SEO for New Website Owners

Some SEO agencies will not take on a client unless their website has been up and running for at least a year. There’s absolutely no reason why they should have that policy , except to cover up their own shortcomings:

On-Page SEO: The agency may lack the technical skills to correct on-page SEO issues that hurt your site. Essentially, they want your site to be SEO ready and then do off-page SEO work such as link building and directory submissions.

Reporting: The biggest question SEO clients have is “When will I see results?” It can take six months or longer for search engines to index and rank a new website.It’s obviously much easier to prove SEO results when a web site is already indexed and ranked by Search Engine Rank Pages (SERPS). It’s much more difficult to prove ROI to a client in the early stages, but not impossible. The key is to measure SEO on a micro level, for example, the change in keyword rank, week-to-week.

Integrated marketing: SEO is just one component of marketing a new business. SEO cannot work without strategic website design and development and social media engagement and optimization. An SEO agency must have experience in all three to effectively boost SEO. SEO-specific firms miss opportunities by not being involved in the biggest SEO influencers: website functionality, and off-site engagement on social networks.

More SEO firms might be willing to take on new website owners if their site had been built with SEO from the ground up. It’s one of the building blocks of an effective web development process. At Liqui-Site, we approach web design with SEO in mind from the onset. In fact, SEO is already in place before the look and feel is explored. A great looking website is useless if it cannot be seen and used by both visitors and search engines.

So, what SEO tactics can you do as a new website owner and what should you leave to the pros?

Site Changes: Some firms may lead you to believe that all changes to a website are the same – that editing a typo on a blog post is the same as redoing all of your title tags. Not so. First of all, SEO agencies use robust SEO software that identifies errors in page titles, meta data and other technical fields, that is not noticeable to most first-time website owners. Ideally title tags should be strategized before the design process, but it is unrealistic that you will know how to retitle and redirect web pages for better optimization as a first time site owner. Leave this to a professional.

Writing: Writing is one way that new website owners can actively influence SEO. Adding fresh content to your website and blog is appreciated by search engines. Returning and new visitors prove that your content is valuable and you earn search engine “trust”. Over time, the process of indexing and ranking your content accelerates. However, SEO agencies are needed to edit your copy to optimize it for search engines. SEO copyediting involves text length, readability, meta data, tagging, multimedia and much more – typically using SEO editing software – to maximize web content. Think about a year’s worth of blog posts that could have been optimized all along, and how much greater the effect could have been to your site’s overall SEO. Writing is a combined effort.

Business Profiles: Another area that new website owners might think about going-it-alone is claiming and editing online business profiles, such as Google Places, Yellow Pages etc. A word of advice – submitting your website to the more than 200 online directors is time consuming, and it’s very easy to create profiles haphazardly and then realize your brand image is not consistent across the web. Take note, many directories hide the “free listing” option, making site owners pay to be listed unnecessarily. Directory descriptions – just like your blog- should be copyedited from an SEO eye to include searchable keywords. Directory link building can get very time consuming and messy, very fast! A final consideration – many of these listings are in fact communities that require frequent updating. Yelp, StoreBoard and AngiesList (to name a few) are platforms for ongoing conversation about your brand. They are almost more like Facebook and Twitter, in that setting up a profile and walking away is more detrimental than not being listed in the first place. If you don’t have the time or resources for basic social media/community management, look to a professional.

While some of our clients are fascinated with the nitty-gritty of SEO, most are not. We gladly take on new website owners because the first year of SEO is the most critical.

One comment on “SEO for New Website Owners

  1. Aldrin Hizon says:

    when choosing the right SEO first thing first is must he/she is aware on Google Penguin and Panda updates so that you won’t waste your money and time.

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