Quite a number of new clients expect SEO is some kind of magic trick that a web developer can pull from their hat and suddenly have their new website appear on page one of Google. “Page one for what?”, I ask, as in most cases a client would not have given any thought to which search terms they would like their website to appear on page one for. Well that’s another thing the web developer is expected to pull from that hat of magic SEO tricks. So onward I go and research businesses in the same industry to that of my client and determine some common search terms. I do my best to structure the site content around those terms. This however is only the beginning of on site SEO.
I am a web developer, I’m not an expert on the product or service my clients are selling or providing. They know their product, they know their service and they can talk about their daily or weekly experiences. I advise clients to start a blog to help promote their website in search engine rankings. This allows them to write about an aspect of their business in a timely and relevant manner. I’ll come back to that when I talk about how to actually write a blog post.
So why is a blog important for SEO?
A blog facilitates building of content in a manner that is excellent for search engines. First, you’ll get a page link that will relate to your topic. Google will index that link. Next you’ll have text content that will all be indexed by Google. Finally, Google will see your website as being alive with activity – which it tends to like when considering search rankings.
Now if you can manage to write something interesting someone may actually read it. Someone may actually discover your website and your business by searching for an answer that may be provided in your blog post. If this topic relates directly to your business product or service then you may have an organic lead. That’s the direct approach and it’s somewhat effective. However, if you are just starting a business and it happens to be in a competitive industry, there are going to be many other businesses occupying the first few pages of Google for typical search terms for your industry segment. The first page of Google is like the High Street retail strip in a major city. You are just starting out on a small budget and you cannot expect to find a tenancy in that area.
How do I rank my website above established competitors?
Another strategy for blog writing is to write a blog entry that is of interest to a typical client you may have that may not relate directly to your business product service at all. Let’s say I’m selling flowers. Who buys flowers? Maybe someone planning a wedding? Who is planning a wedding? Someone whom is about to get married and wants to look their best on their wedding day? Maybe someone who could use some dietary advice? You could write a blog entry about healthy eating if you know something about that. But you sell flowers. Well, someone might search for that topic and discover your site and get some value from that post. Someone whom is about to get married might see you also sell flowers and bingo you have a new potential client that found you before they found some other site by searching for flowers.
Ask yourself, who is my typical client? What interests do they have? Make a list of those interests and if you have a level of expertise on any of them, blog about it. Try to be helpful.
A blog is a pathway to your business, not a destination
If someone already knows about your website, your business and what you sell, chances are they’re not going to be visiting your blog page unless they’re a real fan of your writing. On the other hand, just one blog post that someone discovers via a Google search can act as a hook that will lead a potential client to your business. Think of your blog not as a destination, but as a pathway to your website.
You can unleash the real power of blogging when you are able to leverage subject matter that doesn’t necessarily relate directly to your business, but may relate directly to potential clients of your business. It can leap your website to the top of the search rankings for some search terms you never dreamed would be how someone may find your business. This is why a blog is not only important, but essential if you want to maximise your website’s SEO potential.