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Congratulations and welcome aboard the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) ship, or train, whichever you prefer. Whether it’s a ship or a train, the SEO industry is evolving and getting more complicated with each Google update. It took the SEO industry 20 years to get where it is now, so if you’re just starting, you might have some distance to cover and at the same time, keep up to pace with Google.
Sounds like a lot of work?
Yes, SEO is hard work. But worry not, because we have asked several experts in the SEO industry for their advice to beginners and compiled them all into one simple and comprehensible article. Here are some of the most valuable SEO advice given by SEO experts around the world.
With each change in the Google’s search algorithm, some SEO techniques and strategies become obsolete. Many websites get dropped for the rankings permanently and many people lose large amounts of traffic. And yet some thrive.
Change will always happen. As a beginning SEO you need to be ready for these changes. You need to continually expand your knowledge base and keep up with what is happening in the industry. So there is no excuse for you to be caught with your pants down the next time Google decides to make a change.
SEO is a fairly new industry in comparison to other traditional or conventional industries. Which is why so many people are not convinced by it, yet. Some even went as far as saying that SEO is dead whenever there is a new Google update.
No matter what anyone says, SEO is here to stay. Your skills will always be in demand and there will always be some work for you. As long as humans keep conducting Internet searches there will be a need for SEO.
Every business, big or small, with a web presence needs some sort of SEO help. The next time you are out and about take a look at all the local businesses you pass. Each one of them is a potential client. As long as businesses need to sell goods and services there will be a need for SEO. It may be in a different form that it is today but it will still be an integral part of business marketing.
We’ve talked about this before but it needs to be repeated; you will need to adapt if you want to succeed. Too many SEO beginners refuse to change or just give up in the face of the latest Google update. Many of them have now grown to hate Penguins and Pandas. Don’t let this be you.
When these changes happen they are an opportunity for you to expand your knowledge base and skill set. This is also an opportunity to get clients who face a sudden drop in ranking due to the updates. You will be one of the few who can seamlessly incorporate the new rules into your business model and help your current client base. It’s an opportunity for you to go from being a SEO beginner into a SEO expert.
All of your efforts will be of little use if you do not know what is working and what is not. This is where analytics comes in. You need to know where to get the data and you need to evaluate all the data that comes in. One of the best places to get a good sense of what is going on is Google Analytics.
Google Analytics provides you with ton of valuable information including where your traffic is coming from and who your ideal visitor is. All for free. The demographic breakdown is quite impressive.
Why is it important to know who and where your readers are? Simple, having this information will allow you to create content that speaks to them and what keywords will attract them.
Another great tool to acquire data from is RankReveal. RankReveal is a keyword rank tracking tool that is able to track all the keywords your website is ranking for just by keying in the URL of your website.
Here in SEOPressor, we’ve used RankReveal to track the performance of each blog posts and based on that information, we’re able to further optimize it for maximum traffic.
Some SEOs tend to be creatures of habit. When they do something that works they will do it over and over again until someone or something stops them. They never really stop to think is what they did really made a difference. One change made on the webpage may not be the reason for a jump in the search rankings. It may just be a coincidence.
For example, if you change a meta tag and the next day your page jumps 25 spots in the rankings you will be tempted to connect the two. The meta tag change caused the jump in rankings. Armed with this knowledge you go out and change all the meta tags on all of your pages and eagerly await the massive jump in the rankings. But it doesn’t happen. In fact, some pages drop in the rankings.
Now you are upset and downright despondent. You go back and change all the meta tags back to the way they were hoping that you can undo the damage. You have just created more work for yourself and done some serious damage to your confidence.
You need to pay attention to what Google, and other search engines, say they want and do that. Talk to other SEOs and see what is working for them.
Google wants fresh, relevant content, so that’s what you need to give them. The days of keyword stuffing and article spinning are over. You need to give your readers valuable information that answers their questions or solves their problems. Your content needs to rank on keywords that satisfy the expectations of the search intention.
There was a time when you could post articles that made absolutely no sense so long as they had the keyword repeated throughout and you could rank. Some SEOs would even type the keyword over and over again at the bottom of the article in the same color as the background (white type on white background) and would rank in the top spot. Alas, those days are in the past.
This open letter to SEO beginners would be doing you a disservice if it did not stress this point. You could do all the other things correctly but if your content is weak you will have a difficult time getting your pages to the top of the search results.
In fact, having thin or irrelevant content could even get your site a penalty from Google. Provide great contentand you should have great success as an SEO.
One last advice – have fun. It is a great way to make a living and it certainly beats auditing. It is one of the few industries where you can make a lot of money without a degree or being a member of the Old Boys Club. It is truly a meritocracy where you are rewarded for your efforts.
So go out into the world knowing that you are providing a valuable service and making a difference. Enjoy each day of your work and be thankful that you are in SEO. Someday you may be the one that gets approached to give your advice to all the SEO beginners out there and share your knowledge with them.
All the best.
Updated: 10 December 2017