SEO Basics for Beginners
The creative studio
Search engine optimization (SEO) might be a term you’ve heard of before, but like many, you may have felt confused and overwhelmed at the very thought of it!
But it doesn’t need to be confusing or overwhelming.
Simply put, SEO is the process of obtaining free traffic to your website from Google and other search engines. I’m going to be covering some SEO basics for beginners, so you can get caught up to speed on how you can improve your SEO and get more free traffic to your site from search engines.
Keywords are the basic foundation of SEO. A keyword is a word or phrase that defines your content. Keywords are important to your content because they tell search engines what your content is about and where to place it within the search results!
For example, if you were to write a blog post about the best places to eat in New York, your keyword could be something like “best places to eat in New York”.
If someone goes to search “best places to eat in New York”, Google recognizes you have a blog post written about that exact topic and will put it within the search results.
When trying to find keywords to put into your content, try to use long-tail keywords. Long-tail keywords are three or more words. The shorter the keyword, the more competitive it is and the less chance you’ll rank high in the search results.
When adding keywords into your content, it’s important to:
use them naturally. Don’t overuse a keyword as that is called keyword stuffing and could get your website penalized from Google.
include them in the content, the title, headings, anchor text, image names and alt text if possible.
Backlinks are links from other websites that link to your own website. Having lots of backlinks is the equivalent of having lots of authentic followers on social media.
When your website has lots of external links pointing to it, Google sees that as a strong signal of trust.
It’s important to build your backlinks because the more quality backlinks you have, the more likely Google will want to place your site higher in the search results.
You can build backlinks by:
creating great content that people will naturally want to link to
guest posting on other blogs and linking back to your own content
When building backlinks, you should never buy any links. Just like keyword stuffing could get your website penalized by Google, so will buying backlinks!
Optimizing your images is important for your SEO for a couple different reasons.
First, big and bulky images will cause your website to run slow.
Google doesn’t like putting slow websites on the first page of the search results, so to keep your website running fast you should use a tool such as TinyPNG to compress your images and keep them from taking up too much storage on your website!
I also mentioned above that you should include keywords in your image file name.
Naming your images with your keywords will look something like this: your-keyword.jpg. If the keyword for your blog post or page was “red velvet cupcakes” your image names could be something like:
Lastly, when uploading an image to your website, make sure to fill out the “alt text” description box as shown below:
Alt text is text that describes your image in case your visitor is unable to see it. Google likes to see you’ve used descriptive and simple alt text that accurately describes the image.
Make Your Website Mobile Friendly
One of the most important SEO basics is to make your website mobile friendly. As the majority of online searches are done via a mobile device, Google wants to make sure the websites in the search results are mobile friendly.
A mobile friendly website is one that is easy to read and navigate through on a mobile device!
Google has a quick test you can take to see if your website meets their requirements. If it doesn’t, you should consider switching your WordPress theme to one that is mobile-friendly, or contacting a web designer for some help.
By following these SEO basics for beginners, you will be able to start getting traffic from search engines to your website.
I also have a free SEO cheat sheet that will help you remember everything mentioned in this article.
I also have a free SEO cheat sheet that will help you remember everything mentioned in this article. Sign up below.