Roovio is on a mission to take the complexity out of SEO. At the heart of Roovio's recommendation engine is the simple phrase "They ask, you answer". Leading up to Roovio's launch, I will blog about various digital marketing topics with an emphasis on SEO. I hope you enjoy this issue. Be sure to subscribe to receive only my best weekly observations and recommendations.

Mike

Simplifying SEO - Part 1 of 7

On Monday night I spoke at the Spur Innov8 MAD Mondays Speaker Series about making SEO simple. The Spur is a private co-working and entrepreneurs club located in Southampton, NY with plans to expand nationwide. My pitch to them was as follows:

"Learn why and how to engage in SEO basics (think: 'they ask, you answer'--read this dated but still relevant article that appeared in The New York Times: 'Answer Customer Questions'; if you like that article, you may want to read Marcus Sheridan's book). Yes, SEO is made to appear way too complicated for most small businesses. I will take the complexity out of SEO and guide you towards an effective SEO (and digital marketing!) strategy that will surely increase your revenue."

Simple, right? Well, certainly less daunting once you get folks to focus early on the essential tasks -- the 15% that is critical but manageable. My argument is that small business owners are drowning in statistics, benchmarks, KPIs, rankings, conversion data, dashboards, audits, schema, robots.txt, meta data, etc. Can’t blame the thousands of folks for searching ‘seo for dummies‘ every month on Google. Just take a look at these dashboard reports from some of the major SEO platforms out there:

Dizzying SEO reports!

I say that the problem begins with the acronym S-E-O. Search engine optimization? No! Website optimization is the goal so that your URL appears on page 1 of Google (in the organic listings):

The holy grail....

Another way to think about SEO is the description recently published by MOZ: "It’s about understanding what people are searching for online, the answers they are seeking, the words they’re using, and the type of content they wish to consume." Yes! We're going to focus on those words to inform all our actions in the early days of keyword research and website optimization (hmmmm.....maybe KRWO instead of SEO?!)

Getting onto Page 1

So, how does a webpage appear on page 1 of the SERPs? Three things really:

  1. Keyword research
  2. Publishing compelling content
  3. Social media marketing to get backlinks to your page

In other words, the essence of getting to page 1 is all about focusing on the following questions:

  • Which keywords to focus on (and why)?
  • What content to publish? How much?
  • Which influencers to reach out to on social media?
  • Which websites and blogs to reach out to for links?

Sure, there are other things that I'll discuss over the next several weeks like the importance of making sure your site looks good on mobile devices and securing your site (getting an SSL certificate) but this series of articles is about taking care of first things first (which reminds me, First Things First is waiting for me on my kindle...but will have to wait until I finish the excellent What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami, but I digress).

So, in the next issue, I'll dive into logical keyword research and why it matters. Until then, play around with this keyword research tool: LSIgraph.com and, if you want to jump ahead a little, read about these 9 predictions for SEO in 2018:

Finally, if you've read this far, you deserve a treat--here's a peek at my digital marketing mindmap:

I'll go into detail on each category in future issues of this newsletter but, first, let's simplify SEO!

Thanks for reading.

Mike Corso

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