods to your site, might require hiring a programmer to help, which might cost a fair bit. In the short term, you could post a quick article about the topic on your blog. The next step? Give yourself a deadline for each task so you’re working through your SEO plan steadily throughout the year. Okay, once you’ve set this plan in motion, don’t just forget about it. Your SEO plan will change over time. But how do you know
when it needs updating? Well, one easy way is to check-in when you’re making
other changes to your business, like introducing a new product, or redesigning your website. Also, remember that search engines release new features
and improve their algorithms. For example, many have made adjustments because so many people
now search on mobiles. Finally, adjust your plan when
something isn’t working. Is there a web page that’s not
getting much organic traffic? It may need a refresher. Are you attracting visitors to your site but not making sales? Perhaps, you need
stronger calls to action. Review your results regularly, and shift focus
to the areas that need help. And that’s how you build an SEO plan. Let’s recap: Start with keyword research to understand what
your customers are looking for, then use that info to assess your successes and failures. Brainstorm solutions
to improve your weak spots and prioritize them, and never be afraid to redo your SEO plan based on changes in your world and the world of search engines. Be sure to check out our lesson
explaining the SEO process that has more helpful information to get your plan in motion.

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