By Francis King – Customer Acquisition, OnlyDomains
It’s 2023 and there’s a lot of talk that SEO is over. Dead in the water. Better left in the past as we move toward greater things.
But this couldn’t be further from the truth. Today, SEO is more relevant than ever. If you want to increase your website’s presence to reach new audiences, generate leads, increase conversions, and boost sales, it’s worth investing time and effort in SEO.
That said, SEO isn’t everything. It’s not always a good indicator of how well your business is doing, nor can it predict revenue. However, it does indicate how strong and engaged your online presence is—and the importance of having a website is undeniable for any business in 2023.
This article briefly summarises what you need to get started with SEO in 2023. But the most significant tip we can give you is to keep on your toes. The SEO world changes quickly. What Google looks for and values can change overnight, and yesterday’s best practices might be a shortcut to getting blacklisted today.
It’s also worth noting that while it’s not strictly necessary, you can buy certain business domain names for your website. Having a unique domain name can be an original way to make your business stand out in the crowd.
Now, let’s dive in.
What is SEO and why does it matter?
SEO stands for search engine optimisation. That might sound intimidating, but not when you break it down.
We all know what a search engine is—think Google, Bing, DuckDuckGo, and Ecosia. And ‘optimisation’ simply means you want to ‘optimise’ or advance your place in search results.
In other words, you want to refine your online content to appeal to the likes of Google to ensure your website appears and ranks highly in the organic search results (that is, compared to paid-for ads). Essentially, you want your website to be among the first few links that appear after a Google search because that is where users put their trust and attention.
So how does this work? Search engines ‘crawl’ or read your website to determine the relevance and quality of the content you’re offering. The higher ‘score’ you get, the better you place in their rankings.
SEO Techniques to Follow
Good SEO entails different techniques that help bump up your rating. We’ll be looking at three particular practices today to get you started:
- Keyword research
- Content creation
- Positive user experience
Consider keyword research the bread and butter of your SEO slog.
In its simplest form, keyword research entails finding out what your customers are looking for. Let’s say you sell leather jackets. Using a keyword search tool, ‘leather jackets’ is the initial keyword that you would type in to see what people are searching for alongside this keyword.
This helps you find out what your customers’ pain points are—that is, what types of problems do they need solving?
Some keyword research that takes this into account could include: “best leather jacket”, “vegan leather jacket”, “how to clean leather jackets”, and so on.
Don’t forget to keep your brand’s USPs in mind and find keywords relevant to your business. It’s also worth conducting keyword research around your competitors and identifying the language they use to sell to consumers.
Once you have a comprehensive list of keywords and phrases from your research, you can start creating relevant and targeted content for your audience.
Rather than creating content for the sake of it, it’s essential to understand the type of content that will create an impact and deliver results.
To do this, it’s worth understanding the four intentions people have when searching online:
- Commercial: People searching for a specific product, for example, the best leather jackets of 2023
- Informational: People seeking advice such as how to care for a leather jacket
- Transactional: Customers ready to spend! They may search for ways to buy leather jackets online
- Navigational: Users specifically searching for a site that they’re already familiar with, for example, leatherjackets.com
Use your keyword research to build content around these four intentions. For example, perhaps you publish a long-form guide on what to look for in a leather jacket, including types of material, care instructions, and why your brand sells the best kind of leather jacket.
Content creation undoubtedly takes time. But don’t be tempted to take a shortcut and duplicate content, as search engines will penalise your site.
One way to save time and energy is by investing in content automation. Automating processes like email marketing and social media saves you valuable time, effort, and money.
In addition, remember that content creation is part and parcel of your broader marketing strategy. So rather than simply creating content for the sake of it, you must monitor and evaluate your content. After all, there’s no point investing resources into something that doesn’t work!
One way to do this is to use Rank tracking software to see keyword ranking positions. In addition to assessing the impact of your keywords, this will also allow you to keep an eye on the keywords of competitors and also if there are any changes to keyword rankings over time.
Tracking organic traffic, keyword rankings, and visibility are significant ways of gauging the effectiveness of your SEO efforts. As we mentioned, content creation is part of marketing, so consider using marketing analytics tools to track its performance and find ways to improve.
Positive User Experience
The third line of defence in your three-pronged SEO attack includes creating a positive user experience.
Search engine crawlers—the ones that are checking your website for relevance and quality—favour the following elements:
- An appealing website design
- A mobile-friendly site
- Readable font
- No pop-ups or ads
- A fast-loading site
- Internal links
- High-quality external links
Creating a smooth user experience will help you rank higher in Google’s ratings. It might seem difficult to keep on top of all of these things, especially in the beginning, so consider using an SEO plugin to do the work for you.
The Next Frontier in SEO
While we’ve covered the basics in this article, there are many more ways to optimise your site, some of which still aren’t widely known. For example, a good domain name is invaluable and can also improve your SEO.
Focusing on domain extensions—that is, the end part of the URL such as .com or .co.uk—is the next frontier in the wild west of SEO. What’s more, using unique and fun domain extensions can help your company stick in people’s minds, reinforcing a positive user experience.
For example, if you run an AI business, you could consider using an OnlyDomains registration in Anguilla. Having an .ai domain extension can round off your website nicely, making your company appear more professional.
So, secure a unique domain extension and start optimising your website’s content today to help your business flourish in 2023.